- HA serums are a powerful source of hydration in preventing and treating dry, wrinkly skin.
- Serums are unique in that they have a high concentration of active ingredients in small molecular weights that allow for better absorption.
- Homemade HA serums are considerably easy and cost-effective to make.
- DIY HA serums are effective when sourcing and combining quality ingredients that are suitable for your skin type.
HA serum can improve skin elasticity, have a plumping effect, reduce the appearance of fine lines, and slow signs of aging.
Creating an HA serum at home is a relatively simple process. Your ability to source quality ingredients will play an important role in whether your DIY serum is effective or not.
When creating an HA serum, it’s important to remember that the skin’s ability to absorb this ingredient is key. Applying HA in low molecular weights of 20-300 kDa is necessary to enhancing the skin’s moisture and elasticity, as well as decreasing the depth of wrinkles.
Why Make Your Own Hyaluronic Acid Serum?
What makes HA serum so effective is not only it’s powerful hydrating property, but that it combines well with several other skincare ingredients. This versatile and tailorable feature makes DIY HA serums especially favorable.
- HA serums attract and lock in moisture to restore the outermost layer of the skin’s surface.
- The hydrating power of HA effectively combats the appearance of fine lines and deep wrinkles.
- HA also possesses antioxidant properties that can protect skin from environmental elements which are some of the culprits of sagging and wrinkles.
- HA is effective for all skin types, however for best results, it’s important to use a product with ingredients that work for your skin type.
Here are some ingredients to incorporate into your DIY HA serum depending on your skin type or desired treatment:
- Vitamins C – offers a range of benefits from evening skin tone and reducing dark spots to improving hydration, combating the signs of aging, and facilitating wound healing.
- Vitamins A and E – combat the effects of free-radicals and anti-inflammatory properties, foster collagen production, heal damaged skin, and can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
- Retinoids – a form of Vitamin A that can help combat acne, reduce wrinkles, stimulate collagen production, and promote cell turnover.
- Rose Water – for its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Peptides – aka amino acids, which trigger the production of key proteins within the skin. Most notably, collagen, which gives skin its suppleness and thickness.
- Ceramides – similar to HA in that they protect the skin and help retain moisture.
- Niacinamide – a form of vitamin B3 that helps reduce the size of pores, as well as improve skin tones, fine lines and wrinkles, and thinning skin.
The potential downside to homemade HA serums is quality and potency control, which are essentially key to this skincare products efficacy.
DIY Hyaluronic Acid Serum Recipes
There are many DIY recipes available, each with varying degrees of difficulty. Most important is the quality and combinations of ingredients, which will ultimately affect the efficacy and range of benefits for your particular skin type.
HA serums should be applied to clean, damp skin. Let the serum absorb fully, then continue with your preferred skincare routine. If not applied to damp skin, HA can have the opposite effect and dehydrate the skin.
Water-based HA serum
- Small clean jar with lid
- 1/4 cup distilled water
- 1/2 teaspoon hyaluronic acid powder
- 1/4 teaspoon glycerin (optional)
- 1/4 teaspoon liquid preservative (optional)
- Mix HA powder with distilled water (and glycerin/preservative if using).
- Cover the jar and shake well.
- Keep in the fridge for several hours until it thickens. The consistency should become more smooth as the HA absorbs the water.
HA Serum with Vitamin C
Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin C are often paired together. Vitamin C has been proven to have an anti-aging effect when used in concentrations between 5 and 15%. In addition to the anti-aging benefits Vitamin C and HA, Vitamin C can also brighten skin, reduce inflammation and the appearance of dark spots, and fight free-radicals.
- 1 tsp pure L-ascorbic acid Vitamin C powder
- 3 tsp of distilled water
- 1 tsp pre-made HA
- Mix all ingredients in a glass bowl
- Funnel into a glass bottle with a spray nozzle
HA serum with rose water
Rose water is a popular ingredient in skincare due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Pairing your DIY HA serum with rose water can help reduce acne, skin puffiness and redness while offering the powerful hydrating benefits of HA.
- 1 teaspoon hyaluronic acid powder with a low molecular weight
- 1/2 cup hydrosol (rose or regular)
- 1/2 teaspoon food-grade glycerine
- 2 drops rose essential aromatherapy oil
- A glass dropper bottle
- Mix the hyaluronic powder and hydrosol in a glass jar
- Add the glycerine and rose essential oil and mix well
- Close the jar and refrigerate for 4 hours so the serum can hydrate
- Serum should be kept in the refrigerator as it does not contain a preservative
A Word About Storage
Preservatives, and specifically broad-spectrum preservatives play an important role in preventing the growth of bacteria, mold, and yeast.
Should you decide to incorporate a broad spectrum preservative, your serum can have a shelf life up for up to three months stored at room temperature.
If you opt to forgo adding a preservative, you would need to store your homemade HA serum in the refrigerator for a shelf life up to three weeks.
If you opt for OTC products, look for serums with at least 0.1% HA as well as products containing HA with a range of low molecular weights as nano-sized HA can penetrate the skin more effectively which is key.
DIY HA serums offer a cost-effective means of creating a customized, intensely hydrating skincare product. The ultimate advantage here is that you have full control of the ingredients which can be tailored precisely to your skin type and skincare needs.
- Ganceviciene, R., Liakou, A. I., Theodoridis, A., Makrantonaki, E., & Zouboulis, C. C. (2012). Skin anti-aging strategies. Dermato-endocrinology, 4(3), 308–319. doi:10.4161/derm.22804
- M. Essendoubi C. Gobinet R. Reynaud J. F. Angiboust M. Manfait O. Piot. (2015). Human skin penetration of hyaluronic acid of different molecular weights as probed by Raman spectroscopy. Skin Research & Technology. (22)1, 55-62. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/srt.12228
- Pavicic, T., Gagulitz, GG., Lersch, P., Schwach-Abdellaoui, K., Malle, B., Korting, HC., Farwick, M. (2011) Efficacy of cream-based novel formulations of hyaluronic acid of different molecular weights in anti-wrinkle treatment. J Drugs Dermatol, 10(9), 990-1000. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22052267