Squalane vs. Hyaluronic Acid: Which Is Better?

BY Sonam Basantani / Oct 8 2019 / 14:44 PM

We have put together everything you ever wanted to know about these two super ingredients

Squalane vs. Hyaluronic Acid: Which Is Better?

If you looked up Hyaluronic Acid in Cliffs' Notes, it would probably translate to  'a tall glass of water for the face' as this super-hydrator is best known for its unique ability to hold up to a thousand times its weight in water molecules, making it the ultimate complexion champion.

Althought a key natural component of skin, Hyaluronic Acid tends to depletes as we age, visibly reducing the moisture levels in our skin. Fortunately, a plethora of synthetic versions of the essential acid are available in the form of injectables, serumsm creams, sheet masks and  make-up to restore dermal moisture levels.Synthetic Hyaluronic Acid is designed to mimic the quality of humectants when applied topically, drawing in water to soothe, plump and infuse skin with moisture for a dewy, youthful effect.The lightweight ingredient typically has a fresh, gel-like texture which is perfectly suited for sensitive and mature skin types as it improves skin elasticity, repairs skin and acts as a shield against free radicals and environmental toxins.


(From left to right: Sunday Riley Brightening Enzyme Water Cream Dhs255, Sephora / Dr. Barbara Sturm Hyaluronic Serum Dhs255, Net-a-porter.com / Maskologist Lavender Youth Miracle Dhs113, Maskologist.com / Hourglass Illusion Hyaluronic Skin Tint SPF15 Dhs299, Sephora)

Squalene, formally referred to as poly-unsaturated hydrocarbon liquid, naturally occurs within our skin’s own lipid barrier. Unlike Hyaluronic Acid, which increases skin’s water content, Squalene is a mega-hydrator that acts as a barrier to keep moisture locked in so skin is soft, supple and plump for longer.

With time, dermal Squalene levels also tend to decline but the antioxidant molecule can be harvested from plant-based sources like rice bran and olives for topical use. Squalene in its purest form can oxidise and clog pores, but Squalane, the super lightweight oil derived through hydrogenation has a longer shelf-life and is considered to be far more stable for cosmetic and skincare use.

The natural antioxidant emollient works well for all skin types, especially mature.  It fights against UV damage and skin pigmentation and is highly-efficient in brightening dull skin as well as reducing fine lines, scars and wrinkles for a more radiant and youthful complexion.


(From left to right: Origins Plantscription™ Youth – Renewing Facial Oil Dhs275, Sephora / SK-II Facial Treatment Oil Dhs555, Revolve.com / Indie Lee Squalane Facial Oil Dhs52, Net-a-porter.com / Zoeva Authentik Foundation Dhs130, Sephora)

As both have similar properties and benefits, it really depends on personal preference which one to opt for! Why not try layering the two for maximal impact? Be sure to use Hyaluronic Acid to hydrate first followed by Squalane to seal in moisture and maximise retention.