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The Ordinary Aloe 2% + NAG 2% Solution Ingredients Explained

4.5   from 2 ratings
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Published on April 13, 2023 Submitted by bumplebee

Overview

What it is

Serum with 18 ingredients that contains AHA and peptides

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, reducing pores, scar healing, dark spots and better texture

Free From

It doesn't contain any harsh alcohols, common allergens, fragrances, oils, parabens, silicones or sulfates

Fun facts

The Ordinary is from Canada. This product is used in 137 routines created by our community.

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

AHA
Peptides

Benefits

Hydrating
Skin Texture
Reduces Large Pores
Anti-Aging
Dark Spots
Scar Healing
Brightening (2)

Concerns

Irritating (2)
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
Solvent
3
Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
0 / 0
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
4
Masking, Solvent
5
Skin Conditioning
6
Skin Conditioning
7
Skin Conditioning
Peptide IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
8
Skin Conditioning
9
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
10
Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning
11
Emulsifying
May cause irritation Icon
12
Skin Conditioning
13
Buffering, Humectant
14
Buffering, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
AHA IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea IconHelps brighten skin Icon
15
Buffering
16
Skin Conditioning
17
Preservative
Preservative Icon
18
Antimicrobial, Preservative
Preservative Icon

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 18 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: 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
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, Solvent
Community Rating: Disliked

Dipropylene Glycol is a synthetically created stabilizer and solvent. It is a part of the glycol class in the alcohol family.

Dipropylene Glycol helps dissolve and evenly distribute ingredients. It also helps decrease viscosity and thin out texture.

As a masking agent, Dipropylene Glycol can be used to cover the smell of other ingredients. However, it does not have a scent.

Studies show Dipropylene Glycol is considered safe to use in skincare.

Learn more about Dipropylene Glycol
5
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder comes from the aloe plant.

You may know Aloe to be a good sunburn reliever and inflammation reducer. This is because it contains many components that are known to help reduce irritation and itchiness.

Aloe leaves are also great moisturizers. They are naturally rich in polysaccharides, a carbohydrate made of sugars. Polysaccharides are able to mimic the carbs found in the top layer of your skin. This can help keep your skin hydrated.

Aloe contains the antioxidants Vitamins A, C, and E. These vitamins neutralize free radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells, such as pollution.

Aloe does not protect against UV rays, despite it soothing sunburns.

Learn more about Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder
6
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Acetyl Glucosamine is an antioxidant and humectant. It is a form of Vitamin C.

Acetyl Glucosamine helps the skin produce hyaluronic acid and boost hydration.

Antioxidants help fight off free-radicals, molecules that may damage skin cells.

When paired with niacinamide, Acetyl Glucosamine has been shown to be effective at reducing discoloration.

Read more about other types of Vitamin C:

Learn more about Acetyl Glucosamine
7
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

You might know this ingredients as Matrixyl. It is a peptide.

Peptides are building blocks for protein. Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4 consists of five amino acids. These amino acids include: 2 lysines, 2 threonines, and serine

This ingredients tells our body to create more collagen. Collagen is a protein that makes connective tissue. Boosting collagen production leads to a healthier skin barrier. Having a healthy skin barrier means having firm and hydrated skin.

Thus, Matrixyl may help improve the look of wrinkles.

Read more about other common types of peptides here:

Learn more about Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4
8
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Biosaccharide Gum-2.

9
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
10
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
11
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Isoceteth-20 comes from Isocetyl Alcohol. It is an emulsifier. Emulsifiers help stabilize a product. It does this by preventing certain ingredients from separating.

12
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Hydroxymethoxyphenyl Decanone is a synthetically created molecule made to mimic ginger extract.

Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to soothe skin.

According to one study, it is an HA booster, antioxidant, and anti-irritant.

In this study, this ingredient was able to stimulate higher hyaluronic acid levels of the dermal and epidermal layers on a skin-like model. Hyaluronic Acid is a humectant, which means it helps attract moisture to your skin. Humectants help keep skin hydrated.

As an antioxidant, Hydroxymethoxyphenyl Decanone is able to fight off damage from free-radical molecules.

Learn more about Hydroxymethoxyphenyl Decanone
13
What it does: Buffering, Humectant
Community Rating: Liked

Sodium Lactate is the sodium salt of lactic acid, an AHA. It is a humectant and used to adjust the pH of a product.

