Skincare Ingredients to Avoid

Monday, 21 March 2016

The ingredients lists on beauty products can be a real minefield, buried in a thick layer of opaque mud most of the time. But, there's hope! With a few dictionary terms, anyone can decipher those paragraphs of complicated chemical compounds. In particular, here are the ingredients that you should take note of and avoid.
Now, everyone loves a good smelling product. It's probably the first thing on the pro-list of any product review. But the thing is, fragrance can be incredibly irritating to the skin, hence why it's often excluded from products for sensitive skin. If you're prone to redness or irritation, it's best to avoid products that included fragrance. You'll find it listed in the ingredients as fragrance, parfum, or perfume. And it also doesn't matter whether the fragrance is synthetic or natural!

Essential Oils
For many years skincare companies were proclaiming the benefits of essential oils, saying they added natural fragrance and hydration. One of the most popular essential oils is lavender which can also be drying and irritating to the skin. Thankfully, essential oils are typically listed in plain English as whatever they're extracted from whether it's lavender, citrus, or anything else.

Silicones are excellent buffer ingredients used to fill out a serum or cream product but they're also great for making a product (and your skin) feel smooth and slippery. The problem is that silicones act very much like cling-wrap and clog your pores and they're also very difficult to remove with regular cleansers. These ingredients are very common and are often hidden behind many names ending in cone, con, xan, or xane.

Mineral Oils
Back in the day petroleum jelly was treated like a wonder product that could do anything. Nowadays we know better. Petroleum jelly is a great product for creating a barrier and protecting the skin from external irritants. However, it also protects the skin from things like serums, oils, and moisturisers and prevents them from penetrating and nourishing your skin. While petroleum jelly may make your skin feel a bit better, in the long-term, it doesn't help your skin. It's also a bit tricky to recognise on the ingredients list as it can be written as petroleum jelly, petroleum oil, mineral oil, paraffin oil, or paraffinum liquidum.

So, there's a little road map to help you navigate the ingredients lists in the future and pick out the ingredients to avoid. What other ingredients can you think of to avoid?

xx Julia

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