While it’s famous for its use as an injectable, don’t discount the benefits of using hyaluronic acid for your hair. It’s renowned for its ability to leave skin firm while reducing the appearance of fine lines. The same properties that make it such a wonder chemical for the skin are what make it great for your hair. But first, let’s get to know about what hyaluronic acid is.
What is hyaluronic acid?
Hyaluronic acid is a type of sugar molecule that occurs naturally in your skin. It’s classified as a humectant, not a moisturizer. Essentially, this means that the hyaluronic acid not only pulls moisture in from the air, but also helps retain it. The sugar molecule also helps bind water to collagen, hydrating the skin and improving its overall appearance. As a result, it leaves your skin plumper and more dewy.
The hyaluronic acid in your body can hold up to one thousand times its weight in water. With its water-density, this acid helps your joints and skin retain moisture, preventing it from evaporating into the air.
3 Unexpected hyaluronic acid benefits for hair
Given its name and its role as a humectant instead of a moisturizer, you might be surprised at how beneficial products with hyaluronic acid are. At stores, you might even find it listed under the acronym HA rather than under its full name. Here are 3 unexpected benefits to using hyaluronic-acid-based hair products!
1 – Hydrates your hair
You know by now that hyaluronic acid draws moisture from the air towards the hair, acting as a sponge. But it also seals in moisture from other products so your hair maintains its healthiness for a longer period of time. Oftentimes, hair that’s extremely dry is also more porous. The good thing, though, is that the acid will actually help seal these pores, so everyone can experience hydrated hair.
2 – Hydrates your scalp
A dry scalp can be difficult to manage. However, because hyaluronic acid attracts moisture and binds it to your scalp, it helps the collagen found in your skin and scalp to flourish. Products that contain both hyaluronic acid and collagen can be a great boon to anyone who suffers from stress-induced brittleness or environmental damage to their scalp.
3 – Slows hair loss
According to certified trichologist (a hair and scalp specialist ), Bridgette Hill, hyaluronic acid has the “ability to stimulate the creation of new blood vessels on the scalp [and] allows oxygen and nutrients to make it to the affected hair follicles that may be compromised due to health, genetic, dietary, stress, intake of medications, or chronic illness or disease.” Thus, by improving the function of cells on your scalp, the acid helps fight some common causes of hair loss at the root.
How to Use Hyaluronic Acid on Your Hair
Hyaluronic acid can be applied directly to your hair or as part of a haircare product. However, before you apply it directly, you should consult a licensed trichologist.
Hyaluronic Acid Know-Hows
For hyaluronic acid to be most effective, it needs to be left on the hair or scalp rather than immediately rinsed away. For that reason, it is best to choose hair products that don’t require instant rinsing, such as leave-in conditioners.
Shampoo and condition first
Haircare products like shampoo and conditioner that contain hyaluronic acid are not harmful. However, they are not the most efficient way to absorb the acid into your follicles or scalp. Instead, go through your normal haircare routine by shampooing and conditioning like normal. After you’ve washed your hair, you can then apply the acid while your hair is still damp.
Combine it with a home hair spa
Products that contain hyaluronic acid can be pricey. Rather than use it everyday, you might want to include it during occasional deep moisturizing treatments like a home hair spa. Combining the acid with oils like jojoba or argan can not only provide deep moisturization to your hair but also some much-needed hydration. Despite it being called an “acid”, the molecule actually functions very well with oils.
You can find many hair care products that contain hyaluronic acid. From conditioners to hair masks, the possibilities are endless. You may find that hyaluronic acid is your next great secret haircare ingredient.