Sodium Lactate is part of our skin's NMF, or natural moisturizing factor. Our NMF is essential for the hydration of our top skin layers and plasticity of skin.

It also influences our skin's natural acid mantle and pH, which protects our skin from harmful bacteria.

Our NMF is formed from amino acids, lactic acid, sugars, minerals, peptides, and electrolytes. As we age, our NMF naturally depletes. Other sources of NMF depletion include harsh and drying ingredients such as denatured alcohol. Sodium lactate can help replenish our NMF, leading to more hydrated and plump skin.

High percentages of Sodium Lactate can have an exfoliating effect.

Sodium Lactate is produced from fermented sugar.

Learn more about Sodium Lactate
14
What it does: Buffering, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Lactic Acid is an AHA that is derived from fermenting lactose, a carbohydrate from milk. It removes the top layer of old and dead skin cells and helps increase cell turnover.

Benefits of Lactic Acid are that it can help to reduce large pores and reduce the effects of aging. Some potential downsides are that it can be bad for dry skin, cause irritation, worsen eczema, and worsen rosacea.

Not only does it help exfoliate the skin, it helps strengthen the skin's barrier. When applied, lactic acid helps the skin create ceramides.

Lactic acid is an over-the-counter chemical exfoliant that comes from the fermentation of lactose β€” a carbohydrate found in milk.

Legend has it that Cleopatra used to bathe in sour milk to help reduce wrinkles.

Read more about some other popular AHA's here:

Learn more about Lactic Acid
15
What it does: Buffering
Community Rating: Mixed

Sodium Hydroxide is also known as lye or caustic soda. It is used to adjust the pH of products; many ingredients require a specific pH to be effective.

In small amounts, sodium hydroxide is considered safe to use. However, large amounts may cause chemical burns due to its high alkaline.

Your skin has a natural pH and acid mantle. This acid mantle helps prevent harmful bacteria from breaking through. The acid mantle also helps keep your skin hydrated.

"Alkaline" refers to a high pH level. A low pH level would be considered acidic.

Learn more about Sodium Hydroxide
16
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Ethylhexylglycerin (we can't pronounce this either) is commonly used as a preservative and skin softener. It is derived from glyceryl.

You might see Ethylhexylglycerin often paired with other preservatives such as phenoxyethanol. Ethylhexylglycerin has been found to increase the effectiveness of these other preservatives.

17
What it does: Preservative
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent germ and microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

It's often used in formulations along with Caprylyl Glycol to preserve the shelf life of products.

18
What it does: Antimicrobial, Preservative
Community Rating: Disliked

Chlorphenesin is a synthetic preservative. It helps protect a product against bacteria in order to extend shelf life. In most cases, Chlorphenesin is paired with other preservatives such as phenoxyethanol and caprylyl glycol.

Chlorphenesin is a biocide. This means it is able to help fight the microorganisms on our skin. It is also able to fight odor-releasing bacteria.

Chlorphenesin is soluble in both water and glycerin.

Studies show Chlorphenesin is easily absorbed by our skin. You should speak with a skincare professional if you have concerns about using Chlorphenesin.

Learn more about Chlorphenesin
Embed Ingredients

Here's what our community thinks of the 18 ingredients in this product ✨

50% are loved or liked
17% have mixed ratings
28% are disliked or very disliked
6% have no rating yet

When to use

We've created a guide with info on when you should use The Ordinary Aloe 2% + NAG 2% Solution. We've also included some recommended products to use it with, as well as some routine inspiration!

Read our guide on when to use Aloe 2% + NAG 2% Solution ->
Verified by SkinSort

We're dedicated to providing you with the most up-to-date and science-backed ingredient info out there.

The data we've presented on this page has been verified by a member of the SkinSort Team.

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Reviews

4.5 /5
from 2 ratings
Absorbs Well (1) Works Well (1)
MamzelleMarie's avatar

MamzelleMarie

5 months ago Β· Combination Skin
Review

I love this so much I kicked Niacinamide off my routine because this seems to finally be doing all the things Niacinamide was supposed to do for me...

I love this so much I kicked Niacinamide off my routine because this seems to finally be doing all the things Niacinamide was supposed to do for me skin. Now that I have checked the ingredients it makes sense :)
My skin is clearer, less textured and breakout spots fade noticeably faster. It feels amazing and goes great over and under other serums. Absolute new holy grail product.