Don’t Ignore pH Level in Skin and Hair Care Products – It Could Ruin Your Skin!
Updated: Apr 13, 2018
It's Friday, you're counting down the hours until it's the weekend... but wait, I have something to share with you! Learning has been a passion of mine, and every journey I venture into provides a learning experience, even creating skin and hair care. With that in mind, I'd like to share something really critical in your skin and hair care routine... pH. Huh?
Have you ever noticed in the product descriptions that there is a sentence that reads, "Balanced for the skin’s pH between 4.2 to 5.8." or another set of numbers? Let me explain how pH levels can either resolve or cause further distress to your skin and why I test every product for its pH balance.
Skin pH (This includes your scalp as that's skin too!)
Our skin is naturally designed to fight infection and environmental stresses and its ability to do so is affected by its pH level. The pH level of the skin refers to how acidic or alkaline it is. On a scale of 1-14, with 1 being the most acidic to 14 being the most alkaline, 7 is considered a neutral reading for your skin’s pH. Our skin has a thin, protective layer on its surface, referred to as the acid mantle. This acid mantle is made up of sebum (free fatty acids) excreted from the skin’s sebaceous glands, which mixes with lactic and amino acids from sweat to create the skin’s pH, which ideally should be slightly acidic – at about 5.5.
Many factors can interfere with the delicate balance of the skin’s acid mantle, both externally and internally. As we age, our skin becomes more acidic in response to our lifestyle and our environment. Everything that comes in contact with our skin (products, smoking, air, water, sun, pollution) can contribute to the breaking down of the acid mantle, disrupting the skin’s ability to protect itself. The acid mantle is an effective form of protection, but if your pH level is too alkaline or too acidic, the mantle is disturbed and skin conditions such as dermatitis, eczema, and rosacea may result.
As we age, the amount of oil or sebum naturally produced by our skin decreases, influencing the acid mantle and its ability to protect the skin. Using effective moisturizers helps rebuild this important barrier. Oils that work particularly well with the skin’s natural oil secretions include jojoba, coconut, argan and olive oils.
Topical antioxidants (vitamins A, C, E, and green tea) are important in maintaining the acid mantle in two ways. First, they fortify the cells, so they can function optimally and second, they protect the cells from environmental stresses and oxidation.
Once I understood Skin pH, I knew I had to adjust what I was using for my personal products. Now, I feel confident that the products I now share with you are good for your skin, and that makes me feel good, “Because your skin deserves love too!”
I can’t wait to share more with you soon.