Niacinamide vs Hyaluronic Acid: Which One Is Perfect For Your Skin?

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Skincare is complicated, and each person’s routine is a little different. A great deal depends on your skin type and circumstances. Two of the more popular skincare trends in the last several years have been the use of Niacinamides and Hyaluronic Acid.

In this article, we’ll compare Niacinamide vs Hyaluronic Acid and see whether one, or both, is right for your skin. We’ll discuss what the two substances do, and who might want to use either (or both).

Let’s begin.


Niacinamide – A Skin Powerhouse

Niacinamide is an antioxidant form of Vitamin B3. What is Vitamin B3? Vitamin B3, also known as niacin or nicotinic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin found in many foods.

In the body, Vitamin B3 helps convert food into energy and produces hormones that help metabolize fats. It may also help reduce cholesterol levels and lower blood pressure.

What does niacinamide do for the skin?

Niacinamide has been used to treat acne and rosacea by reducing inflammation. It’s also said to fight wrinkles and hyperpigmentation by protecting your skin from sun damage and helping rebuild collagen.

However, research as to these purposes is still scant, and ongoing.

Hyaluronic Acid – Moisturizing Marvel

Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance found in various tissues and circulating fluids in the body. Hyaluronic acid (also known as hyaluronan) is a type of glycosaminoglycan (GAG), which are large, naturally occurring molecules found in the spaces between cells. The main function of hyaluronic acid is to lubricate tissues, providing shock absorption to joints and other areas where it’s located.

Hyaluronic acid also plays an important role in wound healing by providing nutrients and moisture to new cells as they form scar tissue.

The higher the concentration of HA within the skin, the greater its ability to retain moisture!

Both Are Good For Skin

When you think of skincare ingredients, niacinamide and hyaluronic acid may not be the first ones to come to mind. But they are increasingly gaining attention as skincare staples because they’re well-tolerated by all ages and skin types, including those with sensitive skin.

Studies have shown both improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while improving hydration levels.

Plus, they work with other key ingredients such as retinol and vitamin C by helping them penetrate deeper into the skin—making them even more effective at reversing signs of aging.

Niacinamide is an active form of vitamin B3 used as a skin-conditioning agent and helps to even out your skin tone by reducing hyperpigmentation.

According to Dr. Marnie Nussbaum, a board-certified dermatologist, niacinamide is a “wonder ingredient” that can help minimize enlarged pores, tighten loose pores, improve uneven skin tone and soften fine lines and wrinkles.

How To Apply Niacinamide

Although it’s available in many over-the-counter products like moisturizers and creams, there are also several ways you can use niacinamide at home to improve your complexion on your terms:

  • Apply it directly to areas of concern with fingers or cotton balls
  • Work it into the face using fingertips or fingertips (the latter approach may be more effective)

Why Do Pores Enlarge?

Enlarged pores can happen for genetics, excess sebum production, and age-related collagen loss. They’re more common on areas of the face that produce more oil or as we age.

The oil inside our pores hardens as it comes into contact with air, contributing to pore enlargement.

You’ll find that the reasons pores get larger are numerous, but they all have to do with oil production and air contact.

For example, if you have oily skin or produce excess sebum (oil), your pores will get larger over time because the oil inside them hardens as it comes into contact with air.

Here are some other causes:

  • Age-related collagen loss
  • Genetics

Niacinamide Vs Hyaluronic Acid

While hyaluronic acid boosts the quantity of water in human skin cells, niacinamide boosts ceramides, cholesterol, and oleic acid levels. This helps to improve your skin’s barrier and keep moisture in.

The moisturizing effects of hyaluronic acid are nearly instantaneous, whereas niacinamide takes at least four weeks to restore your barrier lipids.

Compared to hyaluronic acid, niacinamide has significantly more studies to back up its anti-aging properties. For example, numerous studies have shown that niacinamide can increase collagen formation and reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

Its antioxidant properties can also help prevent UV damage, the leading cause of premature skin aging.

The amount of hyaluronic acid in your outer skin decreases as you get older, reducing the flexibility of your skin and giving it a sagging appearance. On the other hand, hyaluronic acid treatments have been demonstrated to improve skin suppleness.

After eight weeks of application, one study found that hyaluronic acid decreased wrinkles and fine lines (as well as flexibility and moisture). However, this could be attributable solely to its moisturizing impact.

On the other hand, Niacinamide can help with a variety of premature aging skin symptoms. It, for example, stops melanin from being transferred from your melanin-producing cells (melanocytes) to your skin cells around that area, preventing uneven melanin distribution (hyperpigmentation/dark marks/etc.). It also helps enhance the texture, yellowish color, redness, and suppleness of the skin. 


If you’re debating between niacinamide and hyaluronic acid, it depends on your preference and what you would like to achieve with your beauty regimen.

If you want to hydrate quickly, hyaluronic acid is the substance to use. If you have other skin issues such as acne, aging, or discoloration, niacinamide is better.

If you want to hydrate quickly, hyaluronic acid is the substance to use. If you have other skin issues such as acne, aging, or discoloration, niacinamide is better.

Of course, you are not forced to select between the two options. Niacinamide and hyaluronic acid could be more effective when combined!

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Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).