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The Ordinary Amino Acids + B5 Ingredients Explained

2.0   from 3 ratings
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Published on July 13, 2020

Overview

What it is

Serum with 26 ingredients

Cool Features

It is vegan, cruelty-free, and reef safe

Suited For

It has ingredients that are good for dry skin and sensitive skin

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 217 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.

Benefits

Hydrating (2)
Redness Reducing
Reduces Irritation (2)

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
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation Icon
4
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
5
Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Helps reduce irritation Icon
6
Buffering, Humectant
7
Masking, Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
8
Humectant, Moisturising
9
Masking, Skin Conditioning
10
Buffering, Skin Conditioning
11
Masking, Skin Conditioning
12
Masking, Skin Conditioning
13
14
Masking, Skin Conditioning
15
Skin Conditioning
16
Skin Conditioning
17
Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin Icon
18
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
19
Masking, Skin Conditioning
20
Humectant
21
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
22
Solvent
23
Emulsifying
0 / 0
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
24
25
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
26
Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 26 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
Community Rating: Loved

Betaine is a common humectant (a substance that promotes retention of moisture). It's known to be gentle on the skin and can help balance hydration.

Betaine is best for improving hydration and soothing irritated skin. Studies show betaine may help with uneven skin tones.

Betaine is naturally created in the skin and body. The form found within cosmetic products can be either plant-dervied or synthetic.

Learn more about Betaine
4
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Sodium PCA is the sodium salt of pyroglutamic acid and is naturally occurring on human skin.

The PCA stands for pyrrolidone carboxylic acid, a natural amino acid derivative.

Sodium PCA is a has conditioning, anti-inflammatory, and humectant properties. Humectants help hydrate your skin by drawing moisture from the air. This helps keep your skin moisturized.

Learn more about Sodium PCA
5
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Panthenol (also referred to as pro-vitamin B5) is a common ingredient that helps hydrate and soothe the skin.

lt is a humectant, meaning that it helps the skin attract and retain moisture.

Another benefit is the anti-inflammatory abilities. This means that it's great for sensitive, irritation-prone skin.

Once oxidized, panthenol converts to pantothenic acid. Panthothenic acid is found in all living cells.

Learn more about Panthenol
6
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
7
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Arginine is an amino acid that is important for human development. Your body uses is it to produce hair keratin and skin collagen.

As a cosmetic ingredient, Arginine has antioxidant properties and can also help repair damaged skin. This ingredient is derived either synthetically or from animals.

Arginine isn't fungal acne safe when used in the presence of other lipids (fats, fatty acids, oils, esters, etc). Oils and fats occur naturally within the skin, so take caution when using Arginine if you're prone to fungal acne.

Learn more about Arginine
8
What it does: Humectant, Moisturising
Community Rating: Loved

PCA is derived from amino acids and is naturally found in our skin's barrier.

As a humectant, PCA helps draw and hold moisture to the skin. Studies show it is effective at helping the skin stay hydrated long-term.

9
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Aspartic Acid is an amino acid that our bodies produce naturally. It is an antioxidant.

Our body uses Aspartic Acid to help build collagen and elastin. It also plays a role in hydrating skin.

Antioxidants help mitigate damage from free-radical molecules. These are molecules that originate from external sources such as pollution, cigarette smoke, or the sun.

Learn more about Aspartic Acid
10
What it does: Buffering, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Glycine is an amino acid that helps build proteins. It is already present in our skin as our bodies produce them naturally.

Glycine helps keep skin hydrated and reduce signs of aging. Amino acids help transport moisture throughout our skin; glycine already plays a role in helping keep our skin moisturized.

As collagen is made up of glycine and other amino acids, it is believed Glycine may help our skin produce more collagen. Collagen helps keep skin plump and firm.

Learn more about Glycine
11
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Alanine is an amino acid and is already found in the human body.

Alanine has antioxidant properties and can help with anti-aging.

Alanine is used by fibrous proteins such as collagen, elastin, and keratin. These three help make a strong skin barrier. Having a healthy skin barrier leads to more plump and youthful skin.

Learn more about Alanine
12
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Serine is an amino acid naturally found in our body. Our bodies use amino acids to create protein.

Amino-acids help give keep our skin hydrated. They play an important role in the skin barrier, which keeps the skin plump and firm.

Serine is a non-essential amino acid, meaning we don't need to obtain it from eating foods.

Learn more about Serine
13
What it does:
Community Rating: Loved

Threonine is an amino-acid. It helps hydrate the skin and has antioxidant benefits.

Threonine is vital for creating collagen and elastin. Collagen and elastin support youthful and firm skin. Our bodies decrease collagen production naturally with age.

