NourishMax Sleep Sound Biphasic Body Serum Ingredients Explained

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Published on December 10, 2022.

Overview

What it is

Body serum with 50 ingredients that contains Vitamin E

Cool Features

It is vegan, cruelty-free, and reef safe

Suited For

It has ingredients that are good for anti aging, dry skin, brightening skin, sensitive skin and scar healing

Free From

It doesn't contain any harsh alcohols, parabens or sulfates

Fun facts

NourishMax is from United States.

We independently verify ingredients and our claims are backed by peer-reviewed research. Does this product need an update? Let us know.

You should know

Here's our breakdown of the notable ingredients, benefits, and concerns we determined from the ingredients in this product. Click any item to learn more.

Notable Ingredients

Vitamin E

Benefits

Hydrating (3)
Redness Reducing (2)
Reduces Irritation (3)
Anti-Aging
Scar Healing
Brightening (2)

Concerns

May Worsen Oily Skin (2)
Acne Trigger (3)
Irritating
Rosacea
Eczema

Ingredient Info

Click any item below to learn more and view relevant ingredients.
alcohol-free
silicon-free
fragrance-free
sulfate-free
paraben-free
oil-free
fungal-acne safe
reef-safe
eu-allergen-free
vegan
cruelty-free

Ingredients Overview

Here's our quick-to-read summary of the ingredients in this product. Keep scrolling if you'd like to learn more about what each ingredient does!
Ingredient
Features
1
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
2
Skin Conditioning
3 / 0
Oil IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
3
Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
0 / 0
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
4
Masking, Skin Conditioning
5
Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
6
Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
7
Solvent
8
Masking, Perfuming, Skin Conditioning
4 / 0
Fragrance IconOil IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
9
Skin Conditioning
10
Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
11
Emollient
3 / 2
Oil IconHelps reduce irritation IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
12
Masking, Perfuming, Skin Conditioning
Fragrance IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation Icon
13
Masking, Skin Conditioning
Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation Icon
14
Antioxidant
Antioxidant Icon
15
Emollient, Skin Conditioning
16
Skin Conditioning
17
Skin Conditioning
18
Antioxidant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
0-3 / 0-3
Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps hydrate Dry Skin IconMay cause irritation IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin Icon
19
Emollient, Masking, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Oil IconHelps hydrate Dry Skin IconMay worsen Oily Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
20
Antimicrobial, Masking, Skin Conditioning
21
Humectant
22
Emulsifying
0 / 1
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
23
Emulsifying
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
24
Emulsifying
3 / 0
Bad for Acne Prone Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
25
Emollient, Emulsifying
1 / 0
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
26
Emollient, Masking, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
27
Emulsifying
28
Absorbent
0 / 0
29
30
Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning
31
Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
32
Emollient, Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
2 / 1
Fatty Alcohol IconMay worsen Oily Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
33
Emulsion Stabilising, Masking
0 / 0
34
Emulsifying
Oil IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
35
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
1 / 0
36
Emollient, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting
1 / 0
Silicon Icon
37
Masking, Perfuming
Fragrance IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
38
39
Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
40
Emollient, Emulsifying
41
Masking
42
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
43
Buffering, Masking
AHA IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconMay worsen Rosacea IconHelps brighten skin Icon
44
Buffering, Masking
45
Preservative
Preservative Icon
46
Masking, Preservative
Preservative Icon
47
Perfuming, Solvent
Fragrance Icon
48
Perfuming
Fragrance IconMay cause irritation IconEU Allergen Icon
49
Perfuming, UV Absorber
Fragrance IconEU Allergen Icon
50
Perfuming
Fragrance IconEU Allergen Icon

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 50 ingredients. Click on any ingredient to learn more about it
1
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Loved

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

So why is it so popular? Water most often acts as a solvent - this means that it helps dissolve other ingredients into the formulation.

You'll also recognize water as that liquid we all need to stay alive. Talk about multi-purpose! If you see this, drink a glass of water. Stay hydrated!

Learn more about Water
2
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis Oil comes from the sweet almond, a tree native to Iran. This oil has no fragrance and is non-volatile.

Almonds contain healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. It is a rich source of Vitamin E, a great antioxidant and skin conditioning ingredient. Sweet almond oil contains fatty acids such as linolenic acid and triglycerides.

The content of sweet almond oil makes it a great emollient; it can help soften and hydrate your skin. Emollients create a barrier over your skin to trap moisture in. Sweet almond oil has antioxidant properties. This may help with anti-aging, as antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are unstable molecules that may damage your skin's cells.

