8 Skincare Ingredients You Can Beautifully Pair With Ferulic Acid

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Figuring out the best ingredients for your skincare routine can be overwhelming, as there are plenty of options to choose from. While some are widely known and requested, there are skincare heroes that are lesser-known. 


One such ingredient which gets less credit than most is ferulic acid. While ferulic acid isn't as widely admired as treatments like AHAs or retinol, its antioxidant properties make it a great addition to any skincare routine. Dermatologist and founder of Avant Dermatology and Aesthetics, Sheila Farhang, MD, tells Marie Claire, "Ferulic acid is an antioxidant found in rice, corn, and wheat. Not only is ferulic acid an antioxidant but it is also known to brighten dark spots and overall skin dullness thanks to its ability to inhibit the enzyme [tyrosinase which causes melanogenesis—the production of melanin.]".

While ferulic acid is a potent ingredient by itself, it can be a powerful skincare product when used in combination with other skincare superstars. Knowing which ingredients to use together is essential for creating a well-rounded routine, because although certain combinations can cause further issues to your skin, the right match can get you the healthy and glowy skin you seek. When using ferulic acid, you want to use it with the right skincare ingredients to boost its antioxidant properties.


Ferulic acid and retinol

One of the best products to use ferulic acid with is retinol. Together, retinol and ferulic acid have the power to dig deep into your skin to help increase firmness and give your skin a youthful touch. 


According to Procoal London, the combination of retinol and ferulic acid is a mutually beneficial one. When mixed, retinol and ferulic acid can increase each other's efficacy. Besides increasing collagen production, ferulic acid can help retinol go deeper into your skin and improve your skin's texture and firmness. In addition, ferulic acid helps protect the retinol against free radicals, which can cause wrinkles and other skin issues. 

Skin Kraft adds that this combo of skincare ingredients will help add moisture and smooth the skin. When used together, retinol and ferulic acid can help your dermis appear brighter and younger. However, it should be noted that, when using these two ingredients, you want to avoid any product that includes vitamin C. Because retinol can destabilize vitamin C, you want to dodge any product that has ferulic acid with vitamin C (via Zensa Skincare).


Ferulic acid and vitamin E

Another popular skincare ingredient you want to mix your ferulic acid is with vitamin E. Like retinol, ferulic acid helps boost the benefits of vitamin E to intensify how well it works on the skin. Beautiful with Brains explains that when used as a pair, ferulic acid helps stabilize ingredients like vitamin E. This stabilization helps both the vitamin E and ferulic acid work at their fullest capacity to brighten the skin and smooth the skin tone. While they won't prevent sun damage, they can help repair damage from UV rays, making them a potent duo.


As Dr. Jonquille Chantrey tells Stylist Magazine, "Ferulic acid, in combination with other antioxidants, is excellent for sun-damaged skin and preventing the breakdown of collagen in all skin types." Dr. Chantrey explains that this blend is ideal for your skincare routine, as the ferulic acid will boost the strength and lengthen the lifespan of vitamin E. In addition to helping smoothen the skin and repair damage from environmental stressors, this helps to repair dark spots.

Vitamin C and ferulic acid

Perhaps the best skincare ingredient you can mix ferulic acid is with vitamin C. The pairing between these two skincare ingredients is so potent that they'll usually be found together. 

Like other antioxidants, ferulic acid helps boost the effects of vitamin C and extend its life. As esthetician and owner of Inderma Studio Nichelle Temple explains via Dermstore, "because it stabilizes antioxidants such as highly oxidative vitamin C, ferulic acid actually makes other skin care ingredients last longer and work harder to fight free radicals." When you apply ferulic acid along with vitamin C, your skin works to protect you against some environmental dangers like pollution and UV rays. 


However, as much as these ingredients are potent on their own, they are also unstable. ESK Care explains that one of the downsides of vitamin C as a skincare ingredient is the fact that it is fickle on its own. Vitamin C's instability means that it requires special circumstances to remain potent and doesn't have as long of a shelf life. Ferulic acid is used to extend that life while increasing its potency in repairing damage from UV rays. When used in combination, vitamin C and ferulic acid can double their sun protection efforts.

Niacinamide and ferulic acid

Everyone knows niacinamide as a stellar skincare ingredient on its own, because it can help acne-prone skin retain hydration while regenerating skin cells. While niacinamide and ferulic acid are ideal for your skin separately, together they can deliver even more benefits. 


