If you have ever read the labels of your skincare and makeup products, then we are sure you must have observed this one common ingredient – glycerin. This is one ingredient with so many benefits, it is no surprise that is used in a lot of things, beauty or otherwise.
From combating excessive dryness to reducing visible signs of ageing such fine lines and wrinkles, the moisturising properties of glycerin help to keep your skin super soft, supple and healthy. But before we get into the benefits of glycerin on the face in more detail, let’s find out what exactly glycerin is.
- 1. What is glycerin?
- 2. Benefits of glycerin for face and skin
- i) Reduces the appearance of signs of ageing
- ii) Prevents acne
- iii) Is an excellent moisturiser
- iv) Has skin healing properties
- v) Creates a protective layer
- vi) Suits sensitive skin as well
- 3. How to use glycerin on face
- 4. Frequently asked questions on glycerin benefits for face and skin
1. What is glycerin?
Glycerin, also often called glycerol or glycerine, is nothing but a colourless liquid, which has a mildly sweet flavour with the texture and consistency of a syrup. Glycerin can be natural or synthetic. Natural glycerin is usually found in animal and vegetable fat, which is why it has a lot of benefits for the skin.
The main reason why glycerin is so helpful when it comes to moisturising your skin is that it is a natural humectant. What this means is that it can draw moisture from the surrounding environment and lock it into your skin. Additionally, research also shows that glycerin has the ability to mimic the skin’s natural moisturizing factors and this is what makes it so universally suitable. Cool, isn’t it? Now, let’s find about the benefits.
2. Benefits of glycerin for face and skin
i) Reduces the appearance of signs of ageing
One of the most major benefits of using glycerin on the face is that it helps to reduce as well as prevent visible signs of aging and keeps your skin looking youthful. As we grow older, the moisture levels in the skin drop due to the reducing levels of collagen and elastin being produced. This is why our skin becomes drier, which leads to the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. But when you use glycerin on your face, it helps to draw moisture to the top layers of the skin and keeps it looking young and healthy for a longer period of time.
ii) Prevents acne
Even though glycerin has potent moisturising and hydrating properties, it is completely oil-free and is non-comedogenic. This is why it makes for an excellent moisturiser, even for oily and acne-prone skin. It not only prevents clogged pores, but also soothes and calms existing acne, thereby ensuring that it does not spread.
iii) Is an excellent moisturiser
The humectant property of glycerin is what makes it an excellent moisturiser. Glycerin not only helps attract moisture from the environment, but also ensures evaporation of moisture from the surface of the skin slows down considerably. This is what helps your skin remain soft and supple throughout the day. Additionally, it is important to use glycerin-based moisturizers in the colder months, as they ensure that your skin stays soft, hydrated and supple even during the dry winters.
iv) Has skin healing properties
Dry, parched and damaged skin takes longer to heal. But glycerin helps to not only repair damaged skin and moisturise it, but also to increase cell turnover that plays a major role in healing skin and making it healthy, nourished and conditioned. Additionally, if you suffer from skin problems such as fungal infections, eczema or psoriasis, then applying a topical cream that contains glycerin as one of the main ingredients helps to calm inflammation and heal the skin a lot faster.
v) Creates a protective layer
An amazing benefit of using glycerin on the face is that it helps to increase and thicken the epidermal layer of the skin. What this means is that it forms a protective layer on the surface of the skin to help prevent moisture loss and protects it from harmful elements present in the environment. When your skin is dry and parched, it is damaged and too weak to protect itself from environmental aggressors. But glycerin locks in moisture and gives your skin the protection it needs to remain healthy and hydrated for a longer period of time.
vi) Suits sensitive skin as well
If you have sensitive, acne-prone skin, then it is quite obvious that you need to choose what you put on your skin very carefully. You don’t want to further irritate your skin by using products that could increase inflammation and sensitivity. Glycerin is one ingredient that is completely safe, even for people with sensitive skin. This is because glycerin is non-irritating, non-comedogenic and oil-free, making it an excellent remedy for all your skin concerns, irrespective of how sensitive your skin is.
3. How to use glycerin on face
As a face wash –
A glycerin face wash is excellent for people with dry skin. All you need to do is mix two to three drops of glycerin in your regular cleanser and wash your face as usual. This will prevent that stretchy, itchy feeling that usually follows washing your face if you have dry skin.
As a hydrating toner –
An amazing benefit of using a glycerin-based toner is the pore tightening benefits it offers. Simply mix a couple of drops of glycerin with a natural and organic toner to make your own custom pore-tightening solution.
Nourishing face mask –
Face masks are an excellent way to deliver your skin with the essential nutrients it needs in a quick yet effective manner. To make a glycerin-based face mask, you need two teaspoons of bentonite clay, half a teaspoon of glycerin, two tablespoons of rose water and two drops of any essential oil. Mix well and apply!
4. Frequently asked questions on glycerin benefits for face and skin
Q. Can you leave glycerin on your face overnight?
A. Since glycerin is a humectant, it draws moisture, not just from the surrounding environment, but also from the layers deep within your skin. Therefore, leaving it on overnight will dry your skin and age is faster in the long run. If you are using glycerin in its purest form, it would be wiser to apply it and wash it off after 15-20 minutes.
Q. Can we apply glycerin directly on the face?
A. It is not recommended to apply glycerin directly to the face. Always dilute it with rose water, any lotion or face wash before applying it. Also, it is best to do a patch test to ensure that you don’t develop any allergic reactions.
Q. Can glycerin clog pores?
A. No, it cannot. Glycerin is non-comedogenic, which means that it does not have pore-clogging properties. Therefore, it is completely safe to use even for oily skin and will not clog your pores.