Those with an almond allergy should be careful of this ingredient and speak with a professional about using it in your skincare.

This ingredient may not be fungal-acne safe.

Learn more about Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis Oil
3
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
Community Rating: Loved

Glycerin is already naturally found in your skin. It helps moisturize and protect your skin.

A study from 2016 found glycerin to be more effective as a humectant than AHAs and hyaluronic acid.

As a humectant, it helps the skin stay hydrated by pulling moisture to your skin. The low molecular weight of glycerin allows it to pull moisture into the deeper layers of your skin.

Hydrated skin improves your skin barrier; Your skin barrier helps protect against irritants and bacteria.

Glycerin has also been found to have antimicrobial and antiviral properties. Due to these properties, glycerin is often used in wound and burn treatments.

In cosmetics, glycerin is usually derived from plants such as soybean or palm. However, it can also be sourced from animals, such as tallow or animal fat.

This ingredient is organic, colorless, odorless, and non-toxic.

Glycerin is the name for this ingredient in American English. British English uses Glycerol/Glycerine.

Learn more about Glycerin
4
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride is an emollient, solvent, and texture enhancer. It is considered a skin-softener by helping the skin prevent moisture loss.

Within a product, Caprylic Triglyceride can thicken the product and make spreadability easier by dissolving clumping compounds. An added benefit of Caprylic Triglyceride is its antioxidant properties.

Caprylic Triglyceride is made by combining glycerin with coconut oil, forming a clear liquid. Caprylic Triglyceride has not been found to be toxic for human use in concentrations under 50%.

While there is an assumption Caprylic Triglyceride can clog pores due to it being derived from coconut oil, there is no research supporting this.

Learn more about Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride
5
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Polyglyceryl-10 Oleate isn't fungal acne safe.

6
What it does: Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Coco-Caprylate/Caprate is created from fatty coconut alcohol, caprylic acid, and capric acid.

It is a lightweight emollient. Emollients create a thin barrier on the skin to trap moisture in. This helps keep your skin hydrated and soft.

Once applied, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate is absorbed quickly and leaves a silky feel.

Coco-Caprylate/Caprate may not be fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Coco-Caprylate/Caprate
7
What it does: Solvent
Community Rating: Liked

Propanediol helps absorb ingredients into your skin, boosting their benefits. It can act as an emollient, making your skin softer. Propanediol can help products last longer by boosting the properties of preservatives within the formulation.

Propanediol is not likely to cause sensitivity and considered safe to use.

It is derived from corn or petroleum with a clear color and no scent.

Learn more about Propanediol
8
What it does: Masking, Perfuming, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Cocos Nucifera Oil is obtained from the kernels of the coconut fruit. In other words, this is coconut oil.

Coconut Oil is rich in fatty acids with lauric acid making up the majority of these. It also contains linoleic acid. Due to this high fatty acid content, coconut oil helps trap moisture and soften skin.

Despite being antibacterial, coconut oil may not be great for acne-prone skin. It is comedogenic and may clog pores. This ingredient may not be safe for malassezia or fungal acne.

Coconut Oil should not replace your sunscreen for UV protection. Studies show it only blocks about 20% of UV.

This oil is non-volatile and has a light scent.

The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term. For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance.

Learn more about Cocos Nucifera Oil
9
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Lavandula Angustifolia Flower Water is created by distilling parts of the lavender plant.

This lavender is known as the English Lavender and famous for creating purple fields in Provence, France.

Lavandula Angustifolia has anti-inflammatory properties due to its prostanoids and histamine content. Lavender also contains flavonoids and phenolic acids (such as ferulic acid), potent antioxidants.

Lavender flower water may have a scent. It may contain linalool, a known allergen.

Learn more about Lavandula Angustifolia Flower Water
10
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Mangifera Indica Seed Butter isn't fungal acne safe.

11
What it does: Emollient
Community Rating: Mixed

Oenothera Biennis Oil is the fixed oil derived from the seeds of the Evening Primrose.

Evening primrose oil is rich in fatty acids. These fatty acids include linoleic (60-85%), oleic (5-12%), palmitic (4-10%), and stearic (2-4%).

The fatty acid composition makes it a great ingredient for soothing and moisturizing skin. However, it may not be Malassezia folliculitis, or fungal acne safe.

