When it comes to your skincare products, are you an avid reader of the back of the packaging? If you’re not, it’s a good idea to try to be.
Keeping tabs on what’s in your skin care products can help you decide which ones truly are right for your skin.
On your label reading adventures, you may have come across an ingredient called linalool and wondered what it was. So we’re here to tell you all about linalool, what it does, why we add it to some of our skincare products and importantly, is linalool good for the skin.
But before we talk about linalool skincare, here’s why it’s important to keep tabs on the ingredients listed on your skincare products…
The Importance of Checking Skincare Product Labels
Some skin care ingredients can be harsh on the skin. If you have particularly irritable or sensitive skin, you could be making it worse by using a product that contains something like mineral oil, which can add to inflammation and redness, and even be responsible for acne spots and breakouts.
And it isn’t just the ingredients in new products (that you may never have used before) that we should all be interested in. Sometimes, our old favourites go through a change in product formulation, and manufacturers don’t always shout loudly about this.
You might have chosen a skin care product or brand specifically because of what it does for your skin. But over time, the manufacturer might have added an ingredient or taken one away, that means that old faithful product no longer supports the needs of your skin. This could then mean that you suffer breakouts and can’t work out why.
It might not just be ingredients that you choose or avoid that you know are good or bad for your skin either. Sometimes we make considered purchases based on our lifestyles and beliefs.
For example, we might choose to avoid certain animal derived products such as lanolin (from the wool of lambs) or shellac (from crushed up female beetles). It’s unlikely, but product formulations can change, and we could be unwittingly buying something that doesn’t align with our eco credentials any longer.
So anyway, is linalool good for the skin? Let’s find out.
What is Linalool?
Linalool might sound like it’s made for the laundry department of our kitchen cupboards (or is made using the wool of a sheep, but that might just be me) but actually, it’s an entirely natural, plant derived product.
There are around 200 species of plant that contain linalool. They’re mainly from a few families of plants including the herb family of mint and thyme, the tree family of laurels and rosewoods and the citrus fruit family of plants.
In fact, if you were to break down many of the common essential oils, you’d find linalool in them. Lemon, tangerine, rose, and ylang ylang essential oils all contain linalool compounds in them. As do the essential oils of cinnamon, cypress and spearmint, showing that it has a diverse fragrance profile.
Linalool itself is a type of ‘terpene alcohol’ which, despite sounding like a harsh chemical you’d find in a lab, is instead a naturally occurring substance found in these families of plants.
It’s used in many different industries from detergents to soaps and skin care products to add its floral scent (that also has a hint of spiciness) to the mix. Linalool is often described as having a scent similar to that of French lavender and bergamot oil.
When used in skin care products, linalool adds a delicate fragrance. We’ve added linalool to our Rebalance and Reset Cream Cleanser as we love it! It’s a colourless liquid, so it doesn’t affect the colour of the products it’s added to, just the fragrance.
What Does Linalool Do in Skincare?
Linalool is present in thyme essential oil, and there is evidence that thyme oil can be effective at reducing the skin bacteria that can cause acne, called propionibacterium acnes. Studies show that eliminating this bacteria, or at least reducing it, can manage the formation of acne spots and pustules. These studies suggest that this is down to the action of the linalool skin benefits in the thyme oil.
We’ve spoken extensively about acne caused by a buildup of bacteria.
When the pores of the skin become blocked by dirt, old makeup, dead skin cells and excess sebum (the wax like oily substance naturally produced by the skin to keep it supple and moisturised), it can trap this bacteria inside. A build up of this bacteria then contributes to acne breakouts.
There is also evidence that linalool skin benefits extend to having an anti-inflammatory effect on the skin. Inflammation can also lead to acne and other skin conditions such as psoriasis and rosacea. So eliminating inflammation is good news if you have skin that acts a little contrary at times.
Why Is Linalool Used in Skincare Products?
There is a double benefit to adding linaloo to skincare products - it adds a delicate fragrance and it has potential benefits including an anti-inflammatory and an anti anxiety compound.
Linalool as an Anti-Inflammatory
A study in 2002 found that linalool (as well as another form of linalool called an acetate ester known as linalyl acetate) actually have a “major role” as anti-inflammatory agents within the essential oils that they’re present in.
Interestingly, linalool only has these anti-inflammatory properties in its natural form. That is, it will only have this benefit when added to skincare products as a natural ingredient, rather than as a synthetically produced version from a chemistry lab. So it’s best to check your ingredients lists thoroughly.
Here at Sönd, we have used the naturally derived ingredient.
The Anti Anxiety Properties of Linalool in Skincare
Since linalool is present in many different essential oils, many have been subject to research into their anti anxiety properties. For many, many years, essential oils have been used in skincare formulations, as massage oils in a carrier oil and in oil burners to give a sense of calm and relaxation.
Studies have shown that linalool is responsible for the anti anxiety, even mildly sedative effects of these essential oils. They’ve been found to be able to relax the muscles, not actually proving an anti anxiety effect per say but it is highly suggestive of a relaxing effect.
Is Linalool Suitable for Vegans?
Natural linalool is produced 100% from plants, making it entirely suitable for vegans, vegetarians and anyone looking to use cruelty free skincare.
Sönd Skin Care
So not only does linalool have a beautiful fragrance, it also helps to support and calm acne prone or non conformist, stressed out skin. And that’s why we think it’s worthy of being added to our creamy cleanser.
All of our skin care products have been designed to support the needs of all skin types. It’s especially good for those who have acne prone skin or skin that’s particularly oily or dry. So try us today, it could be the best thing you ever did for your skin!
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This article is not meant to treat or diagnose. Please visit your doctor for advice about any health concerns you may have.