It's a funny old thing, plumpness. Back in our school days plump cheeks were not exactly a covetable feature, but, as the wisest of women once sang, you don't know what you've got till it's gone. Only when that juiciness sank away did we all realise that plumped up skin is just what we want. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.
You've probably read about all the factors that cause the hollowing of cheeks and thinning of skin over the years - collagen and elastin production slowing down, loss of natural hydration - and it's true that in the right hands, injectible fillers can be a great solution. The most popular, Juvederm, are made with Hyaluronic acid (HA), a naturally occurring sugar that holds onto 1000 times its own weight in water, so grabs moisture in your skin and supports it subtly back to its best. If you'd rather not go down that route, you've got options. There's plenty of skincare out there that can help, mostly containing (you guessed it) hyaluronic acid, so I've rounded up my top five HA infused super-products just for you! Read on to discover the creams, masks and serums that can effectively plump up the volume in your skin every day.
Intraceuticals Rejuvenate System
Not so much one product as a collection of products, and not cheap at that but I promise this LA favourite (check the A-list superfans on the Intraceuticals site) is the absolute business. The hero is the Rejuvenate Daily Serum, with HA at a low molecular weight so it gets where it needs to be, plus brightening Vitamin C and resurfacing Vitamin A. Layer up with the quenching Hydration Gel then seal it all in with Moisture Binding Cream (more HA plus seed oils) The result is a layer cake of juicy hydration that makes skin feel comfortable, bouncy but not overloaded. The travel kit has all three plus a little Rose Revival Mist, I used the trio every single day through a not-so relaxed party season and my combination skin loved it so much I haven't been tempted to switch to anything else since, which is saying something.
DHC Quick Film Smoother
As well as the sinking of perky cheeks, volume loss also makes lines more obvious with the eye and nose-to-mouth areas particularly affected. This little cream from clever Japanese solution-finders DHC is smooth and light, but does serious work on deep lines. Tap it onto the offending area to instantly fill it out with eggshell membrane peptides plus hydrate with HA and soy protein. Pleasingly, this sits nicely under makeup without feeling heavy or pilling into those annoying little balls like so many primers do.
Omorovicza Instant Plumping Mask
If it's serious plumping you seek, there's no substitute for a great mask, especially one like this from luxe Hungarian skin specialists, Omorovicza, that you needn't even wash off (you'll want your skin to hang onto these actives) Ingredients include HA, held in tiny spheres to juice up sad skin, peptides to rev up your natural collagen production and Omega 6 Ceramides, which replenish the structure that keeps healthy lipids perkily in place. As you'd expect at this price it looks, smells and feels beautiful and a little goes a long way. A thin layer once a week before bed is all you need for happy, glowy cheeks.
Indeed labs Hydraluron Moisture-Boosting Mask
It might be a sign of the times, it might have been that third glass of picpoul de pinet, either way we've all felt a bit withered of a morning - enter sheet masks! There are loads of these around but Hydraluron are to my mind still the best for pure hydration and glow. They are drenched in Indeed Labs' classic HA gel, which the sheet delivery pushes right down into your skin along with algae until every last drop is absorbed and everything perks up. Simple, effective, and quite fun too - everybody likes an excuse to lie down for 15 minutes, don't they?
Rodial Dragon's Blood Hyaluronic Night Cream
Don't be put off by the name; Dragon's Blood is a plant extract known for its anti-inflammatory powers and a healthy concentration of protective antioxidants. As well as its namesake natural ingredient, this thick unctuous cream packs in plenty of HA at low weights to hydrate and plump plus retinol technology, the gold standard of pigmentation fighting. Due to that super-rich texture and retinol content you will need a separate daytime moisturiser (not always the case with 'night' creams) but dry skin will happily drink it in overnight and rise looking plumped and full of moisture.