Further research is needed on the role of evening primrose in treating eczema.

Evening primrose is native to North America.

Learn more about Oenothera Biennis Oil
12
What it does: Masking, Perfuming, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract comes from the common Marigold plant. Marigolds contain flavonoids.
Flavonoids are a group of substances found naturally in plants. They possess antioxidant and inflammation properties.

Antioxidants help fight free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules are capable of damaging our cells and other genetic material. Antioxidants help stabilize free-radicals by donating extra electrons. This may help reduce the signs of aging.

Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract may help soothe your skin by reducing inflammation. Emerging studies show it inhibits NO production safely, therefore reducing inflammation.

Marigolds have been used in traditional medicine throughout Asia and Europe.

Learn more about Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract
13
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Chamomilla Recutita Flower Extract comes from the Chamomile flower.

Chamomile is rich in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. Several compounds found in chamomile help with soothing, such as bisbolol.

Antioxidant components in chamomile make it an effective ingredient to help slow the signs of aging. Antioxidants help fight free-radical molecules, or molecules that may damage your skin.

Essential oils from chamomile have been found to improve wound healing due to its antimicrobial properties.

Ancient Greeks and Egyptians used Chamomile to treat skin redness and dryness. Chamomile has also been used to help treat stomach issues.

Learn more about Chamomilla Recutita Flower Extract
14
What it does: Antioxidant
Community Rating: Loved

Melatonin is an antioxidant.

15
What it does: Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Cocos Nucifera Fruit Extract comes from the meat of the coconut fruit. It is an emollient and skin conditioner with antioxidant properties.

Coconut fruit is naturally rich in amino acids, sugars, and nutrients including Vitamin C and small amounts of vitamin B. Malic acid can also be found in coconut fruit extract.

16
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Gardenia Taitensis Flower.

17
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Lespedeza Capitata Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract.

18
What it does: Antioxidant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Tocopherol (also known as Vitamin E) is a common antioxidant used to help protect the skin from free-radicals and strengthen the skin barrier. It's also fat soluble - this means our skin is great at absorbing it.

Vitamin E also helps keep your natural skin lipids healthy. Your lipid skin barrier naturally consists of lipids, ceramides, and fatty acids. Vitamin E offers extra protection for your skin’s lipid barrier, keeping your skin healthy and nourished.

Another benefit is a bit of UV protection. Vitamin E helps reduce the damage caused by UVB rays. (It should not replace your sunscreen). Combining it with Vitamin C can decrease sunburned cells and hyperpigmentation after UV exposure.

You might have noticed Vitamin E + C often paired together. This is because it is great at stabilizing Vitamin C. Using the two together helps increase the effectiveness of both ingredients.

There are often claims that Vitamin E can reduce/prevent scarring, but these claims haven't been confirmed by scientific research.

Learn more about Tocopherol
19
What it does: Emollient, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil is the oil derived from the seeds of a Sunflower. Sunflower seed oil is non-fragrant. It is an emollient, meaning it helps to soften the skin.

Sunflower seed oil contains many fatty acids. The fatty acids found in sunflower seeds include (from highest amount to least): linoleic acid, myristic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid, arachidic acid, oleic acid, and linolenic acid.

These fatty acids help the skin create ceramides. Ceramides play a role in repairing the skin barrier.

Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil helps moisturize the skin. This in turn helps the skin look more rejuvenated and smoother.

Sunflowers are rich in vitamin E.

Historians believe Indigenous cultures of North America domesticated sunflowers before corn. Thus they relied on sunflower oil for a variety of uses. One such use is moisturizing skin and hair.

Sunflower seed oil may not be fungal acne safe. We recommend speaking with a professional if you have any concerns.

Learn more about Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil
20
What it does: Antimicrobial, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Extract comes from rosemary. Rosemary is native to the Mediterranean.

While Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Oil can be volatile due to its fragrant properties, this component is usually removed in the leaf extract.

Rosemary Leaf Extract can help protect your skin against damage from free-radical molecules. It contains many antioxidants such as rosmarinic acid and caffeic acid. Rosemarinic acid has been found to help soothe skin conditions such as eczema and acne.

Learn more about Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Extract
21
What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Liked

Saccharide Isomerate comes from sugars found in corn. It is altered so the structure is more similar to the carbohydrates found in our skin. Its ability to match these carbohydrates makes it a great moisturizer and humectant.

Humectants help draw moisture from the air to our skin. Studies show Saccharide Isomerate to be an effective moisturizer.

