What Are Ceramides?

You can marinade your skin in acids and vitamin serums, but if you want to achieve the healthiest skin of your life, what you really need is moisture. And when it comes to moisturising ingredients, there’s nothing much better than ceramides. Just as drinking water keeps our bodies in optimal condition, ceramides replenish your skin’s moisture levels and strengthen your skin barrier, keeping it healthy and fresh. Here’s everything you need to know about ceramides. 

What are ceramides?

Ceramides are lipids (fats) that are naturally produced by our bodies – and typically found in the top layers of our skin. They actually make up 50% of skin’s composition, so they’re pretty important in establishing how skin looks, feels, and behaves. As we age, our bodies stop producing as many ceramides and the ones we have are reduced in effectiveness by sun damage. This weakens the skin’s barrier, resulting in the signs of ‘aging skin’ – loose, dry, rough skin, wrinkles, redness, and dehydration. 

How do they work?

If you think of your skin as a brick wall, ceramides are the cement between the bricks that hold your cells together. They basically strengthen skin by reinforcing its layers, helping to prevent moisture from escaping, while stopping harmful pollutants and environmental aggressors from getting in and causing damage.  

Why should I use them?

Because ceramides increase hydration levels, when skin has an optimal level of ceramides it feels plump, soft, firm, and bouncy. Therefore, it’s an ideal ingredient for all skintypes to use but is especially beneficial if your skin is easily dehydrated or feels dry. 

Ceramides also help to strengthen and reinforce your skin’s barrier, which prevents aggressors, pollutants, and bacteria from getting in and causing damage. If you experience acne, breakouts, pigmentation, or want to better protect your skin from free radical damage, ceramides are a vital ingredient.  

What are ceramides?

You can use ceramides day and night, and you’ll find them in everything from serums to cleansers, but they’re most beneficial in serums and moisturisers and when they’re in high concentrations. Look out for products or ranges that are specifically dedicated to ceramides like Holika Holika’s Good Cera collection or Skin79’s Ceranol range. Ceramides are most effective when combined with other hydrating ingredients like fatty acids, hyaluronic acid, and glycerin, and also work well with antioxidants like vitamin C and other skin restoring ingredients like retinol, EGF, and niacinamide. 

Ideal for those who want to use acids but experience sensitivity, this moisturiser is the ultimate antidote to rough, dry skin since AHAs and ceramides are the perfect partners. The acid improves the effectiveness of the ceramides by removing dead skin cells and clearing the pores, allowing the ceramides to absorb properly. 

Ampoules are basically supercharged serums with ingredibly high concentrations of ingredients, so if you need results fast or are experiencing a dry skin crisis, you can expect this to come through. Multiple forms of ceramides and glycerin are combined to provide long-lasting strengthening and hydrating benefits and a plumped up, glowy effect.

A moisturising toner sounds too good to be true, right? Leave it to K-beauty fave Holika Holika to formulate a products that soothes and refreshes your skin, all whilst treating it to an intensive dose of hydration. Dry, irritated skin doesn’t stand a chance against this gentle, fast-absorbing fluid solution.