Balance is the key to flawless skin
Turns out understanding the pH scale isn’t just for high school science class. Find out how balancing your skin’s pH can get you the gorgeous, radiant skin of your dreams.
We all want a flawless complexion, but many of us struggle with skin issues like acne, redness, and dehydration. The fact is, if you experience consistent skin problems, you probably have unbalanced pH levels in your skin. We turned to the experts to get the scoop on how pH levels affect the skin, and learn about what you can do to restore your skin’s optimal balance.
The acid mantle: our skin’s natural armor
The acid mantle refers to the fine, slightly acidic film of amino acids and oils that are secreted by our sebaceous glands. They sit on the surface of our skin and act as a barrier from harmful bacteria, pollutants, and viruses that contribute to irritation and premature aging. However, in order to function optimally, the acid mantle requires a particular pH index...
The pH scale: a scientific perspective
The pH scale employs a range of 1 to 14 to measure hydrogen concentration. Anything under 7 is considered acidic, whereas anything greater than 7 is considered alkaline (or basic). Skin that falls within the alkaline range tends to be on the dry side, and consequently, more prone to developing fine lines and premature wrinkles. On the other hand, skin that’s too acidic is more susceptible to breakouts and will often appear blotchy and irritated. While the former is typically more common, there’s a magic number we should all be aiming for: 5.5 (ever so slightly acidic)!
What affects our skin’s pH levels?
Many behaviors we might consider innocuous - both internal and external - can interfere with the delicate pH balance of our skin’s acid mantle. Poor diet, excessive alcohol consumption, washing with water that’s too hot, over-exfoliating, and using cleansers with harsh foaming agents, can all disrupt the optimal pH level of our skin. Aging also plays a role, as mature skin is often more acidic and responsive to environmental factors.
The perfect balance
Generally, your skin’s behavior should give you a good indication of your relative pH level. If you experience dryness, your skin is probably too alkaline. Conversely, if you struggle with acne, your skin leans too acidic. Skin that registers around 5.5 typically has the perfect balance, and as a result, has a plump, even, and glowing appearance.
Trying to achieve the proper pH balance should be the basis of any skincare routine Skin that has an optimal pH level can better absorb the anti-aging ingredients, antioxidants, and other beneficial vitamins and minerals in our skincare products. To put it simply, whatever you do to your skin topically will have a better result when you restore your pH balance first.
We recommend using Life Plankton Essence as the basis of any skincare regimen. The ultra-penetrative, pH-balanced formula hydrates the skin and gives it a perfect canvas to facilitate optimal effectiveness of the products layered over top. Furthermore, this miracle formula, which contains 35 nutrients, proteins, vitamins and amino acids, to name a few, regenerates skin to leave it glowing, more even, and smoother day after day.
Restoring the balance
From a skincare perspective, it’s best to use a cleanser that’s free of harsh detergents as they are typically very alkaline and thus, create an environment that is favorable for acne causing bacteria. If your skin has a tight, squeaky-clean feeling after you wash your face, your cleanser is likely doing more harm than good. Oil-based cleansers such as the Biosource Total Renew Oil are much gentler on the acid mantle, thereby enabling the skin to restore its natural balance. Plus, the mild and nourishing formula will remove makeup and purify the skin without distorting your pH levels.
It’s also important to use a moisturizer that works with the skin’s natural oils like the Life Plankton Sensitive Emulsion. The formula pairs perfectly with the Essence as it helps soothe and heal the skin, while reinforcing and rebuilding its natural protective barrier.
Researches from the University of Alberta have found that eating a more alkaline diet will help to foster good health and ultimately more radiant skin. Alkaline-rich foods such as leafy green vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds contain abundant amounts of the precise vitamins and minerals that benefit the skin and help foster strengthened immunity and improved digestion. They also suggest minimizing consumption of foods with high acidity levels such as caffeine, refined sugars, dairy, and red meat, as they can negatively impact the skin.
Remember that regardless of your particular area of concern, pH balancing your skin plays a fundamental role in its overall health and appearance.