I’m a big lover of hyaluronic acid, and it is the only one skincare I can’t do without. I began the relationship with HA 10 years back, with Skinceuticals Hydrating B5. It is a simple recipe yet effective in leaving your skin feels supple and smooth, most importantly enhances the benefits of a daily moisturizer. HA slows the rate at which water evaporates from the skin, providing hydration without clogging pores!
There are many effective natural HA serums in the market. However, HA is also a wonderful and luxurious ingredient to work with. It is suitable for all types of skin and generally safe. You can either make some lovely recipe with HA or use it as a hydrating toner, serum or moisturizer!
HOW TO MAKE HYALURONIC ACID
A natural humectant, HA is capable of holding its weight in water. Just a single gram of HA can hold up to six liters of water. And so, we will be making 1% of HA. And why not making higher concentration since it holds so much water to keep our skin hydrated. Well, it is not always the case of more is better. HA is beneficial for skin has to do with its molecular weight and concentration. The molecular weight refers to its mass, or how big the HA molecule is.
HA comes with HMW (High Molecular Weight) and LMW (Low Molecular Weight). HA LMW has been found to “increase the moisture level of damaged skin and to accelerate damage repair,” and will not form a viscous gel in water so improves its ability to penetrate the upper layers of the skin. As for HA HMW, it holds moisture to the surface of the skin without penetrating deeper layers of the epidermis. In short, the smaller the molecule, the deeper it can penetrate the skin.
You can purchase hyaluronic acid in a variety of different weights. However, not many suppliers carry a range, so most commonly, suppliers will have low molecular weight as their choice of HA.
However, when working on HA, it has a tendency to clump when added to water, so you will have to give it some time to hydrate, then mix well. Depending on how much you will be making, 100g of 1% of HA LMW can take up to 2-4 hours to hydrate. A 1% LMW HA solution is relatively viscous. I tried making 2%, but it was too thick, definitely not ideal and you will be wasting this expensive and precious ingredient. Hence, if you come across any serum or cream stating more than 2% of Sodium Hyaluronate in the INCI (International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredient is the internationally recognized and utilized system for ingredients used in cosmetics), it will not be true.
HA can be used to thicken some formulations. Add water-soluble ingredients like panthenol (vitamin B5) and herbal extracts can create beautiful hydrating toner. If you are making lotions or creams, replace part of the water phase with 1% of HA stock can help to deliver intense skin hydration throughout the day!
1% Hyaluronic Acid Stock Recipe
|1 g | 1% Sodium Hyaluronate|
|98.5g | 98.5g Distilled Water (or Rosewater)|
|0.5 g | 0.5% Preservatives (preservative of your choice)|
2. Weigh the water and preservative into a beaker, and stir to combine. Sprinkle the HA overtop.
3. DO NOT STIR OR MIX.
4. Let Sodium Hyaluronate hydrate by itself. Cover the beaker by plastic film and leave it for a few hours.
Check on the HA periodically, and you will see the Sodium Hyaluronate powder turns transparent as it slowly hydrates.
Once the powder has hydrated, you can stir it with a mini mixer to quickly and thoroughly incorporate the hydrated HA into the rest of the solution.
You will see bubbles form when you stir, and it will settle down on its own after awhile.
Label it and keep it in the fridge. It is not necessary to refrigerate as you use preservative, but I love it cool when I used it alone or with a daily moisturizer to provide extra hydration!
You can keep the stock until you are ready to use it for your formulation.