Niacinamide vs Hyaluronic Acid: An In-Depth Comparison Between the Two

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Niacinamide vs Hyaluronic acid?

You’ve probably heard a lot about the comparison of niacinamide vs hyaluronic acid and how they can help hydrate skin, brighten dark spots, reduce wrinkles, and help fight acne.

Now you’re looking to increase your knowledge of the benefits of niacinamide and hyaluronic acid. The good news is that you’ve come to the right place.

This guide will tell you everything you need to know about the comparison of niacinamide vs hyaluronic acid, including their benefits, side effects, and more.

What Is Niacinamide?

Niacinamide, also known as nicotinamide or B3, is a form of vitamin B3. It is one of the essential vitamins that is part of the B complex family.

Touted for its anti-aging effects, niacinamide is used in skincare products like creams and serums to treat damage caused by aging, sun exposure, pollution, and other factors.

Niacinamide can also help reduce symptoms of acne by reducing pore size and sebum (skin oil) production. Since it has few side effects, niacinamide is a great alternative for acne sufferers wishing to avoid harsh topical medications.

What Are the Benefits of Using Niacinamide?


Studies have found that niacinamide can help to improve aging spots, fine lines and wrinkles, skin elasticity, and skin hydration.

This is because it increases the production of collagen, which keeps the skin firm and supple. Also, niacinamide plays an important role in cell repair and the prevention of oxidative stress.

Sun damage protection

Niacinamide helps protect the skin from harmful UV rays by balancing the production of melanin, which provides UV protection and suppresses skin darkening.

Applying a topical product containing niacinamide before going out in the sun can help keep your skin from burning.

Skin hydration

Another benefit of using niacinamide is its ability to maintain moisture levels in the skin by stimulating ceramide production. This results in increased smoothness and softness of your skin.

Treats acne

The sebaceous glands release excess oil onto the skin, which can clog pores and lead to acne. Niacinamide keeps sebum from overproducing, which can help reduce breakouts.

Studies have shown that niacinamide is as effective as benzoyl peroxide in treating mild-to-moderate acne. It also reduces redness and inflammation associated with outbreaks, and it may even prevent future breakouts.

Lightens dark spots

Dark spots are areas of discoloration on the skin caused by sun exposure and other environmental factors. Niacinamide can fade dark spots and restore a natural, younger-looking complexion.

Treats rosacea

Niacinamide can also work as an anti-inflammatory agent on rosacea sufferers or those with sensitive skin types, who often experience painful flare-ups due to inflammation in their skin tissue.

What Is Hyaluronic Acid?

Hyaluronic acid is a substance naturally produced by our bodies and is found in every tissue and organ. It is what gives your skin that ‘plump’ look.

As you age, your body produces less hyaluronic acid and this can result in the loss of volume in the skin. HA is a common ingredient in many beauty products due to its ability to hold onto 1000 times its weight in water and keep it there for long periods.

The ingredient is similar to a vacuum cleaner because it sucks up water from its surroundings, making it effective at plumping up the skin. Its effects are cumulative over time, meaning that repeated use will give you better results.

What Are the Benefits of Using Hyaluronic Acid?

Hydrates skin

The first benefit of hyaluronic acid serum is its ability to keep your skin hydrated. It helps in retaining moisture in your skin, which keeps it fresh and radiant all day long.

Your skin loses moisture as it grows older, but this ingredient prevents such loss by retaining moisture within the layers of your skin cells. This helps you achieve beautiful, soft, and supple-looking skin without any wrinkles or fine lines on it.

Increases cell turnover

Many people use hyaluronic acid as part of their anti-aging routine because this ingredient encourages cell turnover.

When cells turn over quickly, there’s less time for free radicals to damage the cells, which can lead to fine lines and wrinkles forming over time—especially around the eyes.

Reduces fine lines and wrinkles

Hyaluronic acid is an excellent anti-aging product because it removes fine lines, wrinkles, and puffiness under your eyes. The hydrating properties of this acid helps to soften facial features, giving you a smoother, younger-looking appearance.

Safe for all skin types

Hyaluronic acid works well on all skin types, including sensitive skin, making it a great choice for skincare products.

And because of its unique molecular structure, hyaluronic acid retains moisture within the skin for extended periods of time. This allows other beneficial ingredients to be effective longer within the skin.

Similarities Between Niacinamide and Hyaluronic Acid

  • Niacinamide and hyaluronic acid are used to treat a wide range of skin conditions, including acne, wrinkles, rosacea, and sun damage.
  • Both are able to hold large amounts of water molecules in their chemical structure, giving your skin its elasticity.
  • They are both non-irritating ingredients that are safe for most people to use regularly as part of an anti-aging regimen.
  • Both of these substances work to reduce wrinkles, but niacinamide does so by increasing collagen production, while hyaluronic acid does so by attracting water to the skin.

