Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating General Which Alcohol Ingredients Are Considered Drying to the Skin?

  • Which Alcohol Ingredients Are Considered Drying to the Skin?

    Posted by spadirect on June 14, 2020 at 1:35 am

    Which alcohol ingredients (alcohol preservatives, fatty alcohols, etc.) are considered drying to the skin?  Which alcohol ingredients are not considered drying to the skin?

    Please note by “drying” I mean either clinically-demonstrated to be drying or consumers generally perceive the type of alcohol ingredient to be drying or not to be drying to the skin?

    Any comments or discussion about alcohol ingredients and the reality or perception that some or all may be drying to the skin would be greatly appreciated?  Thanks!

    Pharma replied 4 years ago 3 Members · 4 Replies
  • 4 Replies
  • Pharma

    June 14, 2020 at 8:23 am
    Use search bar, it’s an old topic.
    Clinically (proven), non are drying. Due to wrong handling, ethanol and propanol isomers are considered drying by consumers.
    Fatty alcohols have about as much in common with the alcohols you’re referring to than other ‘alcohols’ in a chemical sense such as sugars or glycerol.
  • spadirect

    June 15, 2020 at 7:58 pm

    I am aware of the fundamental differences chemically.  I am also aware that ethanol and propanol isomers when used in excess on the skin are indeed drying.

    I realize now is that what I was really trying to ask was what are generally recognized and commonly held consumer perceptions about ingredient nomenclature in which the modifier ‘alcohol’ appears?

    In other words, my question was not about chemistry or dermatology but rather about consumer market perceptions these days (whether they be factually correct or not).  Unfortunately, the reality is that health and scientific misinformation and ignorance can be powerful forces in the marketplace (whether we like it or not).

    I will refer to recently published market research reports and beauty consumer surveys.  Thanks!

  • OldPerry

    June 15, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    @Spadirect - yes, this is more of a consumer question.

    I would suggest that even Ethanol and Isopropanol generally used are not drying to skin. Some disagree but I’ve not seen evidence that changes my mind.

  • Pharma

    June 16, 2020 at 4:59 pm

    I had a customer once who didn’t want to buy a product because it contained alcohol: phenoxyethanol. She wasn’t offended by the presence of a preservative but ugh, ethanol is killing her skin. Can’t argue with that…

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