Most of us associate the term “pH” with Chemistry classes, our memories flitting back to days in the lab playing with the changing colors of liquids in a variety of beakers.
In fact, the extent of our knowledge regarding the word “pH” stopped at understanding that it stood for “potential hydrogen”, and that it was used to describe just how acidic or alkaline a product was: the most acidic measuring at a 1, and the most alkaline at a 14, whilst 7 was neutral.
Never did we realize or anticipate the importance of its role in the functioning of our bodies and our skin’s health. When we consume unhealthy food or use incompatible products, our deteriorating complexion is normally the first sign we get that our skin’s pH levels are imbalanced.
What is the perfect pH to achieve for our skin, then, you might ask?
Our skin’s barrier, also known as the acid mantle, works best at a slightly acidic 5.5pH balance. When it is at that ideal level, the skin is able to keep in the “good oils” and moisture excellently, whilst keeping out UV rays, pollution, toxins and bacteria.
However, when the pH leans too much to the alkaline side, our skin becomes dry and sensitive, occasionally resulting in flaking or eczema. Irritations can also strike during this period, which slows down the skin’s ability to ward off enzymes that can destroy collagen, thereby causing wrinkles and sagging.
It is rarer for skin to be overly acidic; however, when it happens, the result is enlarged pores, blackheads, and acne.
Thus, equalizing the skin is truly of utmost importance. Do not worry though, because that balance is easily attained with a healthy diet of fresh fruits, vegetables, and at least 8 cups of water a day. Needless to say, having a reliable skincare regimen that works well is also necessary.
Often times, many tend to run for the hills the moment they hear “skincare regimen” as they assume that a dependable skincare product will end up costing an arm and a leg. This does not have to be the case. In fact, a simple 4 step (cleanser, toner, serum and moisturizer) system is more than sufficient.
First, begin with a mild, or pH 5.5, cleanser so as to ensure skin is cleansed gently but effectively. Avoid using soaps which lean to the alkaline side and do not over wash your skin as water has a pH level of 7. Follow through with an alcohol-free toner so as to maintain the acid balance as well.
Including a serum may be an extraneous step for some but using one such as our Balance, Sebum Control Essence (R.P. $41) will, in fact, be tremendously beneficial. It not only hydrates skin and controls oil in the short run, it also slowly but surely balances out the skin in the long run. After a few months of usage, one should already experience a smoother, softer and more balanced skin texture.
All that is needed is a hydrating moisturizer as a finishing touch, so that skin remains constantly moisturized and is able to repair itself against aggressions over the day.
By following through with these steps, achieving that balance will be a breeze.