You may recall pH from science class- the measurement of a substance’s acidity or alkalinity. Did you know your skin has its own pH that is important to be maintained, though? Using the wrong cleansers can disrupt your skin’s natural pH, which can keep your anti-aging skincare from working effectively.
The pH scale ranges between two extremes, measured from 0-14. Solutions with an acidic pH range from 0 to 6, and solutions with a basic or alkaline pH range from 8-10. The neutral pH of 7 is reserved for a substance that is considered neither alkaline nor acidic, like pure water.
Your Skin’s pH
Your body tends to operate at the neutral pH of 7. Your skin acts as a protective barrier for your body, so it tends to be slightly more acidic at a pH of 5.5.
The Acid Mantle
The acid mantle is a thin film on the surface of the skin that serves as the very first line of protection against pathogens entering your body. The acid mantle is named after its inherent acidity, and it is very important to keeping your skin’s acid mantle intact. When you disrupt the acid mantle, it can damage your skin and susceptible to infection.
So why does this matter? For one, if your skin is at a normal pH, it can effectively retain moisture and protect your skin from outside agents that can cause premature aging. Additionally, a recent study conducted over eight years found that women with more alkaline skin (a pH of 7 or higher) tend to have more fine lines and crows feet than women with more acidic skin.
Lastly, if you apply your anti-aging skincare to skin that is the incorrect pH, the active ingredients won’t have a chance to work properly. You can disrupt your skin’s pH by scrubbing it with a cleanser that is too alkaline (a pH of 6 or higher). It can take up to 16 hours for your skin’s acid mantle to return to normal after being disrupted. So, it is important to use a cleanser that ranges from a pH of 4-4.9. Anti-aging skin care should range from 3-3.9 for the best results.
If you have concerns about your current anti-aging skin care products or would like some recommendations on approved skin care products, contact Zimmet Vein and Dermatology today.