What Exactly Is The Moisture Barrier?

August 11, 2021

What exactly is the moisture barrier?

The skin’s moisture barrier also known as the acid mantle, or the stratum corneum acts as a barrier to bacteria, viruses and other contaminants. It also is an environment for key skin enzymes to function properly, specifically, enzymes involved in lipid and ceramide synthesis.

What does “acidic” mean?

Acidity refers to the pH and a pH of 7 is considered a neutral pH, and is that of water. A pH below 7 is acidic and a pH above 7 is alkaline. The skin’s acidity was first documented in the 20s-30s, and can vary depending on the specific site. The acidic environment is a combination of sebum, sweat and desquamation. An aberrant pH of the stratum corneum has been linked to skin diseases, such as acne, atopic dermatitis, icthyosis, and psoriasis. Interestingly, when we are born, our skin’s pH is roughly 7.08. Within the first few days of life, the pH becomes more acidic and normalizes. The pH of the stratum corneum of the skin is normally 4.5 to 6.2. There is a steep increase to 7-9 when you get into the epidermis and then dermis. Too many alkaline products (products with a high pH) can disrupt this normal acidic barrier and cause breakdown. Absorption of many products, specifically L-ascorbic acid or vitamin c, are better with a lower or more acidic pH. Other things that can cause breakdown include over exfoliation, sun damage, allergens and pollutants, steroids, and even genetics.

What does a damaged skin barrier look like?

The skin appears red, raw, itchy, dull and/or dry.  There may be obvious inflammation.

How do we heal a damaged moisture barrier?

Occlusive agents, such as petrolatum, help seal the skin’s barrier to prevent interruption by bacteria and other organisms. This facilitates moisture retention and healing. Moisturizers with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and ceramides help replenish the moisture content. Ceramides are waxy lipids that are an integral part of the stratum corneum of the skin.  Keep the routine SIMPLE to facilitate healing.

We recommend keeping your skin care routine simple, and incorporating hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid serum. We suggest trying our powerhouse serum Formule Jeunesse: Innovative Anti-Aging Formula. This supreme formula harbors a powerful relationship between Copper, Hyaluronic Acid, Essential Amino Acids and Niacinamide to impeccably hydrate, brighten and directly address the signs of aging, including improving fine lines and wrinkles.

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