What Does Ferulic Acid Do? Benefits That Sets It Apart

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To be able to lean on a product or ingredient for the best result means having confidence in the results you will get when you use such an ingredient-rich product. Ferulic acid falls under such reliable ingredients. If you are wondering, ‘what does ferulic acid do,’ the answer is simple- protect.

This antioxidant-rich ingredient is a backup used in skincare products to help protect and soothe the skin against the environmental aggressor, free radicals.

You might have overlooked this component in your skincare, but it’s time to start paying attention. The acid is slowly gaining attention in the skincare market for its effective results, especially when paired with highly concentrated active ingredients.

You can read on to get the answer to the question ‘what does ferulic acid do to the skin,’ and why you need it in your skincare routine.

What is ferulic acid?

Derived from the walls of some plants and fruits, ferulic acid is a naturally occurring acid in plants with antioxidant properties used to protect the skin against free radicals.

It’s common in apples, peanuts, oranges, and oats. It is a preventive ingredient you will find mostly in serums and topical treatment creams. As a result, you will find it paired with other ingredients to boost skincare.

According to a study, the acid can also help to protect against oxidative stress caused by UV rays. Its antioxidant properties provide a shield for skin cells and skin structures. In addition, it prevents the breaking down of the cell cycle by creating new skin cells.

Therefore, it can be induced that ferulic acid is one of the most effective antioxidant properties used in protecting the skin against aging signs like wrinkles and fine lines.

What does ferulic acid do?

Whether taken as a supplement or applied topically, ferulic acid has enough benefits for the skin. The following are what you gain from using the acid.

1. Prevents free radicals

Ferulic acid is one of the best ingredients in supplying antioxidant properties to the skin. These properties reduce the free radicals penetrating the skin. The acid serves as a shield to prevent oxidative stress, which causes free radicals that latch onto the skin cells.

2. Helps to reduce wrinkles and fine lines

The acid also helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. This makes the acid a great anti-aging component used in anti-aging products. Furthermore, it stimulates the firming of the skin, keeping your skin texture tightened.

3. Protects against UV rays

The acid is usually paired with other ingredients due to its high tolerance against UV rays, which other active ingredients do not have. As a result, it reduces the effect of UV rays on the skin.

You’ll need this if you are active during the day. Protecting your skin from sun damage means you have a lesser chance of getting sunburn, oxidized skin, hyperpigmentation, and skin cancer.

4. Acts as a booster

A study found that using ferulic acid with vitamins C and E boosts the potency of the ingredients.

The photoprotection of the acid increases to twice its potency when paired with these vitamins. Consequently, you can say the acid is a stabilizer and booster for ingredients.

5. Soothes skin irritation

Ferulic acid also soothes the skin against any type of irritation. Its antioxidant properties help to calm the irritation caused by environmental and chemical reactions.

6. Plumps the Skin

The acid also helps to plump the skin. It fills the lines and creaks, creating a smooth texture that appears luminous. You can use its product to keep your skin youthful-looking.

7. Helps to even the skin tone

Although not permanent, ferulic acid helps to reduce redness on the skin and even out your skin tone. It does this by minimizing the appearance of dark spots on the skin, thereby improving your natural skin glow.

Cons of ferulic acid

While it is an excellent antioxidant, a major flaw with this ferulic component is that it cannot be used on its own. It has to be paired with another active ingredient to enhance its efficacy. That is, ferulic acid works best when paired than alone.

Additionally, the acid can cause allergic reactions because it is derived from plants and fruits. If you are allergic to a particular plant or fruit this acid is derived, you will most likely experience allergic reactions on the skin.

Moreover, it is best to avoid the ingredient if you have sensitive skin or skin issues like eczema. The acid could flare up the issues.

How to use ferulic acid

Ferulic acid comes mostly in serums, and it’s best to use it in your morning routine. However, it is safe to use it twice a day.

To use the acid in your skincare routine, follow the following steps:

  • Gently cleanse your skin with a mild cleanser.
  • Apply your toner to remove debris and oil left on the skin.
  • Apply your ferulic acid serum. 3-4 drops from the applicator are enough.
  • In a circular motion, massage the acid into your skin. Starting from the neck to forehead or forehead to neck.
  • Apply your moisturizer to protect the skin.
  • Layer with your sunscreen for full protection.

Note: When using this antioxidant-rich acid, avoid using exfoliating acids because they can change the balance of the skin, which affects the potency of the acid in the skin.

What can you pair with ferulic acid?

You can pair ferulic acid with several ingredients. The following work best with the acid.

Ferulic acid and vitamin C and E

You can mix this acid and vitamins C and E. This is the best combo with the acid. When mixed or paired together, the effectiveness of antioxidant properties rises to double, keeping the skin protected.

Furthermore, the skin is protected against harmful UV rays that cause free radicals and oxidative stress in the skin. Also, the acid stabilizes the vitamins.

Ferulic acid and resveratrol

Resveratrol is a naturally occurring component derived from some plants too. It is also rich in antioxidant properties. Therefore, you can use the mix to fight aging signs and free radicals in the skin. The acid boosts the effectiveness of its partner. It also stabilizes the component.

Ferulic acid and retinol

The acid helps to stabilize retinol. Consequently, it provides soothing properties to highly concentrated amounts of retinol. This, in turn, boosts the efficacy of retinol in the skin. In addition, oxidative stress is reduced. This helps to improve skin brightening.

Ferulic acid and niacinamide

When combined, these two keep the skin smoother and tighter. While the vitamin B5 derivative helps to keep the skin firmer, the acid protects the surface and inner layer of the skin. Also, the combo helps to brighten the skin, improving your overall skin tone.

Can you use ferulic acid alone for skin lightening?

No, it can’t.

While you can use ferulic acid to reduce the appearance of dark spots and uneven skin tone, you cannot use it to permanently lighten your skin.

The acid is known to provide anti-inflammatory properties that help to reduce oxidative stress on the skin. But it does not brighten your skin as vitamin C or arbutin will.

To increase the effectiveness of the acid, you can pair it with vitamin C to get the best reaction for your skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

what does ferulic acid do

Can you use ferulic acid with salicylic acid?

No, you can’t.

Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA), which is used to exfoliate the skin and remove dead skin cells. Doing this will change the pH level of the skin. This can affect the effectiveness of the acid. As a result, they are not compatible.

Will ferulic acid dry your skin?

No, it will not.

The acid contains properties that would maintain the suppleness of your skin. Consequently, it will not dry your skin.

Is it safe to use ferulic acid every day?

Yes, it is.

You can use ferulic acid in your skincare routine every day. The acid has little to no reactions on the skin. However, you can experience side effects if you are allergic to the acid.


After drawing a picture of this great support ingredient, ferulic acid, a clear idea of what it does to the skin and why you need it in your regimen should be evident now.

Ferulic acid is an antioxidant that helps to reduce free radicals in the skin by protecting the skin barrier and soothing the skin. This also helps to reduce wrinkles and fine lines in the skin. Therefore, you will find this component in most anti-aging products, like a serum.

However, the acid does not stop free radicals, it can only prevent and block, not treat the ones in the skin. Knowing what it can and can’t do helps determine the best way to mix and use the component.

Once you’ve paired the acid with other effective ingredients, you’ll get an enhanced skincare routine. So try out a ferulic acid-rich product today to boost your skincare routine.

Thanks for reading.

You can find more helpful beauty tips here on MBGON.