Why is the pH level of your skin so important?
When your skin is at a good pH level, your skin is able to better defend itself against the bacteria, impurities and pollutants that it is constantly exposed. Also known as the acid mantle, this is essentially a layer that protects against outside invaders. Generally, the pH balance of skin ranges anywhere from 4 to 6.5, with 5.5 being the happy medium. At this level, the acid mantle is slightly acidic, which is ideal. Things that determine the pH balance of your skin include fatty acids, free amino acids and lactic acids. If you’ve got a serious case of acne, your skin may be too alkaline (the opposite of acidic).
YOUR SKIN’S PH BALANCE AND DIET
Your diet plays a great role in determining your internal and external pH levels, although the pH of food is not the same as the food’s acid or alkaline formation in the body. For example, animal products, which are alkaline before digestion, raise acidity levels in the body after consumption.
A healthy diet to optimize the pH level of your skin includes the following foods:
In addition to acne, other skin conditions that result from an overly acidic or alkaline pH level are rosacea, eczema and dermatitis.
Generally, cleansers such as detergent soaps and bars are too alkaline for the skin and can cause dryness and irritation. To maintain a healthy acid mantle, you should use mild cleansers and toners that are slightly acidic but not overly so. Overly harsh ingredients can weaken your skin’s natural defenses, making it more prone to bacterial infection. That’s why it’s important to first have a professional evaluation performed by our Master Medical Aesthetician to determine which products are good for your skin.
In general, you can maintain a good acid mantle by using products that contain topical antioxidants such as vitamins A, C and E. These antioxidants can fortify the cells and protect them from environmental stresses and oxidation.
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