Humans are not able to create threonine and must get it through eating foods such as fish, lentils, poultry, sesame seeds, and more.

Learn more about Threonine
14
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

We don't have a description for Valine.

15
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Proline is an amino-acid. It helps moisturize the skin and plays an important role in creating proteins.

Proline is one of the building blocks for producing collagen. As we age, our bodies produce less collagen. Collagen helps the skin look plump and firm.

In medicine, proline is used as an osmoprotectant. This means it helps prevent oxidative degradation in other drugs.

Our bodies are able to produce proline naturally, but certain conditions may inhibit this production. In that case, proline can be obtained from eating egg whites, soy protein, dairy products, asparagus, mushrooms, and seaweed.

Learn more about Proline
16
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

We don't have a description for Isoleucine.

17
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Lysine HCl is an alpha amino acid salt.

Our skin uses amino acids as a precursor for building protein, and therefore keratins, collagen and elastin.

18
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

We don't have a description for Histidine.

19
What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Phenylalanine is an amino acid. It is a skin soothing and hydrating ingredient. Amino acids play a crucial role in wound healing and skin hydration.

Phenylalanine is also used to help even out skin tone due to its ability to disrupt the melanin production process.

Two structures of phenylalanine exist: L-phenylalanine and D-phenylalanine. L-phenylalanine is essential, this means our bodies cannot produce it naturally and we must get it from foods. Our bodies convert D-phenylalanine to neurotransmitters, and D-phenylalanine is found in our bodies naturally.

Some foods that contain L-phenylalanine include eggs, soybeans, beef, milk.

Learn more about Phenylalanine
20
What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Loved

Glutamic Acid is an amino acid that is found in all living organisms. Our bodies use this to help nerve cells in the brain communicate with other cells.

In cosmetics, glutamic acid is a famous humectant. It draws water from the air to your skin, keeping your skin hydrated (like hyaluronic acid).

An in-vitro study from 2024 found glutamic acid to play a role in inhibiting inflammation and thus a potential skin-soothing ingredient.

Other studies show it to be have potential wound healing, skin barrier repair, and hair growth properties.

Glutamic acid has poor solubility in water and other solvents.

Learn more about Glutamic Acid
21
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
22
What it does: Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Dimethyl Isosorbide is a solvent and helps deliver actives into your skin. It is created from sorbitol.

As a solvent, dimethyl isosorbide helps dissolve other ingredients. This helps ensure even distribution of an ingredient. It may also be used to decrease the thickness of a product.

Studies show dimethyl isosorbide is able to penetrate skin to deliver other ingredients into the skin, making them more effective.

Learn more about Dimethyl Isosorbide
23
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Polysorbate 20 is made by combining ethoxylation of sorbitan, ethylene oxide, and lauric acid. It is a mild cleansing agent, surfactant, and emulsifier.

As a surfactant, it helps collect dirt and oils for washing. Emulsifiers prevent oils and water from separating.

Polysorbate 20 also adds scent to a product. Since it is made using sorbitol, it has a sweet scent. Sorbitol can also be found in fruits such as apples and peaches.

The lauric acid used to create Polysorbate 20 is often derived from coconuts.

Polysorbate 20 may not be fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Polysorbate 20
24
What it does:
Community Rating: Liked

Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate is used to help stabilize a product.

It is a chelating agent, meaning it helps prevent metal ions from binding to other ingredients. This prevents unwanted reactions in products. Metal ions can come into a product via the water ingredient. They are found in trace amounts and are not known to be harmful.

25
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

1,2-Hexanediol is a multi-tasker ingredient. It acts as a preservative to increase shelf-life and can aid other preservatives in preventing microbe growth. 1,2-Hexanediol also helps the skin retain moisture as a humectant.

In products that are water-based, this ingredient can help stabilize perfumes and fragrances. It can also help make the texture of products softer and more smooth.

26
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
Embed Ingredients

Here's what our community thinks of the 26 ingredients in this product ✨

81% are loved or liked
12% have mixed ratings
8% are disliked or very disliked
0% have no rating yet

When to use

We've created a guide with info on when you should use The Ordinary Amino Acids + B5. We've also included some recommended products to use it with, as well as some routine inspiration!

Read our guide on when to use Amino Acids + B5 ->
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

2.0 /5
from 3 ratings
szabo_k's avatar

szabo_k

3 years ago Β· Dry Skin
Review

Not good for me
I have dry skin and I thought this product would be great for me. It burned a little bit and broke me out like crazy after a few...

Not good for me
I have dry skin and I thought this product would be great for me. It burned a little bit and broke me out like crazy after a few days of using. I gave it to my mom and it worked for her. Do not buy this if you have sensitive skin.