Everybody’s dream is to have and maintain a glowing skin. To feel the happiness that causes a smile when you walk pass a mirror. You want to own a skin that will boost your confidence and make you walk into places easily, flaunting your skin everywhere you go. I’m talking about a skin that will make people to say “What’s your secret to a perfect skin” and maybe tell you that they are willing to pay.

You’ve looked for the best skin products recommendation and searched the entire store for the perfect product for your skin. You checked the top skin care blogs for tips and advices. In fact you have so much information that you can start your own beauty blogs and give plenty of advices about skin care.

You’ve probably taken an extra step by putting those advice into action; you use the best cleanser for your skin cleansing routine, you apply rich sunscreens and moisturizers with an extra layer. But yet; these skin products that seems to be doing the magic for everyone else is a rebel to your own skin.

It’s frustrating right? Yeah! I know. The pain of trying so hard but failing! You want a glowing skin so bad. What then could been the problem?

Here in this article an important factor that can be a reason why those skin products and your effort isn’t working will be discussed. This might be a breakthrough to getting your “dream skin”

Skin pH

You are familiar with the word “Skin”. I mean, that’s why you are here in the first place. You only want an extra information on how to have a skin that makes you feel and look better. You definitely don’t want the definition of skin. But what about you the ‘’pH’’. Or you already know what pH means, but I still don’t want to assume, so let’s dive straight into it.

What is pH?

This might bring back the memories of your high school chemistry lab sessions. The teacher walking up to the class and announcing that you were about to learn about pH. And then at the practical session, you were given strips that changes color when dipped into different liquid solution to determine the pH of each of the liquid solution.

That was a good memory. pH stands for potential of hydrogen. It has to do with hydrogen ion present in a solution.

pH value is a figure on the scale of 0 – 14 that states the acidity or basicity of a solution. When a solution’s pH falls below 7, it is considered to be acidic in nature. When the solution’s pH falls is above 7, it is basic in nature. And at 7 it is considered to be neutral as in the case of pure water.

On the pH scale the intensity of the pH nature (acidic or basic) depends on how far the figures are from the neutral point – 7. On acidic side of the pH scale (lesser than 7), the acidity at 2 is higher than that of 6.5. The basicity at 14 is higher than 8 at the basic side of the pH scale.

For example an apple juice has a pH value of 3.5 while a lemon juice has a pH value of 2, which makes a lemon juice more acidic than an apple juice.

You need to understand that the pH scale is logarithmic and therefore the difference in the value that seems small are significant and far apart in real sense.

What is Skin pH?

Now that you know what pH means, you would love to know how it applies to your skin.

Our skins have also has a pH value. That is, a value can be attributed to the skin on the pH scale which is determined by its acidity or basicity. However, our skin surface is acidic in nature. The upper layers of our skin including the skin surface is acidic. At birth we have a skin which is averagely neutral, which is neither acidic nor basic. But as we age and our skin begins to experience threats from the environment, it begin to turn acidic. This happens within few weeks after birth.

Skin is a very vital organ of our body that performs various important functions to keep us healthy. One of the important functions of the skin is to serve a protective barrier of our body from the environment. This skin performs this function by setting up a thin, protective surface known as the skin’s acid mantle

Skin’s acid mantle.

The skin’s acid mantle is composed of sebum, which is a form of fatty acids that is secreted by the sebaceous gland. The mantle together with other natural component of the skin surface such as sweat, enzymes, and the skin oil increases the acidity of the skin surface and protects the skin from external threats. It is slightly acidic and neutralises the effects of alkaline-based pollutants, and help keep the skin’s pH in balance to promote its natural qualities.

The skin’s acid mantle is responsible for the pH of your skin. Its acidic nature protects and shield the skin from environmental aggressors, bacteria and infections.  It also help to maintain the balance of the skin pH and keep it moisturized. The skin acid mantle helps prevent our skin from irritation and aging. The ability of the acid mantle to do this entire depends on its pH level, which is required to be kept at balance.

The average adult skin has a pH between 4.5 and 6.2 which makes it acidic in nature. Its values varies for different parts of the body. Areas such as the thighs, armpit and genital parts which are less exposed to the environment have a different pH value compared to the frequently exposed parts of the bod such as the face, hands and chest. Armpit for example are less exposed to air and light which causes the pH level to go up the scale to about 6.5. Its high basic state makes it prone to bacteria which can lead to bad odour. The genital parts of the body is affected in a similar way as the armpit. The pH ranges from one person to another owing to a number of factors.

Internal factors that affects skin’s pH

Some of the internal factors that affects the acidity of our skin as individuals include

  1. Gender. The pH of our skin can be determined by our gender also. There a slight difference between the average pH of a male to a female skin. The male skin has an average pH that is slightly lower to that of a female. Which means that a male ski is more acidic compared to a female skin. This is owing to the fact that the skin of a male is experiences more production of sebum (natural skin oil) than a female’s skin.