22
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Sorbitan Stearate comes from sorbitol and stearic acid. Sorbitol is a type of sugar and stearic acid is a fatty acid.

It is used as an emulsifier and helps ingredients stay together by creating water-in-oil emulsions.

This ingredient may not be Malassezia folliculitis, or fungal-acne safe.

23
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Disliked

Sorbitan Palmitate is an emulsifier.

It is created by reacting sorbitol with palmitic acid.

24
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Sorbitan Oleate is created from compounds in oleic acid and sorbitol. It is used to stabilize a product by preventing ingredients from separating.

Emulsifiers help keep ingredients together, such as oils and water.

Sorbitan Oleate may not be fungal acne safe. It can also worsen oily skin.

Learn more about Sorbitan Oleate
25
What it does: Emollient, Emulsifying
Community Rating: Disliked

Glyceryl Stearate is a mix of glycerin and stearic acid.

Glyceryl Stearate is used to stabilize the mixing of water and oil ingredients. By preventing these ingredients from separating, it can help elongate shelf life. It can also help thicken the product's texture.

As an emollient, it helps soften skin and supports barrier-replenishing ingredients.

In cosmetics, Glyceryl Stearate is often made from vegetable oils or synthetically produced. The human body also creates Glyceryl Stearate naturally.

Learn more about Glyceryl Stearate
26
What it does: Emollient, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Cetyl Palmitate is a wax-like substance.

It comes from palmitic acid and palmityl alcohol. Cetyl Palmitate may not be safe for Malassezia folliculitis, or fungal-acne.

This ingredient is naturally found in the guava fruit and stony corals.

Learn more about Cetyl Palmitate
27
What it does: Emulsifying

We don't have a description for Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate.

28
What it does: Absorbent
Community Rating: Disliked

Magnesium Aluminum Silicate is a type of silica. It comes from naturally occuring minerals such as silicate ores and clay.

Magnesium aluminum silicate is used for enhancing texture and as an absorbent. Due to its large molecular size, it is unable to be absorbed into the skin.

Like other types of silica, this ingredient can be used to thicken a product. As an absorbent, it may be used to absorb extra water or help prevent clumping.

Learn more about Magnesium Aluminum Silicate
29
What it does:
Community Rating: Mixed

We don't have a description for Magnesium Chloride.

30
What it does: Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Xanthan gum is used as a stabilizer and thickener within cosmetic products. It helps give products a sticky, thick feeling - preventing them from being too runny.

On the technical side of things, xanthan gum is a polysaccharide - a combination consisting of multiple sugar molecules bonded together.

Xanthan gum is a pretty common and great ingredient. It is a natural, non-toxic, non-irritating ingredient that is also commonly used in food products.

Learn more about Xanthan Gum
31
What it does: Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
Community Rating: Disliked

Candelilla/Jojoba/Rice Bran Polyglyceryl-3 Esters isn't fungal acne safe.

32
What it does: Emollient, Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Cetearyl alcohol is a mixture of two fatty alcohols: cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol. It is mainly used as an emulsifier. Emulsifiers help prevent the separation of oils and products. Due to its composition, it can also be used to thicken a product or help create foam.

Cetearyl alcohol is an emollient. Emollients help soothe and hydrate the skin by trapping moisture.

Studies show Cetearyl alcohol is non-toxic and non-irritating. The FDA allows products labeled "alcohol-free" to have fatty alcohols.

This ingredient is usually derived from plant oils such as palm, vegetable, or coconut oils. There is debate on whether this ingredient will cause acne.

Due to the fatty acid base, this ingredient may not be Malassezia folliculitis safe.

Learn more about Cetearyl Alcohol
33
What it does: Emulsion Stabilising, Masking

Cellulose Gum is a water-soluble polymer that comes from cellulose. It is used to change the texture of a product and to help stabilize emulsions.

As an emulsifier, cellulose gum specifically thicken the texture of water-based products.

This ingredient is considered hypoallergenic and non-toxic. Cellulose Gum can be found in cosmetics, food, and other household goods such as paper products.

Learn more about Cellulose Gum
34
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil comes from hydrogenated castor oil. It is a solubilizer and emulsifier.

As a solubilizer, it helps dissolve ingredients into a water-based version. It is also an emulsifer. Emulsifier help prevent oils and water from separating. Both these properties help create evenly-spread and uniform products.

