The Importance of PH in Your Skin Care


Do you really know what the pH of the skin is and why you have to take special care with it? We will tell you about it in this article.

The first thing you need to know is what we call skin pH, or hydrogen potential. It is a chemical parameter whose measurement tells us how acidic or basic a certain solution is. The neutrality value is 7, below are the acid values ​​(the lower the more acidic) and the basic values ​​are above (the higher the more basic).

Our skin, or rather the protective acid mantle that covers it and that is formed by the union of the aerial mantle (layer of water vapor and carbon dioxide that is released from the metabolism of cells) and the epicutaneous emulsion (or hydrolipidic film ), it has a certain pH. Specifically, it is an acidic pH that varies under normal conditions between 4.5 and 5.9.

The hydrolipidic film is formed by the mixture of the secretions of the sweat glands (sweat) and sebaceous (fatty acids, squalene and ceramides) with the products from the keratinization of the cells of the stratum corneum.

The substances that give the acid pH to our skin are mainly lactic and urocanic acids, which are eliminated by sweat, and the fatty acids provided by the sebaceous gland.

What pH Levels are Harmful to Skin

The pH scale is a numerical scale, between 0 and 14. Zero indicates a very low and extremely acidic pH, while 14 is the highest or most alkaline pH. The average pH of the skin is between 4.5 and 5.9. This means skin is slightly acidic, all thanks to its "acid mantle," the protective barrier on the surface of the stratum corneum (the top layer of skin) that helps keep moisture in and environmental aggressors out. Maintaining an acidic environment creates more resilient skin to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria and neutralize alkaline aggressors.

best ph level for skin

What are the signs that your skin's pH is out of balance? When your skin starts to get too red, too dry, itchy, too flaky, too oily, or something similar, it is because there is no balance in the skin and the pH has changed. When a pH is too alkaline it causes dryness and dehydration in the skin, causing eczema breakouts and potentially highlighting signs of aging (such as fine lines and wrinkles), and if your pH is more acidic than normal , your skin will become red and inflamed more easily.

Why is The Acidic pH of The Skin Important?

Variations in the pH of your skin can cause pathologies. For example, a more basic pH than normal can cause itchy skin, so it is important that we know the pH we have to take care of our skin. With an inappropriate pH, we lose water and dehydration occurs.

The increase in pH also produces an inadequate functioning of the enzymes necessary for the defense function of the skin to be carried out correctly.

On our skin, in the acid mantle there is an important colonization of microorganisms that form the natural microbiota of the skin. These microorganisms begin to appear already at the moment of birth and remain - with certain variations - in balance as long as the pH of the skin is at the usual acid values, hovering around pH 5.5.

But if there is an increase in the pH value, that is, if the skin is alkalinized for a time, the defense function will not work properly and the growth of other types of microorganisms will occur that are, or can be, harmful and could cause any pathology or the appearance of infections.

Factors That Can Alter The pH of Your Skin

There are different factors that can lead to an alteration in the normal pH values ​​of your skin:

👉 Cleaning:

How and with what you do the daily hygiene of your skin is very important in maintaining an adequate pH in the skin.

Too intense or frequent hygiene, even with a suitable product, will cause dryness and irritation

Most soap, gels, shampoos and other cleaning products are alkaline, causing a change in the pH of the skin. This change in pH can take from one to two hours to neutralize in healthy skin, to a few hours in certain cases. During the time it takes your body to readjust the pH, the skin will not be adequately protected.

When we talk about neutral pH in hygiene and skincare products, we are not referring to a pH around 5.5, which is the average value for healthy skin. These products will be "neutral" with the skin and will not cause changes in its pH.

👉 Unsuitable Cosmetic Products:

In addition to hygiene products, any other cosmetic that we put on the skin without an adequate pH can cause an imbalance and with it a dysbiosis (alteration of the microbiota) and an alteration of the barrier function of the skin.

That is why it is advisable to use products that are respectful of the pH of healthy skin. Additionally, products that contain alcohol can also disrupt the acid mantle.

👉 Age:

The skin of babies and children up to puberty has a higher pH. With old age, the tendency to alkalinity reappears, while in intermediate ages the pH is more acidic.

These naturally occurring differences mean that both children and the elderly have more delicate skin and that it is even more important to properly choose the cleaning and care products they use.

Changes in Temperature and Humidity:

Temperature and humidity, by altering the amount of water present in the hydrolipidic film, can also produce variations in pH.

In addition, a dehydrated skin is a more sensitive skin and less protected against the action of external agents.

💢 Some Medications:

Medications such as antibiotics, diuretics and chemotherapy, among others, can alter the pH, eliminating its function as a protective barrier.

💢 Hormonal Changes:

During adolescence, pregnancy and menopause, changes in hormonal levels can also lead to changes in the pH of the skin, especially in some areas such as the genitals.


You know, clean and take care of your skin with perfect products that do not alter its optimal pH and you will be able to keep your skin beautiful and healthy.

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