Water Free Skincare line?

Update: I went through my products and realize that I do not use products containing water. As freshnfabgirl pointed out below, water waters down the beneficial ingredients and bulks up the products unnecessarily, making it cost more per ounce. I personally use products containing cetearyl alcohol (not the same as alcohol), dimethicone, glycol or some other non-oily emollient as a base, but in the comments below it is pointed out that many use non-greasy oils very effectively to combat oily skin or acne. (I have not tried this, because using foundations with oil bases in the past has caused me to break out). The rest of my comments about hype and buzz words apply, I believe, quite aptly to our beauty industry.

I love how much I learn by writing in this blog – great stuff and thanks for the comments!!

———————– Original post starts here:

I think I’ve heard it all. I’m not sure what environmental, health, beauty, or fashion principle water violates but is the big industry news really water free skincare?



I did not subscribe to read the article because I don’t need to spend any money or get any more email, but has anyone else heard of this big “industry trend?”

This reminded me of something I’ve been thinking about ever since I read Paula Beguon’s book Don’t Go To the Cosmetics Counter without Me. The beauty industry constituents may have initially been frustrated by there being a new ingredient each month that people were up in arms about, but now they capitalize on it. Every time someone says, “parabens cause cancer!”, “Petroleum products suffocate your skin!”, “Phenoxyethanol is not a safe alternative to parabens,” it gives them another opportunity to come out with a whole line of products and declare them free of whatever the latest concern is.

Beauty hype is about the latest “miracle” ingredient, and the latest criminal ingredient.

Websites like goodguide.com, http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/, cosmeticscop.com can really help you cut through the hype and make informed decisions when buying products, as well as save money! While you might not agree with every conclusion on these websites, it will at least give you what I think is a more balanced informed perspective than the latest marketing. All three websites have LOADS of research behind what they’re saying, and they are not coming from the perspective either of drug of chemical companies, or of the beauty industry itself. (Disclaimer: cosmeticscop.com, aka paulachoice.com, began to make their own products after years of researching other products and their ingredients).

I love natural products. Chemical fragrances have always irritated me, both my skin and respiratory system, while essential oils smell heavenly to me. Plant extracts containing vitamins and antioxidants can be elixirs for our skin. But doing your research on all ingredients, including natural, will help you avoid buying expensive products loaded with natural ingredients that are not formulated intelligently to really solve any problems for you. Formulating a beautiful product is a blend of art and science, and so many companies out there just throw together any blend of natural ingredients, ride the waves of the current trend, and make a lot of money off of consumers who trust the word natural far more than they understand it. Natural products can be formulated with as much carelessness as synthetic products (though you almost never see products formulated entirely one way or another).

Best of luck in your search for the perfect facewash, perfect hydrator, perfect skin balancer, perfect foundation, perfect routine! The science and art behind this industry intrigues me, and the more I learn the more I learn that there is more to learn. Be careful what you put on your skin and don’t get your education from ads!

5 thoughts on “Water Free Skincare line?

  1. Thats why I started making my own products with only organic ingredients. Even the natural companies can be misleading – greenwashing. Water isn’t necessarily bad but when water is present then there is a need for a preservative. There is also generally the need for an emulsifier – to keep the ingredients mixed. Water is also not necessary for great skin care since it doesn’t even really permeate the skin. And if you’ve taken a lotion class, a typical lotion has up to 80% or more of water. So what you’re really paying for is water! I say skip water not just because it indicates that a synthetic preservative is present but also because its a waste of your money! Choose body butters, solid lotions, balms, and the oil cleansing method next time.


    1. I started thinking about my favorite products and they actually have dimethicone, cetearyl alcohol, or some other non-irritating, non-toxic emollient as a base. Definitely can’t do oil here. That’s for people with dry skin.


  2. Your welcome! Its definitely a personal preference but oil free being good for acne isn’t always true for everyone. In science like dissolves like – so using oils to rid yourself of dirty oils is actually the most effective. If you think about water and oil they are opposed – dont mix. I actually have very oily skin and prone to acne and I use an oil based cleanser and strictly oils moisturizer. No water or butters. There are some fantastic oils that are fabulous for acne prone skin like hazelnut, neem, tamanu, jojoba. These oils mimic our own sebum and the neem and tamanu are awesome for scars and healing. The key is to look for non-comedegenic products when you buy something that is oil based or even water – which will mean it shouldnt clog your pores. But I know from having my own battles with acne its a scary thing to try anything new that could even possibly cause a breakout. If you’ve got soemthing that works for you I wouldnt switch. But If you do decide to go for something oil based I recommend switching it in slowly so your skin isn’t shocked. Also a great cleanser that is neither is raw honey! That’s recommended for people with acne as well.


    1. This is very cool! Thanks so much for all the useful information – I think I’ll have to modify this post because I realized nothing I use uses water, haha! I guess I am on with that trend. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s