When we go shopping for cosmetic products, many of us usually don’t read the ingredients on the back of a product. Some of us may have tried but soon after feel discouraged because we don’t quite understand what each of the ingredients really stands for. However, it doesn’t mean we should stop reading ingredients since there are several of them to which we should definitively put more attention. We bring you the list.
Desirable cosmetic ingredients
Vitamins – common cosmetic ingredients include vitamin C and E. Vitamin E acts as a natural antioxidant, protects skin and prevents aging. Vitamin C stimulates collagen production and reduces pigmentation spots.
Retin -A – retinol is a derivative of vitamin A. It is especially useful for people who suffer from acne since it promotes exfoliation and stimulates skin renewal. This valuable ingredient works also as an anti-ageing ingredient because it stimulates epithelial cell growth. Nevertheless, if you have sensitive skin, prone to inflammation, it’s better to avoid products with this ingredient. But, if you decide to use this, don’t forget SPF as well!
Green tea – Green tea improves natural body’s defense system against harmful sun rays. Apart from this, it contains numerous antioxidants which prevent premature ageing. It nurtures the skin and keeps it hydrated.
AHA and BHA acids– also known as fruit acids. These acids are especially effective with pigmentation spots caused by ageing or the sun. AHA acids are found in fruit and sour milk. They also promote exfoliation and skin renewal and thus yield best results in treating wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. BHA acids are miracle workers for oily skin, prone to acne. The difference between AHA and BHA acids is that BHA acids are fat soluble so their effect is stronger and lasts longer.
Ceramides – this weird name actually brings us all the best. Ceramides help forming skin protective layer by holding skin cells together and keeping the skin moisturized.
Hyaluronic acid – this well-known acid is famous for its ability to retain moisture. The younger we are, the more hyaluronic acid we have, and that’s why our skin is so tight and fresh. As we lose hyaluronic acid, our skin becomes wrinkled, dry and loses its muscle tone. The obvious conclusion is that cosmetics with hyaluronic acid restores elasticity and replenishes skin moisture.
Cosmetic ingredients we should avoid
Perfumes – most products contain perfumes. Still, if it is possible, avoid them, primarily because they make our skin dry.
Petroleum jelly and its derivatives – including Vaseline, petroleum, and paraffin. These ingredients make your skin look nurtured, velvet-like, simply said – perfect. Unfortunately, if you have oily skin prone to acne, we must warn you that product containing this ingredient will clog pores and it could aggravate the skin leading to more acne. Also, if your skin is problematic and sensitive, avoid them.
Octyl methoxycinnamate – this compound acts like chemical protective element. It is considered safe though certain studies have shown that it works like an estrogen and accumulates in human breast milk
Parabens– great fuzz was raised over this ingredient. Yet, parabens are also considered safe. What makes them potentially dangerous is their estrogen activity. They can inhibit testosterone and stimulate estrogen production. Ethylparaben has turned out to be completely safe.
In any case, when it comes to cosmetics, you should take some time and pay attention to the ingredients some product contain. Think smart, though. Not everything you read is black or white. The amounts of all ingredients in these products are within the allowed limits and shouldn’t be harmful to humans. Nevertheless, from time to time it’s good to make a break from whatever product you’re using and let your skin rest. It may also happen that your body is not able to “tolerate” not even some of the desirable ingredients we’ve listed. Listen to your body and let it be your cosmetic guide.
Translation: G. Dujmović