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Cosmetic Ingredients

Understanding the Ingredients in Cosmetics.

When buying another jar of cream, a lipstick, or a shampoo, we sometimes

examine the ingredients of the given cosmetic. But at seeing the incomprehensible

and horrible terms, we are seized with panic! Are these ingredients indeed

of use? As weird as it sounds, they usually are. We’ll try to explain

all these complicated terms and how they affect our skin.

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Abietic Acid – a

product of nature extracted from the gum-resin of needle-leaved trees.

Its alcohols, abietol and dihydroabietol, are applied in cosmetics in

soap and lacquer production. It’s slightly toxic.

TEA Alkyl Sarcosinates

- anion active PAV. These are transparent yellow liquids containing 40%

of the basic substance. Supple PAV does not irritate your skin and mucous

membranes. They are applied in shampoos, bath foam, and as ingredients

of intimate cosmetics.


substance extracted from castor oil, it is applied during packaging. It

helps to preserve preparations considerably longer.

Benzoic resin – a

fawn resin of tropical plants with vanilla smell. It preserves cosmetics

containing fats and oils from rancidity. The resin infusion produces an

antiphlogistic and anticeboric effect. It is used in production of cosmetics

for problematic skin.

Borax (sodium tetra borate)

– white transparent crystals soluble in water and glycerin. It softens

roughened cells and whitens your skin.

Boric acid – white

powder solute which produces an antiphlogistic and disinfectant effect.

It can be found in lotions and toilet water.

White clay (kaolin) –

powder imbibing secretion of sebaceous glands. It is included into the

ingredients of medical powders, masking creams, drying-up masks.

Bleached wax – whitened

bee wax which is used as cream and lipstick basis.

Vaseline – a product

of worked-out rock oil. It’s not absorbed by the skin and considered

to be an ideal basis for massage creams.

A-hydroxide acids

active biocomponents which are contained in some cosmetic products (gels

and lotions for face refining, moistened creams, etc.), they delay aging

of the skin and ameliorate complexion. They gently dissolve the tissue

substance among horn cells and thus revive skin (so-called peeling effect).

Glycerin – is used

for softening dry skin. It saves creams from parching up. When used long-term,

the solute can cause darkening of the skin.

Isopropilmiristat - synthetic

oil which softens skin and suppresses the drying effect of alcohol. It`s

applied in antiperspirants.

Castor oil – substance

of natural vegetation (is procured from Palma-Christi seeds). It’s

applied in many cosmetic preparations (like creams, issues for looking

after the body). It’s an active biocomponent which helps the skin

to form a protecting barrier against parching up. It contains about 90%

of retinoic acid which creates a softening film on the skin surface. It

affects your hair as a conditioner. It’s one of the ingredients

of creams, lipsticks, and oils and balms for body.

Cocomide – an excellent

emulator and purifier.

Sodium lauretsulphate

clearing component of weak effect. It’s applied as a cream ingredient.

Citric acid – the

basic acid of citruses. It’s used in cosmetics for whitening the

skin. It’s added to the ingredients of lotions because it contracts

pores, produces a tonic effect, and helps to heal cracked skin. It’s

beneficial for hair also -- that’s why it is often included into

the composition of shampoos and balsams.

Lipids – substances

of a large group of sebacic-like organic combinations not soluble in water;

lipids contain fats, sterols and waxes. In cosmetic production they are

applied in nutritive, regenerating, and moisturizing creams for improving

barrier skin functions.

Myristyl Myristate

composite ether of miristin acid. Wax-like mass. It can`t be dissolved

in water. It’s widely used in various cosmetic products (creams,

lotions, shampoos, shaving stuff) as an oily and softening component.

It doesn’t produce an irritating or allergic effect and helps normalization

of fats exchange, as well as heightens the penetrating ability of the


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Methyl Paraben

methyl ether of mord-oxibenzoic acid. It’s a white, crystalic powder

with a specific smell. It’s a preserver and an antiseptic; is active

against gram-positive bacteria and less active against musting and gram-negative

bacteria. Unlike other ethers of poreoxibenzoic acid, it’s better

dissolved in water but is characterized by less antibacterial effectiveness.

As a rule, it’s mixed with other preservers (phenoxiethanol, imidazolidinurea).


Sodium bicarbonate (drinking

soda) – tender fat removing substance softening horny stratifications.

It saves sebaceous glands from plugging up and takes off the greasy shine

of the skin. It produces a gentle whitening effect, thus it is applied

in the production of toothpaste and cosmetics for the ameliorating of

skin pigmentation.

Petrolatum – a component

which has packaging uses. It’s used for extracting vaseline and

other materials. It’s added to the ingredients of sebacic creams.


ethers r-hydroxibenzoate, which are often used among cosmetic ingredients

as preservers and substances for killing bacteria and fungus.

Resorcinol – a crystalic

substance which becomes pink in the open air and which removes dead cells

to revive your skin.

Salol – sun blocking,

anti-microbic material possessing a delicate, pleasant fragrance.

Scvalen – an extract

of olive oil well-known in cosmetic production. It provides for skin protection,

elasticity and tanning.

Tannin – substance

found in tea, in the bark of oak trees, in nettle, in sage and in some

other plants. Contracts pores, diminishes cutaneous grease, and blocks

pellicle formation.


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