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Ferulic acid is an antioxidant phytochemical naturally produced by certain plants to help them thrive and protect them from predators and pathogens. It is found in apples, orange seeds, and the cell walls of oats, brown rice, peanuts, and some vegetables.
Working in tandem with other antioxidants, it can help prevent skin aging—fine lines, wrinkles, brown spots, and sagging skin—and shield the skin against free-radical damage from pollution, UV light, and infrared radiation. Additional benefits include reducing inflammation, which blocks pores and can lead to breakouts, and minimizing dark spots from those breakouts. It can also help reduce redness and pigmentation from melasma, a common condition that causes dark, discolored patches on the skin.
According to the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, “Ferulic acid not only provides increased stability to a solution of vitamins C+E, but also adds a substantial synergistic photoprotection, essentially doubling its efficacy. Moreover it provides additional … prevention of skin cancer.”
Ferulic acid is available as a dietary supplement, which doesn’t appear to have the same potency for skin health as topical serums that contain it. However, studies suggest that supplemental ferulic acid may be helpful for people with diabetes and pulmonary hypertension. More research is being done on its potential uses for Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular disease.
The Best Way to Use Ferulic Acid
For optimal effectiveness, ferulic acid should come packaged in a dark or opaque bottle to protect it from light, and should be stored in a cool place (not a steamy bathroom). Don’t use ferulic acid with exfoliating acids, including glycolic, lactic, and salicylic acids because they can alter the pH of your skin, which then changes the effectiveness of the antioxidant. Rather, use exfoliating acids at night and products with ferulic acid in the morning.
Amp up the anti-aging power of vitamin C with Acure Brightening Vitamin C & Ferulic Acid Oil Free Serum. Pineapple and papaya extracts in this creamy serum contain enzymes that help to gently exfoliate, brighten, and protect skin from pollution. Antibacterial matcha tea helps reduce inflammation, evens skin tone, and increases elasticity.
Lift, firm, and tighten skin with Derma E Ferulic Acid Resurfacing Pads. These single-use, presoaked cotton pads deep-clean and remove dead and dull skin cells for a gentle peel that leaves skin noticeably smooth. In addition to ferulic acid, antioxidant resveratrol firms and strengthens skin while kojic acid from mushrooms brightens and helps fade discoloration. DMAE, a derivative of the B vitamin choline, helps tighten and tone skin.
Protect and preserve your skin with Mad Hippie Advanced Skin Care Vitamin C Serum. Ferulic acid combined with vitamins C & E increases the protective antioxidant effect of this serum, reducing wrinkles and discoloration. Additionally, hyaluronic acid plumps up skin, konjac root from an Asian flower exfoliates and improves hydration and elasticity, and clary sage is a natural toner.
Brighten and tighten your skin with Now Solutions Vitamin C & Ferulic Acid Serum. Concentrated vitamin C and ferulic acid smooth skin texture, even skin tone, and offer antioxidant protection. Anti-inflammatory pomegranate seed extract also fends off free radicals and helps to unclog pores. Hyaluronic acid moisturizes and leaves a glow.
Multitask with Pacifica Mattify & Protect Daily Priming Lotion with SPF 35. Ferulic acid increases the antioxidant, free-radical-scavenging, and UV-adsorption properties of this multipurpose lotion. Vitamin C, zinc, and niacinamide brighten and support skin health. Natural minerals control oil and create a sheer canvas for makeup. SPF 35 provides broad-spectrum UVA, UVB, and blue-light protection.