Basically, Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil helps hold ingredients together.

Learn more about Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil
35
What it does: Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

  • It is a solvent, meaning that it helps to dissolve other ingredients. This also enhances the absorption of the product into one's skin.
  • It is a humectant, which means that it helps attract moisture into the skin.
  • It helps improve product application.

Overall, Butylene Glycol is a safe and well-rounded ingredient. It is unlikely to irritate skin, and works well with pretty much all other ingredients.

36
What it does: Emollient, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Dimethicone is a silicone used for making products smooth and silky. It also has the added benefit of sealing in hydration. The amount of dimethicone found in beauty products is considered safe and non-comedogenic, meaning it won't clog pores.

Dimethicone has been found increase absorption in skin, boosting the benefits of other ingredients. While there is concern for the safety of dimethicone, the levels used in skincare are safe for use.

37
What it does: Masking, Perfuming
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Parfum is a catch-all term for an ingredient or more that is used to give aroma to products. Parfum, or fragrance, can be a blend of hundreds of chemicals or plant oils. This means every product with "fragrance" or "Parfum" in the ingredients list is a different mixture.

In the US, the alternative name for parfum is 'fragrance'. The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term.

For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance. One example is Calendula flower extract. Essential oil ingredients still impart a scent or 'fragrance'.

Depending on the blend, it can cause allergies and sensitivities on the skin. Some ingredients that are known EU allergens include linalool and citronellol.

Products use parfum often to give products a scent or cover up smells of different ingredients.

The bottom line is: not all fragrances/parfum/ingredients are created equally. If you are worried about fragrances, we recommend taking a closer look at an ingredient. And of course, we always recommend speaking with a professional.

Learn more about Parfum

Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate is a chelating agent. Chelating agents help prevent metal ions from binding to other ingredients. This helps prevent unwanted effects and reactions from a product. These metal ions may come from water and are found in miniscule amounts.

Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate can also help other preservatives be more effective.

39
What it does: Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Caprylyl Glycol is a humectant and emollient, meaning it attracts and preserves moisture.

It is a common ingredient in many products, especially those designed to hydrate skin. The primary benefits are retaining moisture, skin softening, and promoting a healthy skin barrier.

Though Caprylyl Glycol is an alcohol derived from fatty acids, it is not the kind that can dry out skin.

This ingredient is also used as a preservative to extend the life of products. It has slight antimicrobial properties.

Learn more about Caprylyl Glycol
40
What it does: Emollient, Emulsifying
Community Rating: Mixed

Glyceryl Caprylate comes from glycerin and caprylic acid, a fatty acid from coconut.

Glyceryl Caprylate is used for its emollient and emulsifier properties.

As an emollient, it helps hydrate your skin. Emollients work by creating a barrier on your skin to trap moisture in, helping to keep your skin soft and smooth.

Glyceryl Caprylate helps keep the ingredients such as oil and water together as an emulsifier.

Learn more about Glyceryl Caprylate
41
What it does: Masking
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Phenethyl Alcohol is a colorless and aromatic alohol. It is naturally occuring in essential oils.

The scent of this ingredient is floral and often compared to rose.

Like other alcohols, this ingredient helps prevent the growth of bacteria. However, its main purpose is to impact a fragrance.

Learn more about Phenethyl Alcohol
42
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Pentylene glycol is typically used within a product to thicken it. It also adds a smooth, soft, and moisturizing feel to the product. It is naturally found in plants such as sugar beets.

The hydrophilic trait of Pentylene Glycol makes it a humectant. As a humectant, Pentylene Glycol helps draw moisture from the air to your skin. This can help keep your skin hydrated.

This property also makes Pentylene Glycol a great texture enhancer. It can help thicken or emulsify a product. Emulsifiers help stabilize a product. It does this by preventing certain ingredients from separating.

Pentylene Glycol also acts as a mild preservative and helps to keep a product microbe-free.

Some people may experience mild eye and skin irritation from Pentylene Glycol. We always recommend speaking with a professional about using this ingredient in your routine.

Pentylene Glycol has a low molecular weight and is part of the 1,2-glycol family.

Learn more about Pentylene Glycol
43
What it does: Buffering, Masking
Community Rating: Disliked

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

If you spot Citric Acid near the end of an ingredient list, it's likely there as a pH adjuster rather than an active ingredient.

As an AHA, Citric Acid removes the top layer of skin cells from the newer layer of skin underneath. This helps skin to remove dark spots and look more even.

