Some acids are fake. Hear me out. Ferulic acid is not really an acid. It is nothing like your average skincare acid and in fact ferulic acid that functions as a chemical exfoliant. It is more like vitamin C on steroids.
If you’ve been around the skincare sphere for a while, you may have heard about ferulic acid. It is an ingredient with a cult following and we were determined to find out why so that you don’t have to do the digging. You’re welcome.
Here’s what we learned. Ferulic Acid is an antioxidant that helps prevent that skin from aging or getting damaged. Like all antioxidants, it is a protective, preventative ingredient. Is it a fabulous ingredient? Yes.
Do you need to run out the door and buy it as soon as you finish reading this article?
As always, the posts in this series are to help educate you about different skincare ingredients so that you can make an educated decision on whether or not it’s right for you. Repeat after me, you do not need a million skincare products. Targeted products can be effective, but first, we have to learn what they are. Here’s what you should know about ferulic acid.
How to pronounce Ferulic Acid?
Let’s start with the essentials, how to pronounce ferulic acid. While it looks confusing, it’s actually quite simple. Ferulic acid is pronounced “Fuh-roo-lik” acid. Easy enough.
What is Ferulic Acid?
Ferulic acid has another name a much more menacing sounding one, hydroxycinnamic acid. It is a powerful antioxidant. It is naturally available in plants, most commonly associated with apples. It can also be created in a lab like many other skincare ingredients.
Generally, skincare acids, that actually acidic are used as chemical exfoliants because they are able to break down dead skin cells and sebum.
But ferulic acid has a neutral pH and does not function this way.
What does Ferulic Acid do?
Ferulic reduces the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. The antioxidant properties of the ingredient reduce the damage caused by external factors like free radicals.
Okay, free radicals are kinda the enemy, if you want to learn more about them read this post. They effectively damage your skin by trying to grab electrons from your skin.
This effectively is an anti-aging benefit that many of us are looking for in our skincare.
Using ferulic acid regularly to protect yourself will reduce any damage to the skin. Unlike retinol that improves the appearance of wrinkles and acne, ferulic acid gets ahead of the game and prevents the problem.
What is that we always hear about prevention being better than a cure well that’s exactly it! Prevention is the better option.
Who should use Ferulic Acid?
Ferulic acid is a prevention method. It is great for those trying to protect their skin from further damage in most situations.
For those that are outdoors often, ferulic acid would be a great addition to their routine as it protects the skin from environmental stressors.
Or even if you live in a big city you are constantly exposed to damaging pollutants and using an antioxidant can really change your skincare game.
Mid-twenties is about the right age to start thinking of anti-aging products.
Different types of Ferulic Acid
Every other antioxidant’s best buddy is ferulic acid. It is like that one girl that got along with every clique and social group in school.
The different types of ferulic acid basically are sourced from different types of plants like rice, wheat, oats, and even pineapple.
You can also find ferulic acid in basically any kind of skin care product available. From serums to eye creams to moisturizers and sometimes even in peel pads.
Honestly, you can take your pick, some of these products even combine ferulic acid and an antioxidant to simplify your routine and yet provide maximum benefits.
Favorite Ferulic Acid Products
Ferulic acid is not exactly the easiest ingredient to find as a pure product. It is even rarer in the drugstore setting. So, here are a couple of products that I enjoy that you can check out if you are interested that include ferulic acid.
The Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Wrinkle Recovery Overnight Serum offers the divine trifecta of ferulic acid, retinol, and niacinamide for wrinkle prevention, reduction, and overall anti-aging.
The Ordinary Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3% is a great starting point if you are curious about the ingredient and what it has to offer.
The Skinceuticals CE Ferulic is definitely one to mention because of its popularity but more on this in just a second.
Is SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic worth it?
So, I have some thoughts. Many people swear by the product. I am fully aware of its cult following but I’d like to tell you that it did not work for me. It broke me out and the situation never got better.
Given that it costs a fortune I wanted you to know that it is not necessarily going to work for you, but we all know products affect people differently and this was simply my experience. Many people, in fact, hundreds of people swear by this serum. Do what you want with that information.
Who should not use Ferulic Acid?
Ferulic Acid is a universal ingredient it works for almost all skin types. The only major concern is allergies. If you have an allergy to the source of ferulic acid-like bran then you should avoid it.
On the other hand, it is even possible to develop an allergy to this ingredient. So, keep your eyes peeled for any redness, rash, or peeling.
If you have sensitive skin we strongly suggest that you do a patch test first before applying the product all over your face. Always do the patch test in a hidden spot like behind your ear is great. Clean the area and apply the product and wait 48 hours. I know that’s a long time but just wait and if all is well you are good to go. But if you don’t like the way it feels, do not proceed.
How to add Ferulic Acid to your routine?
Ferulic acid plays well with almost all ingredients besides exfoliating acids. These are your glycolic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid, and so on.
The pH level of these acids renders the antioxidant less than effective. You will be only wasting products if you layer them one after another as a part of the same routine.
Otherwise, ferulic acid fits right into your morning routine with some vitamin C or E or both along with a good SPF.
Mixing Ferulic Acid with other products
Pairing your ferulic acid with vitamin E or vitamin C can work wonders for your skin. Especially to protect it from pollutants and free radicals.
But as we always stress here, do not mix ingredients. Always layer your products one at a time.
FAQ about Ferulic Acid
Many skincare ingredients like ferulic acid and hyaluronic acid are called acids even though they are not acidic in the strictest sense. So, naturally, we do have a few more questions we’d like to have answered.
Is ferulic acid good for pigmentation?
Ferulic acid will not work to reduce hyperpigmentation but it will help reduce the condition from worsening. Since it can be a potential pigment inhibitor using it regularly can help your uneven patches even out over time if used in conjunction with other ingredients.
Is ferulic acid good for dry skin?
Ferulic acid is a universal ingredient that works well on all skin types. Since it is not a stripping or drying agent people with dry skin should be able to use it like anyone else.
Does ferulic acid cause any side effects?
So far there has not been any evidence to show side effects from long-term use of ferulic acid. However, if you show signs of redness, rash or hive stop using immediately and contact a medical professional if necessary.
Can ferulic acid cause allergies?
It is possible that you might be allergic to the source of the ferulic acid in your product which can cause a bad reaction so always be aware of where acid is coming from. If you have a wheat allergy for instance opt for ferulic from apples. There are numerous options out there.
Final Thoughts on Ferulic Acid
Ferulic acid works in tandem with other antioxidants. Going out every day is like waging war on your skin so why not choose the best armor possible. That’s how we like to think of ferulic acid – as armor for your skin. Just to drive the analogy home, think of vitamin E as the helmet and vitamin C as the shield and you are ready for war.