Blue background with the words your skin does not absorb 60% of what you put on it.

Your skin does not absorb 60% of what you put on it.

Oh, green beauty โ€œexpertsโ€ love to spread this misinformed gem: ๐˜–๐˜ถ๐˜ณ ๐˜ด๐˜ฌ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ ๐˜ข๐˜ฃ๐˜ด๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ฃ๐˜ด ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿถ% ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ฆ๐˜ท๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜บ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ธ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ถ๐˜ต ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ ๐˜ช๐˜ต.

๐–๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐š๐›๐ฌ๐จ๐ซ๐ฉ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง? First, we need to understand what absorption is. Absorption is when a chemical (which remember, everything is a chemical so have no fear) makes its way ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ค the bloodstream. So the claim made above is implying that 60% of what is applied to our skin is absorbed into our bloodstream.

Letโ€™s break this down.

๐…๐ฎ๐ง๐œ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ฌ๐ค๐ข๐ง. Our skinโ€™s primary function is to create a barrier to the outside world. Itโ€™s designed to ensure most things canโ€™t penetrate through and does a superb job of stopping/getting rid of unwanted substances. Your skin barrier, or ๐˜ด๐˜ต๐˜ณ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ถ๐˜ฎ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฆ๐˜ถ๐˜ฎ, has its own armor in place to defend against bacteriaย and products.

๐˜๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ ๐ฌ๐ค๐ข๐ง. Our skin is made up of 3 basic layers: epidermis, dermis, and hypodermis. Most skincare is designed to function on the topmost layer of our skin, our epidermis.

๐‚๐จ๐ฌ๐ฆ๐ž๐ญ๐ข๐œ ๐œ๐ก๐ž๐ฆ๐ข๐ฌ๐ญ๐ซ๐ฒ. This is where chemistry is crucial when formulating skincare products. Products require an effective delivery system to get into the deeper levels of our skin. Some chemicals, like glycerinย and propanediol (which are humectants and are AWESOME), are great delivery agents that ๐’‘๐’†๐’๐’†๐’•๐’“๐’‚๐’•๐’† deeper into the skin. Without an effective delivery system, products will only sit on the top layer of your skin.

๐๐ž๐ง๐ž๐ญ๐ซ๐š๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง โ‰  ๐š๐›๐ฌ๐จ๐ซ๐ฉ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง. Another key factor to consider is ๐’‘๐’†๐’๐’†๐’•๐’“๐’‚๐’•๐’Š๐’๐’, which is VERY different from absorption. Penetration is when a chemical makes its way into the different layers of your skin, BUT not into your bloodstream. Bear in mind the size of chemical molecules, its solubility, formulation,ย and how much is applied are other factors when talking about product penetration. Our bodyย and skin metabolize chemicals all time: processing andย expelling it from our system. Your body is very effectiveย and capable of excreting substances that happen to get absorbed. Cosmetic products are created to penetrate your skin and not absorb into your bloodstream (and if it did, the FDA now classifies that as a drug, not a cosmetic ๐Ÿ˜‰).

๐“๐ก๐ž ๐ฆ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ๐š๐ ๐ž. Simply because SOME chemicals are capable of entering your bloodstream via your skin, does not mean ALL or even 60% of chemicals can, and there is NO SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE to support this 60% claim. Think about it: when you soak in a bath, you donโ€™t come out swelled up like a sponge.

If you hear this myth being reiterated, you now know the facts, so go ahead and slather on your favorite cream, serum, or lotion without fear.
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