Water in skincare products: Why we say ‘no’ to H20 in our products.
Water is easily one of the most vital compounds for human survival.
We need water to power the organs. Quite simply, we can’t live without it.
Consuming water is essential to help skin cells function at their best.
As the water you consume is absorbed into the blood stream, it’s then directed to the skin to strengthen cells, help reduce the visible signs of ageing and brighten a dull complexion.
The skin needs water just like every other organ!
So with this knowledge and with most product labels claiming ‘water’ (or it’s a fancier alternative, ‘aqua’) as the first and therefore primary ingredient taking up the largest portion of your bottle, we’d be forgiven for thinking H20 is an essential addition to your skincare regime…
Well, not so much.
Clever marketing has led many to believe that skin cells love it when water is applied to the skin directly. And while undiluted water applied externally can somewhat benefit dehydrated cells, to sufficiently hydrate and improve cellular function, water must be consumed by drinking it, eating water-dense foods, drinking smoothies and sipping herbal teas.
We might be used to adding water to products, but our scientific understanding of plant extracts tells us there’s a significant downside of water being such a key player in our skincare team.
Here’s the reasons we say ‘no’ to H20 in skincare…
It dilutes the natural activity
Common sense tells us that adding water to a product makes the active ingredients stretch further. Manufacturers can then offer their products for a lower cost making them kinder on the wallet and more consumer friendly.
Win, win, right?
Well, no. Unfortunately, diluting products becomes a double-edged sword. Because while consumers are receiving all the benefits in their wallet, the skin is losing out.
When you see water as a primary ingredient, it’s fair to say that any results achieved from the product are purely created by synthetic activating ingredients and NOT the natural activity as you may have been led to believe.
If the natural activity is diluted, it is very safe to assume that any benefits to the skin are caused by harsher, cheaper and more irritating ingredients that can cause sensitivity and lead to long-term skin concerns.
Vitamin C and water
OK, let’s put our science caps on for a moment.
Anyone who has ever studied the science of plants will know that vitamin C is extremely unstable once extracted from its natural source. Within 30 seconds of exposure to air or water, the vitamin starts to decompose rendering it useless as an active ingredient. While consumers are lapping up products containing all the anti-ageing and antioxidant potential of natural vitamin C, these results are achieved with an artificial derivative of vitamin C, ascorbic acid.
Let’s be very clear here. Ascorbic acid is created synthetically in a lab and is NOT the same as plant-based vitamin C.
If water were added to plant-based vitamin C, science tells us that it would decompose almost instantly. And while we know that natural is best, we certainly don’t advocate applying rotting plant material to the skin!
Ascorbic acid goes hand in hand with water as an ingredient but understand in no uncertain terms that any results experienced are not from plants, regardless of what the marketing claim states.
How to spot water in products
Regulations state that the ingredients used to formulate skincare must be listed in order of volume or mass they’re used in the product. This doesn’t include anything that makes up less than 1% of the product – those ingredients can be listed in any order. The specific percentage of the ingredient isn’t required but if water or aqua (or any other derivative!) it’s listed in one of the top spots, it’s safe to say it can form up to 80% of the formulation.
How is Biologi different?
At Biologi, we don’t add water to our products.
The unique extraction system developed by Biologi founder, Ross Macdougald and exclusive to Biologi products, has allowed Biologi to provide fully active, single-plant ingredient serums that work on the skin exactly as they do in the plant. Rather than diluting the active ingredients with water, instead, every drop of Biologi contains transformative benefits to the skin helping products work faster for more noticeable results.
For consumers seeking active, plant-based skincare, water or aqua listed as an ingredient should sound alarm bells. The two simply cannot go hand in hand.
To purchase waterless, fully active skincare, visit our shop today.