Is hypochlorous acid safe for my skin?

Is hypochlorous acid safe for my skin?

Many hypochlorous acid companies are bottling hypochlorous and marketing it as a luxury skincare treatment. But does hypochlorous actually live up to the skincare hype? The truth is yes, in more ways than one! Hypochlorous is effective for cosmetic purposes, such as keeping your skin clear from blemishes, and it also has powerful healing properties. Hypochlorous can be used to treat burns, infections, scars, rashes, bug bites, and more.

Of course, we aren't just going to make these claims without the scientific research to back it up! Why does hypochlorous work so well on skin? Numerous studies have shown that hypochlorous is a strong antimicrobial and oxidizer, which allows it to quickly break down harmful bacteria. This is particularly effective during wound healing, when infectious bacteria begins to accumulate at the wound site (often referred to in the literature as biofilm). Biofilm slows down the healing process and can contribute to scarring and further infections. Hypochlorous has been proven to breakdown biofilm within as little as 2 minutes at very low concentrations (<10 ppm).

Hypochlorous also works as a strong anti-inflammatory. When skin is wounded, white blood cells (referred to as mast cells) colonize the wound site as part of the body's immune system response. This often results in inflammation, which hypochlorous can reduce by stabilizing the mast cell response without inhibiting the healing process. Inflammation also often brings with it pruritus, or itchiness. Hypochlorous is effective in reducing itchiness by eradicating the microorganisms that cause itching and controlling histamine levels.

The formation of scars is also directly linked to post-operative wound management, specifically inflammation reduction. Thus, hypochlorous can be used to reduce scarring by managing inflammation levels and preventing excessive collagen formation.

The research around hypochlorous and acne treatment is fairly new and unsubstantial. While several studies have shown that hypochlorous is relatively effective against facial acne, the sample sizes in the studies are small and the statistical difference between hypochlorous and control samples is minor. However, as discussed above, many of the conditions that accompany or even precede acne, such as inflammation, scarring, or biofilm build-up can all be effectively controlled by hypochlorous acid. So it might be more accurate to say that hypochlorous can be effective in reducing the side effects of acne (eg; redness, scarring, itching), but has not been proven to clinically treat the root condition.

If you're ready to try hypochlorous acid for yourself, but don't want to add yet another expensive bottled product to your skincare routine, we suggest purchasing a machine so you can make your own! We sell a small, one-liter machine that's perfect for the kitchen or bathroom counter. And the nice thing about hypochlorous is it doesn't just have to be used for skincare--it also doubles as a food sanitizer, all-purpose cleaning product, laundry detergent, wound healer, and more!



Gold, M. H., Andriessen, A., Bhatia, A. C., Bitter, P., Chilukuri, S., Cohen, J. L., & Robb, C. W. (2020). Topical stabilized hypochlorous acid: The future gold standard for wound care and scar management in dermatologic and plastic surgery procedures. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 19(2), 270–277.

Tirado-Sánchez, A., & Ponce-Olivera, R. M. (2009). Efficacy and tolerance of superoxidized solution in the treatment of mild to moderate inflammatory acne. A double-blinded, placebo- controlled, parallel-group, randomized, clinical trial. Journal of Dermatological Treatment, 20(5), 289–292.

Photo by Mathilde Langevin on Unsplash

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