Have you ever heard of a skin care ingredient called squalane? It’s a bit of an odd word, isn’t it? But if you’ve been using our nourishing skin care products, then you’ve almost certainly used squalane for skin. Perhaps without even knowing it.
In this Article
What is Squalane for Skin
Is Squalane Vegan and Vegetarian Friendly
How Does Squalane Benefit the Skin
How to Use Squalane Oil in a Skincare Routine
Is Squalane in Skincare Good for Acne Prone or Oily Skin
Is Squalane Good for Eczema
What Skincare Products is Squalane Found in
Squalane is an amazing skin care ingredient that helps to hydrate the skin without blocking the pores. This makes squalane ideal for gently hydrating oily skin without the heaviness of some other hydrating ingredients. It also makes it ideal for supporting dry skin without overloading the skin and making it oily.
When we develop our skin care products, we don’t add anything without truly understanding it. If we did, then we wouldn’t be able to truly stand by our product and tell you, our loyal customers and future customers, that we believe in them.
So here’s the lowdown on squalane, what it is, how it works and why you should be using squalane for skin in your skin care regime!
What is Squalane for Skin?
There’s a little bit of science coming up (sorry, but I am a scientist!). I need a touch of it to fully explain what squalane is, how it ends up in skin care products and to answer the question - why is squalane good for skin.
We have a compound in our skin that exists there naturally, called squalene. (Note the ‘e’, so squalene, not squalane.) Squalene is a type of lipid (the scientific name for fats) that helps to keep the skin well hydrated and moisturised.
Squalene is produced by the sebaceous glands, which are in the tiny pores in our skin. The sebaceous glands produce sebum too, the wax like substance that keeps the skin naturally moisturised. Those with oily or acne prone skin types generally produce too much sebum, causing their skin to feel greasy.
The sebum produced by the sebaceous glands is actually a mix of triglycerides (another type of lipid), wax and squalene. It helps to hydrate the skin, but it also helps to protect the natural barrier qualities of our skin, protecting us from dirt and bacteria.
Just like with our collagen reserves, as we age, we naturally begin to lose our levels of squalene. In fact, our squalene production peaks in our teenage years, and really, in terms of this lipid, it’s all downhill from there.
This contributes to the tell-tale signs of ageing that we begin to experience when we reach our 30s. These include the development of fine lines and wrinkles, skin sagging, dryness and an uneven skin tone.
Luckily, there’s an answer to this loss of squalene - squalane!
So, what does squalane do for the skin? Squalene itself is quite unstable outside of the body, as it can turn rancid when it hits oxygen from the air. So researchers have discovered that using a scientific process called hydrogenation to turn squalene into squalane helps.
Hydrogenation is a process whereby an unsaturated lipid, such as squalene, is turned into a saturated lipid, such as squalane. This makes the molecule more stable, more suited to using externally on the skin and gives it a longer shelf life.
Using squalane on the skin helps to hydrate it and keep it nourished.
Is Squalane Vegan and Vegetarian Friendly?
A word for anyone who’s vegan, vegetarian, eco aware or wants to avoid animal derived products in their skin care. Squalane can be derived from animals, namely the livers of sharks.
Most skin care and beauty brands avoid using animal based squalane in favour of using plant based versions. Squalane can be derived from olive oil, rice bran and sugar cane and the squalane we use is 100% plant based. But it's worth checking with other brands.
How Does Squalane Benefit the Skin?
What is squalane good for? We’re glad you asked!
Since squalane has a hydrating effect on the skin, it helps to keep the skin looking healthy and nourished. Healthy, nourished skin also has the benefit of looking younger, so it really is win win.
It Smooths and Hydrates the Skin
Squalane benefits the skin because it acts like an emollient, meaning that it helps to trap moisture into the small spaces between the skin cells, keeping the skin smooth and hydrated.
This is different to how an occlusive type of moisturiser works. Occlusive moisturisers work by forming a physical barrier on the skin to help prevent moisture loss. They can feel heavy and greasy on the skin, often feeling uncomfortable and cause the skin to appear oily.
It Protects the Skin
Another answer to what is squalane good for is that it also has antioxidant properties, that help to protect and nourish the skin. Antioxidants help to neutralise unstable molecules called free radicals that are present in UV light and in the environmental toxins and pollutants that come into contact with the skin.
Free radicals cause damage to the skin cells which leads to premature ageing. So neutralising them with an antioxidant product such as squalane helps to look after the needs of the skin.
It’s Great for All Skin Types
Skin care products that contain squalane benefit the skin, especially those with dry, dehydrated skin. But they’re also particularly beneficial for those with acne prone skin. That’s why we add it to our skin care products because we want to benefit all skin types, especially those with non conformist skin.
Squalane is non comedogenic, meaning that it doesn’t block the pores. This is beneficial to acne prone skin types, as it won’t trap dirt and bacteria in the skin cells, which can lead to more spots and breakouts.
How to Use Squalane Oil in a Skincare Routine
If you’re looking for how to use squalane oil on its own as a pure product, always use it last in your skincare routine. So, use it after your moisturisers and serums. This is because covering squalane with a layer of moisturiser will mean that it won’t be able to sink into your skin, because of the protective skin barrier nature of squalane.
However, if you choose a moisturiser with squalane already in it, you can use it as a normal moisturising product.
Is Squalane in Skincare Good for Acne Prone or Oily Skin?
If you have acne prone or oily skin, then you’ll know that using skincare products that your skin doesn't like, will only lead to more acne breakouts and oiliness.
However, squalane in skincare is suitable for all skin types and can actually be useful for managing acne prone skin. As it’s a lightweight oil, it won’t feel heavy on the skin or make it feel greasy. Even though it’s an oil, it won’t clog the pores.
Is Squalane Good for Eczema?
Squalane has anti-inflammatory properties making it great for soothing irritated skin, such as skin that’s prone to developing eczema. As it’s also hydrating, it will help to soothe the dryness that eczema can cause.
What Skincare Products is Squalane Found in?
Squalane is found in facial moisturisers, serums and facial oils. It’s not thought to cause any skin irritation and is suitable for all skin types and can be used by anyone.
It’s also often added to hair care products, as it makes an excellent hydrator for the hair. It helps to protect the hair from the drying effects of heat damage and tame frizz, without overloading the hair like some oils do.
If you’re interested in trying squalane based products then look no further than the Sönd range of skin care products!
Sources:https://www.healthline.com/health/squalane https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/emollients/ https://www.healthline.com/health/squalane#skin-benefits https://www.healthline.com/health/squalane#for-acne-or-oily-skin
This article is not meant to treat or diagnose. Please visit your doctor for advice about any health concerns you may have.