Is Squalane Low-Key more hydrating than hyaluronic acid?

Squalane and hyaluronic acid are two of the hottest skin-care ingredients these days, with both appearing in everything from serums to face washes, moisturizers, and more.

Both are moisturizing ingredients, but they have different properties and functions, and depending on your needs, you may find that one is better suited for your routine.

To answer all your burning questions about squalane vs. hyaluronic acid, we turned to two dermatologists. Read on to learn what's unique about each feature, which one is best for you, and whether you can use them together.

What is squalane? Squalane is a laboratory-developed, hydrogenated form of squalene, which is "a naturally occurring lipid component of sebum that moisturizes the skin," says Blair, MD, FAAD, a board-certified cosmetic and

medical dermatologist.

Blair Murphy-Rose said. "Squalane is an emollient that softens and smoothes the skin and helps retain skin moisture. [It] protects and supports the skin barrier and has antioxidant properties that can reverse and prevent free

radical damage."

If you're wondering how squalane differs from squalene, Murphy-Rose explains that the former is designed to provide the skin benefits of squalene while making it more durable.

This makes squalane more suitable for use in skin care because squalene is an unstable molecule. As we age, our natural production of squalene decreases.

So if you find your skin becomes dry over time, these ingredients may help. “Squalane is also lighter than squalene, so unlike squalene, it’s better suited for acne-prone skin,” adds Murphy-Rose.

What is hyaluronic acid? Hyaluronic acid is a hydrating molecule that can attract and retain up to 1,000 times its weight in water.

"It's a natural ingredient in the skin, eyes and joints, where it acts as a humectant or something that draws moisture into the skin," says Rebecca Marcus, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Maei MD said the MD.

Hyaluronic acid has an immediate plumping effect on the skin and can reduce the appearance of fine lines. This makes this hydrophilic ingredient very popular, and you'll almost certainly see some brands highlighting that their

serums or moisturizers contain this powerful yet gentle acid.

Squalane vs. Hyaluronic Acid: The Differences. Murphy-Ross tells us that the main difference between squalane and hyaluronic acid is their chemical makeup and the way they moisturize the skin. Here's a little science lesson to

explain it:

"Squalane is a lipid and hyaluronic acid is a glycosaminoglycan (basically a chain of sugar molecules)," says Marcus. "Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, which draws moisture into the skin, while squalene is an emollient, meaning

it acts as a barrier, locking moisture in the skin."

Still, just because they work differently doesn't mean the two ingredients don't have a lot in common. "Both help keep skin healthy and hydrated," says Murphy-Rose. "Both are hypoallergenic and generally suitable for sensitive


"Both are hydrating molecules that help increase skin moisture levels," adds Marcus. "They both occur naturally in the body. Well, almost — squalene is naturally occurring, and squalane is a chemically modified form."

Whether squalane or hyaluronic acid is better for you depends on you. "Both are very effective ingredients that are suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin," says Murphy-Rose.

"Hyaluronic acid is great for moisturizing oily or acne-prone skin because it's lightweight and brings moisture to the skin's surface without clogging pores. Squalane is a very effective ingredient for moisturizing dry skin, but

It can also be used in formulas that won’t aggravate acne.”

Frequency of use depends on product type, such as B. serum, lotion or moisturizer. However, Murphy-Rose generally recommends using it once or twice daily. "Both work well in creams and lotions," she says.

Can squalane and hyaluronic acid be used together? Yes, you can use squalane and hyaluronic acid together, whether using separate products or trying a formula that contains both. "If used alone, hyaluronic acid should be applied

first as it draws moisture into the skin," advises Marcus.

"The addition of squalane creates a barrier that keeps skin hydrated and prevents water from evaporating." last snack Ultimately, hyaluronic acid and squalane are excellent skin care ingredients that provide benefits for most

skin types.

Since each ingredient helps replenish your skin's natural hydration process, both are great options if you're struggling with dryness or dehydration—just make sure you find a formula that's right for your overall skin type.

"Both are great for dry skin, acne-prone skin, inflamed skin, and even sensitive skin," says Marcus. "It really comes down to personal preference."

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