By using niacinamide with ferulic acid, you can help brighten your skin and even out your texture, per Eminence Organics. Perhaps the biggest benefit of this combination is the improvement of hyperpigmentation of the skin. Since both ingredients include sun protection, you can expect them to help shield the skin against environmental triggers.

Although ferulic acid tends to not work well with ingredients like glycolic acid, there's no need to worry about its compatibility with niacinamide. Skinceuticals explains that these ingredients mainly target different aspects of the skin, meaning they don't interfere with each other. Niacinamide is known for being a universal skincare ingredient with little to no side effects, so when using this blend, you can expect to see brighter and more hydrated skin.


Hyaluronic acid and ferulic acid

Although these two skincare ingredients target different aspects of the dermis, they don't obstruct each other, and when used in combination they can greatly improve the skin. 

As Skin Deva points out, hyaluronic acid is a humectant that can help attract and retain moisture for the skin. By itself, hyaluronic acid can help the skin appear more hydrated and repair dry areas. On the other hand, ferulic acid can help minimize the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. So, when they're used in the same skincare routine, you can help improve two major skin issues at once.


Although they have separate tasks, these two skincare ingredients are often found in the same products to help deliver fresher and younger-looking skin. Dr. Brenner's Vitamin C Serum with Ferulic Acid, Vitamin E and Hyaluronic Acid is one product that houses the potency of both ferulic and hyaluronic acid. As a team, these ingredients can help clear your skin from acne scars and breakouts while also smoothing out your skin and improving its hydration. 

Ferulic acid and resveratrol

While also lesser-known, resveratrol is a powerful anti-aging skincare ingredient that can make a great pairing with ferulic acid. 

As an antioxidant, resveratrol can protect the skin and even the skin's texture. As board-certified dermatologist Michele Green, MD, explains to Byrdie, "Our skin is the largest organ in the body, and it functions as your body's first line of defense against harmful microorganisms. Using an antioxidant such as resveratrol helps boost your skin's natural barriers so that your skin looks and feels smoother and healthier." 


Not only does resveratrol work in helping your skin feel and look smoother, but when used with another potent ingredient like ferulic acid, it can help protect your skin against harmful aggressors. As Skincare.com mentions, resveratrol can help alleviate redness and fight off free radical damage on the skin. When mixed with ferulic acid, another antioxidant, this combo can help give your skin another layer of protection against environmental triggers like UVA and UVB rays. While they protect against the same type of aggressors, you can't have too much protection against the sun. 

This combination not only helps you look great, but will help your skin's health in the long-term. For that reason, you should ideally use this amalgam underneath your daily sunscreen for the ultimate protection.


Ferulic acid and green tea

Not only is green tea a refreshing drink, but it makes for a wonderful skincare ingredient too. Yet another skin-saving antioxidant, green tea can help infuse much-needed nutrients into your skin while protecting it against unwanted aggressors. 


Hale Cosmeceuticals adds that green tea can become unstable under certain conditions, meaning that knowing how to use it and pair it is key to receiving all of its benefits. When used with another antioxidant like ferulic acid, both ingredients help increase their potency and extend their shelf lives. In addition to protecting against free radicals, green tea is an anti-inflammatory and can help treat skin conditions like eczema and rosacea.

When considering two antioxidants like green tea and ferulic acid, it's important to remember that they work best as a team. Clara explains that when used together, you can get the best coverage against free radicals, which can not only harm your appearance, but damage your skin's health. While ferulic acid focuses on building a shield and repairing sun damage, green tea will add protection as well as act as an anti-inflammatory for any redness.


Ferulic acid and lactic acid

Whenever you add an exfoliator like lactic acid to your skincare routine, you want to ensure your skin is ready for it. Although ferulic acid is gentle for most skin, many exfoliators can be too aggressive for the most sensitive skin types. 


However, some of the most popular exfoliants are milder options like lactic acids. This skincare ingredient helps remove dead skin cells without being too rough on the skin. As Lovely Skin explains, lactic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid. But unlike other ingredients in this acid group, lactic acid is much softer on the epidermis. On its own, lactic acid can help with cell regeneration and removing dead skin cells. When used at a determined concentration and with other products, lactic acid can do much more.

Although ferulic acid doesn't get along with many other AHAs, pairing it with lactic acid can help improve your skin's health and appearance quickly. Kiehl's Ferulic Brew Antioxidant Facial Treatment with Lactic Acid is an example of how these skincare ingredients can make for a potent duo. By mixing these two, you can help quickly regenerate new skin cells while protecting them from free radical damage. This combination will help improve any appearance of aging caused by free radicals, and it can reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles.