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Linoleic acid may be less popular than its AHA and BHA peers, but don’t sleep on it just yet! Linoleic acid is not a true acid, but an essential fatty acid found in oil, which means it doesn’t age in exfoliation the way true acids do. Instead, it delivers nourishing benefits to the skin. 

Linoleic acid is the most common Omega 6, but the body can’t create on its own. Therefore, we absorb it through foods like fish, nuts, oils, and seeds. Our skin relies on these essential fatty acids to function since they are the building blocks of healthy cells. Here are the benefits of linoleic acid for the skin.

It Protects Skin Against Infection and Retains Moisture

Linoleic acid helps prevent water loss and strengthen the skin.

The outermost layer of the skin is composed of skin cells that are stacked like bricks. What holds them together? Sebum, ceramides, and fatty acids. These fatty acids act as an antibacterial barrier that helps protect the skin against infection. It’s also water-resistant, which helps prevent transepidermal water loss. Studies on essential fatty acids conducted by the Royal Postgraduate Medical School in London found that applying oils that are high in linoleic acids, such as sunflower and avocado oil, can help repair the skin barrier.

It Fights Acne and Inflammation

If you have acne-prone skin, consider introducing this essential fatty acid to your regimen. A study published in the Educational Journal of the British Association of Dermatologists found that linoleic acid has comedolytic properties. It can help inhibit the formation of comedones like pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads when applied topically on the skin. It can also help heal existing acne and other types of inflammation, such as dermatitis and rosacea through regular application. The study found a 25% reduction in comedones size over a one-month treatment period.

It Helps Protect Against UV Rays

Linoleic acid can provide photoprotection and prevent hyperpigmentation caused by UV exposure. 

While it’s not a substitute for sunscreen, linoleic acid can also help protect the skin against UV damage. Exposure to UV rays can induce inflammation in the skin and weaken its immune response. An article in the Oregon State University Micronutrient Information Center explains that linoleic acid provides photoprotection by converting into compounds that fight inflammation and boost the skin’s response to aggressors. Moreover, it protects the skin from UV-induced hyperpigmentation, helping improve uneven skin tone.

It Promotes Cell Turnover and Smooth Skin

If you’re looking for a youthful glow, linoleic acid can help. As an unsaturated fat, linoleic is critical in promoting cellular turnover and keeping the skin soft and smooth. Apart from strengthening the skin barrier, it also provides moisture and plumpness. Through its moisturizing properties, it promotes glowing skin by preventing dryness. This function also helps improve skin texture, calm irritations, and minimize signs of aging.

Combat premature undereye aging with POND’S Age Miracle Eye Cream. It reduces fine lines and increases moisture levels to revitalize tired-looking eyes. The formula also delivers a soft-focus effect for instantly soft-looking skin.

Give your skin a nourishing boost with POND’S Vitamin Duo Nourishing Sheet Mask. This avocado- and Vitamin E-infused sheet mask contains oleic and linoleic acid to deeply nourish the skin and keep it from drying.

When adding linoleic acid to your skincare routine, start slow and apply it once a day to see how your skin reacts. As mentioned above, you may see results in a month of use, in conjunction with a regular skincare routine and a healthy lifestyle.