Most of us associate the term “pH” with Chemistry classes. Our memories flit back to lab days and playing with the changing colors of liquids. For most, our knowledge of pH stopped at understanding that it stands for “potential hydrogen”. Plus that it’s used to describe how acidic or alkaline a product is. And maybe that the most acidic measures a 1, the most alkaline a 14, and neutral is a 7.
Never did we realize or anticipate its importance in our skin’s health. When we consume unhealthy food or use incompatible products, our deteriorating complexion is normally the first sign of imbalanced pH levels.
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 retain the “good oils” and moisture well while 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. This slows down the skin’s ability to ward off enzymes that can destroy collagen, thereby causing wrinkles and sagging.
As for when the skin is overly acidic? Expect enlarged pores, blackheads, and acne.
Thus, equalizing the skin is of utmost importance. That balance is easily attained with a 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.
A balanced skincare regimen
Often times, many run for the hills once they hear “skincare regimen” as they assume an effective one will cost an arm and a leg. Not true! In fact, a simple 4-step system (cleanser, toner, serum and moisturizer) 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 nor over wash your skin (water has a pH level of 7). Follow through with an alcohol-free toner to maintain the acid balance as well.
Including a serum such as our Balance, Sebum Control Essence (R.P. $41) will be tremendously beneficial. It not only hydrates skin and controls oil in the short run, but also slowly balances out the skin in the long run. After a few months, one should experience a smoother, softer and more balanced skin texture.
Finally, use a hydrating moisturizer as a finishing touch. This keeps your skin remains constantly moisturized and ups its ability to repair itself against aggressions over the day.
By following through with these steps, achieving that balance will be a breeze.