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Linolenic Acid

Linolenic Acid

Also-called-like-this: alpha-Linolenic acid, ALA, omega-3 fatty acid, Form of Vitamin F


The famous omega-3 fatty acid, the mother of all ω-3 fatty acids in our body. Next to linoleic acid, it is the other essential fatty acid that our body cannot synthesize and we have to ingest it from our food. It is also a PUFA, aka polyunsaturated fatty acid with three double bonds, a kinky chemical structure and thus a liquid consistency.

While linoleic acid is abundant in the skin, this is not the case with alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). It is not entirely clear if it is meant to be like that or if this is a consequence of not eating enough Omega-3 with the typical Western diet.

Leafy green vegetables, walnuts, flax seeds and fish oils are rich sources of ALA and if you are not eating a lot from these, supplementing with fish oil is a pretty good idea backed by research. It is a good idea both in terms of general health benefits as well as potentially improving inflammation-related skin issues such as atopic dermatitis or acne.

As for using ALA topically, we have to say that its role and effects seem to be less direct than with LA. ALA's main role in the skin appears to be modulating the immune response of the epidermis. This is probably helpful for inflammatory skin diseases but most studies examine ALA as an oral supplement and not when applied topically. One exception, we could find, is a study that found that topically applied ALA has nice spot-fading abilities.

To be honest, it seems to us that oral supplementation of ALA is more important than smearing it all over your face. However, that is not to say that topical ALA is a bad thing, it is a good thing. It is a skin-identical ingredient, it is probably moisturizing and anti-inflammatory but its topical effects are less established than that of fellow omega fatty acid, linoleic acid

Show me some proof

  • McCusker, Meagen M., and Jane M. Grant-Kels. "Healing fats of the skin: the structural and immunologic roles of the ω-6 and ω-3 fatty acids." Clinics in Dermatology 28.4 (2010): 440-451.
  • Ando, Hideya, et al. "Linoleic acid and α-linolenic acid lightens ultraviolet-induced hyperpigmentation of the skin." Archives of dermatological research 290.7 (1998): 375-381.

Products with Linolenic Acid

Pipette Baby Oil Formulyst Dark Spot Solutions Medix 5.5 Booster Serum 20% Vitamin F Doctor Babor Lifting Rx Comfort Vitamin C Serum NB Nurfella Beauty Skin Renewing Serum Suu Balm Cooling Itch Relief Facial Moisturizer Nanowhite Intensive Brightening Serum Nuface Collagen Booster Cremadex Gentle Foaming Facial Cleanser Medihealth Nutrem POM POM Botanikuskert Problémamegoldó Krém Pilgrim Brightening Serum Re'equil Pea Protein And Ceramide Hair Mask African Botanics Ceramide Repair Booster Ceramedx Gentle Foaming Facial Cleanser Chemist Confessions The Better Oil JORI Skincare Daily Leave-on Acne Treatment Mask Mesoestetic Glycolic + E + F Ampoules Paula's Choice Omega Complex Serum Paula's Choice Omega+ Complex Serum Petal fresh pure Superfoods Damage Control Shampoo Pipette Baby Oil (2021) Twems Beauty Book Of Lip Potion dr. denese Hydroshield Ultra Moisturizing Face Serum Кря-Кря Шампоан За Коса С Витамин F Ciel Skin Brightening Glow Serum Cocunat Extraordinary Body Oil Dermoskin Babycare Baby Oil MIMPIMIKA Serum With Hyaluronic Acid MIMPIMIKA Super Boost Serum Proactive+ Skin Smoothing Exfoliator Refresh Skin science Alpha Arbutin Serum Typology Lipid-replenishing Shower Oil 2.5% Vitamin E + F + Bitter Almond Extract Vasanti Brighten Up! Glow Boosting Serum Vitality Aloe Vera Gel strøm spa Moisturizing Cream Aramore Nad+ Cell Energizing Lotion Boost Lab Jojoba+ Bio-nourishing Face Oil Doctor Babor Power Serum Ampoules Vitamin C Serum HALEA Anti-Aging Serum Mediheal Sleeping Melting Nose Pack Mesoestetic Anti Aging Flash Ampoules PLUM 1% Oat& Allantion Deep Nourish Facewash Paula's Choice Resist Anti-Aging Replenishing Toner Veracity Selfcare Bioevolve Serum Zelens Power D in her element Rose Gel Serum Moisturizer in her element Rose Gel Serum Moisturizer Arcocere After Wax Hyaluronic Acid Australian bodycare Body Oil