What is pH?
pH is an abbreviation of 'potential Hydrogen.' This scale is used to measure the acidity or alkalinity of your skin level. Solutions with a pH balance of 7 are neutral, solutions with a lower pH are acidic, and solutions with a higher pH are alkaline. Because our bodies have an internal pH that needs to be maintained somewhere between 4.4 (acidic) and 6.8 (alkaline), it's understandable that we should try to maintain that balance externally.
Skin pH is a critical factor in determining skin type and proper skin care regimen. But what exactly is skin pH? Do you know your skin pH? Most of us don't. Skin pH is the measure of the acidity (lower number) or alkalinity (higher number) of your skin, and Low-pH level on the surface of the skin is good for your health. A person's skin is acidic by nature, with a pH that ranges from 4.2 - 6.0. Your skin becomes damaged when the acidity is outside that range (either too acidic or too alkaline).
Skin's pH level is vital for many reasons. First, it helps the skin to retain moisture properly. Healthy skin can help to keep your body temperature normal because of its ability to sweat and send out the correct signals to the brain. It also protects you from harmful substances that might enter your body through your pores or other entrance points.
The skin's pH level can vary based on several factors such as Skin type:
- Different skin types have different pH levels. Dry and sensitive skin types usually have a lower pH level than oily and normal skin types.
pH Level for each Skin Type:
Normal skin: 4.4-6
Oily skin: 4.2-5
Sensitive skin: 4.6-5
Dry skin: 5.0-6.8
- Environmental factors: Environmental factors such as pollution, the use of cosmetics and soaps, and weather conditions can all affect the skin's pH level
- Daily routine: Habits such as washing your face with soap and water right after waking up can also affect your skin's pH level.
- Influence of diet: However, if you're eating an unhealthy diet (sugar, processed foods, soda), you won't have enough of the nutrients your body needs to produce acids that maintain your body's natural pH level. This will throw off your body's acidity levels and affect the pH of your skin. The food you eat has a direct impact on the health of your skin and its acidity levels. That's because what you consume directly affects the health of your bloodstream and organs' health, including your liver, which produces bile that helps maintain healthy skin pH levels. When your liver isn't healthy enough to produce enough bile, it can cause an imbalance in the production of acids that help to maintain proper skin pH levels.
Maintaining a healthy skin pH level will help with the following:
- Keeps the oil glands balanced
- Helps prevent acne
- Reduces inflammation in your skin
- Protects from free radical damage
- Helps heal blemishes more quickly
- Treats dry skin
How to keep your skin's pH level balanced
Restoring your skin's pH level requires repairing its barrier function, and this helps maintain the hydration levels of your skin and keeps it radiant and glowing. Here are some things you can do:
- Avoid using soap in the morning when you wake up and in the evening when you go to bed
- Use a mild cleanser in the evening only
- Wear a sunblock to protect your face from getting damaged by UV rays and pollution in the air
- Apple cider vinegar does a great job of regulating your skin's pH levels. Ideally, dilute it with water in the proportion of 1:4 before applying it to your face.
- Relook at your diet. Add antioxidant-rich foods, such as leafy vegetables (spinach is good for your health and your skin) and fruits (opt for low sugar fruits such as banana, berries, and watermelon) while cutting down or totally avoiding processed food and your sugar intake.
Good skin is gorgeous. To have good skin is to have a kind of beauty that is purer, deeper, and richer than anything else. You can't get more natural than good, healthy skin. But if your skin isn't in optimal condition, it can impact how you feel about yourself, so it's essential to have one that looks great. So before you go on that diet, or try that new anti-aging cream, or implement any other change to your daily routine, remember pH balance starts with the proper care for your body.