Read more about some other popular AHA's here:

Learn more about Citric Acid
44
What it does: Buffering, Masking
Community Rating: Mixed

Sodium Citrate is the sodium salts of citric acid. In skincare, it is used to alter pH levels and acts as a preservative.

Sodium Citrate helps maintain the pH of a product. Normal pH level of skin is slightly acidic (~4.75-5.5). The acidity of our skin is maintained by our glands and skin biome. Being slightly acidic allows our skin to create an "acid mantle". This acid mantle is a thin barrier that protects our skin from bacteria and contaminants.

Sodium Citrate is a chelating agent. It neutralizes metal ions from water and prevents them from binding to other ingredients. This ensures the other ingredients will not be altered.

Learn more about Sodium Citrate
45
What it does: Preservative
Community Rating: Disliked

Potassium Sorbate is a preservative used to prevent yeast and mold in products. It is commonly found in both cosmetic and food products.

Potassium sorbate is potassium salt derived from sorbic acid. Sorbic acid is a natural antibiotic and effective against fungus.

Potassium sorbate and sorbic acid can be found in baked goods, cheeses, dried meats, dried fruit, ice cream, pickles, wine, yogurt, and more.

Potassium sorbate is often used with stronger preservatives.

Learn more about Potassium Sorbate
46
What it does: Masking, Preservative
Community Rating: Disliked

Sodium Benzoate is a preservative. It's used in both cosmetic and food products to inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. It is typically produced synthetically.

Both the US FDA and EU Health Committee have approved the use of sodium benzoate. In the US, levels of 0.1% (of the total product) are allowed.

Sodium benzoate works as a preservative by inhibiting the growth of bacteria inside of cells. It prevents the cell from fermenting a type of sugar using an enzyme called phosphofructokinase.

Sodium Benzoate is the salt of benzoic acid. Foods containing sodium benzoate include soda, salad dressings, condiments, fruit juices, wines, and snack foods.

Studies for using ascorbic acid and sodium benzoate in cosmetics are lacking, especially in skincare routines with multiple steps.

We always recommend speaking with a professional, such as a dermatologist, if you have any concerns.

Learn more about Sodium Benzoate
47
What it does: Perfuming, Solvent
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Limonene is a fragrance that adds scent and taste to a formulation.

It's found in the peel oil of citrus fruits and other plants such as lavender and eucalyptus. The scent of limonene is generally described as "sweet citrus".

Limonene acts as an antioxidant, meaning it helps neutralize free radicals.

When exposed to air, oxidized limonene may sensitize the skin. Because of this, limonene is often avoided by people with sensitive skin.

The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term. For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance.

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48
What it does: Perfuming
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Linalool is a fragrance and helps add scent to products. It's derived from common plants such as cinnamon, mint, citrus, and lavender.

Linalool has the same effect as Limonene when exposed to air. Oxidized linalool can cause allergies and skin sensitivity.

Linalool has a scent that is floral, spicy tropical, and citrus-like.

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49
What it does: Perfuming, UV Absorber
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Benzyl Salicylate is a solvent and fragrance additive. It is an ester of benzyl alcohol and salicylic acid. This ingredient can be naturally found in some plants and plant extracts.

In fragrances, Benzyl Salicylate may be a solvent or a fragrance component. In synthetic musk scents, it is used as a solvent. For floral fragrances such as lilac and jasmine, it is used as a fragrance component. The natural scent of Benzyl Salicylate is described as "lightly-sweet, slightly balsamic".

While Benzyl Salicylate has been associated with contact dermatitis and allergies, emerging studies show it may not be caused by this ingredient alone.

However, this ingredient is often used with fragrances and other components that may cause allergies. It is still listed as a known allergen in the EU. We recommend speaking with a professional if you have concerns.

Another study from 2021 shows Benzyl Salicylate may have anti-inflammatory properties.

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50
What it does: Perfuming

Citral is a fragrance and used to add a lemon-like scent to products. It is both naturally found in plants and created synthetically. In plants, it is commonly occurring in lemon myrtle, lemongrass, lemon tea-tree, lemon verbena, and other citruses.

The EU mandates Citral be listed separately as a fragrance. It is a known allergen and may cause contact dermatitis. Citral can also used as a masking ingredient.

The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term. For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance.

The term 'citral' is a collective term for two geometric isomers: geranial/Citral A and neral/Citral B.

Learn more about Citral
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