These factors alter the pH level of our skin and makes it vary from one person to another. The conditions are favourable when they help to keep the pH of your skin at a healthy state. To maintain a healthy state the skin pH shouldn’t be too basic, neither should it be too acidic which brings about the idea of skin pH balance.

What is skin pH balance?

For the skin to serve effectively as a protection from external threat it needs to achieve an ideal pH which is neither too acidic nor basic. The natural skin pH level should be average of 4.7 prior to exposure to water (which has a higher pH level) and cosmetics. At this range, the skin is able to perform its functions well by fighting aggressors and harmful bacteria. There is improvement in the skin micro flora which is essential for the natural flourishing of the skin. At balance the skin is plump, smooth and hydrated with gives it a glowing look.

But when external activities and agents come in contact with the skin acid mantle and causes it to shift away from balance, the skin loses its ability to be protected and is prone to attacks. This happens when the skin pH level becomes very acidic or basic shifting away from the ideal range. If your skin is dry and sensitive to irritation, then it may be too basic. When it is oily and you experience more breakouts, your skin may be too acidic.

This can be caused by internal factor and the agents that come in contact directly with the skin. Tap water for example has a higher pH level which is closer the alkaline side. When tap water is introduced to the skin, it displaces it from balance by increasing the skin basicity and reducing its ability to protect itself from external threat. The effect of this is dryness and irritation in the skin which may lead to skin conditions like acne, wrinkling and aging.

External factors that affects your skin pH are;

  1. Environmental factors. Your environment has a direct impact on your skin. The nature of the air around you can stress the skin and disturb the skin’s acid mantle. Changes in humidity and temperature may reduce sebum production and increases dehydration of the skin and make it more alkaline in nature. This causes the skin pH to deviate from balance and make it prone to skin conditions.

These poor skin care habits will weaken your skin acid mantle and make it lose it acidity and protection.

These factors tends to increase the basicity of the skin by reducing its acidity and moving it up the pH scale. When this happens the natural balance of the skin is disrupted and the skin is posed to damage.

9 Signs that your skin pH is unbalanced

When these factors affects the skin and displaces it from balance, the effects of highly alkaline skin sets in and the health of the skin is compromised. These symptoms shows that your skin pH balance is compromised.

  1. Acne. Acne can be a big threat to your fair complexion and beauty. With a weaken skin acid mantle, you may be prone to experience more outbreaks which may be in form of blackheads, whitehead, pimples and cysts. Although, acne is a normal psychological condition, it may be triggered or worsen by the change in the skin pH.

How to restore your skin pH balance

  1. Use moisturizers. With age being an inevitable factor, biological age affects the natural production of oil by sebum) our skin. The reduction in the amount of oils may affect the skin’s acid mantle and throw the skin’s pH off balance. To protect the skin’s acid mantle, you should apply a good moisturizer to your skin regularly. The moisturizers will help rebuild and protect the skin’s acid mantle. It is necessary you get a moisturiser that suits your skin perfectly.
  1. Eat healthy diet. For your skin to be healthy and function properly, it needs to be well nourished. This isn’t only about what put on your skin from the surface, it also has to do with what it get from inside. Our skin requires essential nutrients such as antioxidants in form of spinach, watermelon and berries. This will help to protect and nourish the natural barrier of the skin and protect it from damage. The body’s pH influences the skin pH, therefore it is necessary for your body pH to be in balance, so that you can have a balanced skin pH. Foods that are acidic in nature before consumption increases the body alkalinity after digestion. Lemon for example is in alkaline form when digested by the body. Alkaline foods help to keep the blood pH in balance and allow better absorption of nutrient that benefits the skin.

Maintaining a skin pH balance is big move to owning a great skin. You can easily monitor your skin health and get recommendations when your skin pH in in balance.

Benefits of a balanced skin pH

  1. Anti-aging benefits. When you skin’s acid mantle is reinforced by the balanced pH level of the skin. The acid mantle provide maximum protection from the environmental aggressors that promotes aging. The skin is free from pollutants and oxidative stress, hereby reducing wrinkles and premature aging.

Getting your pH in balance is a consistent practice that yield results. The conscious effort you take towards maintain your skin pH gives the best results. You can determine the pH level of your skin with the use of test strips that can be conveniently used at home. The pH kits has paper strips that can be applied to your skin to determine its present pH level. Knowing your skin’s pH level will enable you to understand how to care for your skin better. It will help you in deciding what skin product is suitable for your skin and to also determine if your skin is off balance.

Another way you can determine your skin pH level is to pay a visit to a dermatologist. A dermatologist will have a more accurate and specific means of determining your skin pH and giving you professional advice as regards your skin.

An important way to track your success in getting a balanced skin pH is observe your skin carefully frequently. Symptoms that may suggest that your skin is too alkaline such as irritation, dryness and redness such be noticed and corrected at once.

6 Responses

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