Which chemicals are good for skin?
Which chemicals are good for skin?
Let’s start with a basic question about chemicals, “Are chemicals good for the skin?”. The answer is “YES, but not all are good for all skin types”. Our skin gets exposed to surrounding throughout the day facing dirt, pollution, sun exposure, sweat, germs, so and so. It causes problems like tan, pigmentation, acne, clogged pores, blackheads, white heads, and a never-ending list of problems but the best part is these chemicals targets problems directly and works magically against them and worst is if any chemical being used for any problem that it doesn’t help to cure then it can worsen the situation. On top of it, not all chemicals suit all skin problems which puts us in a dilemma of choosing the right chemical or combination of chemicals.
But worry not, our experts have sorted this for you. Let’s move to the clear road map of chemicals to decide which one is made for your skin. Here are the top chemicals you will see in the market and essential information about them.
Niacinamide: Niacinamide which is aka nicotinamide is an essential nutrient for our overall health and skin. It is a form of Vitamin B-3, which is naturally found in green vegetables, eggs, milk, cereals, meat, and fish. It helps the skin to grow a water barrier which as a result retains moisture in our skin and keeps it hydrated.
Suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin.
How should it be used? In skin care, it is mostly used in serums. It usually holds 2-5% of the overall combination which makes it safe even for sensitive skin. Apart from that, it can be found in cleansers, moisturizers, and face packs.
Benefits: Improves hydration, helps in reducing irritation, can reduce environmental damage, slow down aging, minimize the visibility of black spots and
Tocopherol: Tocopherol is a form of Vitamin E, it’s an essential fat-soluble ingredient. It promotes cellular functions and skin health. It has numerous health benefits for the skin and hair.
Suitable for Sensitive Skin, matured skin, and dry skin
How should it be used? It is generally mixed with other products like serums, moisturizers, and face packs to boost their effectiveness.
Benefits: Hydration, skin brightening, anti-aging.
Hyaluronic Acid: Don’t get misled by the word acid in this ingredient. Unlike other acids which are exfoliants, this acid provides hydration to your skin. This acid is a humectant, It can carry 1000 times its weight in water and locks the moisture from the air to the upper layer of the skin to keep it supple and soft. It’s a sugar that is naturally found in our skin but by the time we age, it gets deteriorated.
Suitable for all skin types
How should it be used? It can be used in cleansers, serums, toners, or creams.
Benefits: Provides deep and lasting hydration, and firmness and helps in reducing fine lines. It is naturally non-comedogenic.
Pantothenic Acid: Pantothenic acid is a water-soluble vitamin that helps water to retain on our skin for long-lasting hydration and smoothness. As we discussed above, hyaluronic acid starts fading from our skin as we age and this Vitamin B5 helps the hyaluronic acid in retaining moisture. It has calming effects as well and many dermatologists prescribe it to patients suffering from skin irritation.
Suitable for all skin types and especially for dry and sensitive skin.
Benefits: Provides long-lasting hydration, soothes skin, is anti-inflammatory and repairs damaged skin.
AHAs - Alpha Hydroxy Acids
AHAs are water-soluble acids with fine molecular size, their main job is to gently dissolve the bond between dead skin cells so that it can be removed easily. As they are water soluble, they don’t penetrate deep below the upper layer of skin but are very capable of reducing fine lines, acne scars, and dark spots. Here are some well-known acids that come under AHAs.
Citric Acid: Suitable for all skin types and ages, specially matured skin should consider them
Glycolic Acid: Suitable for mature skin, generally above 25 years.
Lactic Acid: Suitable for dry skin and sensitive skin.
Benefits: Reduces fine lines, encourages cells to regenerate, lessens acne scars, brightens the complexion, and gives even skin tone.
How should it be used? These acids are generally used in face masks, cleansers, and serums.
BHAs - Beta Hydroxy Acids
BHAs are oil-soluble acids that make them reach a deeper level of the skin. It not only exfoliates the skin but also clears pores and controls oil and sebum. They target the sebaceous glands which help in stopping the formation of blackheads and whiteheads. They are more powerful in fighting acne bacteria. Salicylic acid is the only acid that comes in BHAs.
Suitable for oily, combination, and acne-prone skins.
Benefits: Exfoliates skin, fights acne-causing bacteria, controls oil and sebum production, and brightens skin.
How should it be used? It is generally used in cleansers, peel-off masks, serums, and sometimes in makeup.
PHAs - Poly Hydroxy Acids
PHAs are water-soluble acids same as AHAs with larger molecular sizes which makes them best for very sensitive skin as it does not dive deep into the skin and stays on the upper layer only. Gluconolactone and Lactobionic acid are the most common PHAs you can find in your skin care products.
Suitable for very sensitive skin.
Benefits: Least possibility of side effects, makes pores less visible, and hydrating
How should it be used? These acids generally can be used in serum, exfoliating masks, and face cleansers.
How can these chemicals be mixed and used to increase their efficiency and get better results?