According to Google search terms research showing searches for “hydrating skincare” currently +86% vs last year and “dehydrated skin” being searched over 2,900 times a month, it has never been more important to ensure education on what helps boost and keep skin hydrated to target these increasing concerns.
It’s no secret that hyaluronic acid is a real skincare stalwart. We’ve all heard of it, mostly because it’s constantly being praised for its incredible water retention skills – but there’s an ingredient that’s equally as noteworthy and is just as impressive (and yet, for some reason, it doesn’t quite get the same level of attention.) That’s why we’ve decided to give it some of the praise it deserves. The ingredient in question? Glycerin.
“Glycerin, also known as glycerol, is a naturally occurring hydrator found in lipid form,” explains Dr Ifeoma Ejikeme, General Medicine Consultant and Expert Aesthetic Physician.
It’s a real hero within CeraVe products but it’s also something that, until now, we’ve probably taken for granted a bit too much.“Glycerin very much acts as the natural moisturising factor of the skin. It’s inexpensive but we rarely hear about it because it is overshadowed by hyaluronic acid,” confirms Dr Ejikeme.
Glycerin versus hyaluronic acid
If we were to do a direct comparison of the two, it’s definitely worth knowing that they are both humectants that work by attracting and holding water, and so – in theory – they are quite similar, but they’re not exactly the same.
The biggest difference between the two is molecule size. Glycerin is much smaller, meaning it has the ability to penetrate much deeper into the skin, plus that makes it much easier to absorb. Glycerin also has the added benefit of being better at increasing skin’s overall hydration levels, something which – over time – decreases water loss, thus making it a better choice for those with dehydrated skin.
A real unsung hero
Scientifically speaking, there are no benefits that hyaluronic acid has that glycerin doesn’t; products with glycerin are just as worthwhile and will work just as hard. However, aside from molecule size, there are some other advantages of glycerin.
One of the biggest is that glycerin has the added ability of being able to help protect skin against irritation, as well as speeding up the natural wound healing process, plus it’s even been shown to have antimicrobial properties. Glycerin is also oil-free and non-comedogenic, so anybody with acne-prone or oily skin types can benefit from incorporating it into their routine.
Glycerin also really comes into its own in the colder months, too, which is why it’s a core ingredient in CeraVe Moisturising Cream. Formulated in CeraVe’s unique way – which champions formulation and combines glycerin with ceramides and MVE technology. This means CeraVe helps to lock in moisture while also protecting against the damaging effects of things like cold wind and dry indoor air, something that’s caused by having the central heating on.
CeraVe Moisturising Cream, €17.00 (454g) or €14.00 (340g) available from local pharmacies nationwide, instore and online.