Differences Between Niacinamide and Hyaluronic Acid

When comparing niacinamide vs hyaluronic acid, a major difference that sets the two apart is that niacinamide is a vitamin B3 derivative, while HA is a naturally occurring substance in the human body that keeps skin firm and well-hydrated by retaining water.

Hyaluronic acid works on the surface of the skin, specifically the upper layer called the epidermis. It works by drawing water from the atmosphere into the upper layer of the skin, keeping it plump and hydrated.

Unlike hyaluronic acid, niacinamide penetrates deeper into the skin layers to stimulate collagen production. This means it can help eliminate wrinkles and other signs of aging on your skin better than hyaluronic acid.

Additionally, niacinamide and hyaluronic acid have different molecular weights. Hyaluronic acid is a large molecule with a molecular weight of around 3600g/mol while niacinamide has a smaller molecular weight of around 122g/mol.

This means that niacinamide penetrates the skin much faster than hyaluronic acid. As a result, niacinamide is more effective for treating aging skin, acne, and other skin conditions, while hyaluronic acid works best for hydrating the skin.

Can You Use Niacinamide With Hyaluronic Acid?

Absolutely. These two ingredients work together to deliver amazing results in the fight against aging. Niacinamide is a powerful antioxidant that prevents aging while hyaluronic acid delivers long-lasting hydration.

Niacinamide has multiple benefits, but one of its primary advantages is that it is an antioxidant for the skin. It helps to protect the skin from harmful free radicals that can damage skin cells.

When used in conjunction with hyaluronic acid, it has a synergistic effect on your skin. Since both ingredients retain moisture, they can also help plump up the skin, thereby reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

How to Use Niacinamide With Hyaluronic Acid

Incorporating niacinamide and hyaluronic into your skincare routine is easy: just add them in with the rest of your skincare products.

You can buy a product that contains both ingredients, layer them as separate products, or even use each ingredient at different times of the day.

Add these ingredients to your regular routine as you would any other product. But, remember to use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher during the day; you don’t want the sun’s UV rays decreasing the efficiency of these ingredients.

Benefits of Using Niacinamide With Hyaluronic Acid

  • Increased hydration
  • Reduced hyperpigmentation
  • Decreased pore size
  • Reduced oiliness
  • Brighter complexion
  • Fewer fine lines and wrinkles
  • Reduced redness and irritation
  • Increased collagen production
  • Increased absorption of other ingredients into the skin
  • Reduced appearance of acne, rosacea, and other skin conditions

Side Effects of Niacinamide

In some cases, niacinamide can cause side effects, including itching and flaking. These side effects are typically minor and temporary, but they could become more severe in some people.

Additionally, niacinamide may not be safe for people taking prescription drugs like warfarin, clopidogrel, or phenytoin. As with all products that you put on your skin, you should always check with your doctor if you experience any negative reactions after using this ingredient.

Side Effects of Hyaluronic Acid

The most common side effects of hyaluronic acid are redness, burning, and itching from topical application, although these side effects are usually temporary.

When it comes to using HA topically, there are certain conditions that may make you more susceptible to side effects.

For example, if you’re using depigmenting products containing hydroquinone, you may experience a slight stinging sensation when using hyaluronic acid. This is a temporary effect caused by the interaction between HA and hydroquinone.

Other reported side effects include dryness and flakiness, which tend to be minor effects that go away on their own after continued use.


How does hyaluronic acid work?

Hyaluronic acid works by binding itself to water molecules. It then holds onto water molecules throughout the day, giving your skin a fuller appearance.

The hyaluronic acid also seals in moisture beneath your skin, which helps prevent further moisture loss. This results in a smooth appearance and improves the overall health of your skin.

Can you use niacinamide and hyaluronic acid to treat acne?

Yes, you can. Both niacinamide and hyaluronic acid are ingredients that can help your skin look its best. When combined, the two can be a powerful combination for treating acne.

Niacinamide works by reducing oil production and strengthening the skin barrier, while hyaluronic acid provides your skin with the moisture it needs to heal itself.

Is hyaluronic acid a good moisturizer?

Yes, it is. Hyaluronic acid is a popular ingredient in many moisturizers and facial serums because of its ability to hold 1000x its weight in water.

Because of its ability to hold moisture, this substance is incredibly effective at rehydrating dry skin cells and restoring elasticity.


Both niacinamide and hyaluronic acid are popular ingredients in skincare products. However, there are some differences between the two ingredients that can make one more suitable for you than the other.

I hope you found the above comparison of niacinamide vs hyaluronic acid helpful.

Thanks for reading.

Visit Serum101 if you want to find out more information about these two ingredients.