What's In Your Skincare? The Dimethicone Edition
Polydimethylsiloxane or Dimethicone is a silicone based polymer used in cosmetics to treat dry or scaly skin and minor skin irritations. It is a ubiquitous ingredient and can be found in most creams, lotions, shampoos, conditioners, detanglers, anti-aging formulas and make-up. Its properties give lotions and conditioners a smooth glide on your skin. It also fills in any fine lines or wrinkles which explains its presence in make-up primers and foundations.
The Federal Drug Administration and the Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel have approved its use in personal care products bought over the counter. However, since it forms a non-breathable protective layer on your skin, its regular use can have effects similar to using petroleum products. In fact, its ability to repel water makes it a critical ingredient in Rain-X – the solution you use to coat and protect your vehicle windshield.
Not surprisingly, repeated use could dry your skin out since it prevents many of the skins natural processes including sweating, exfoliation and temperature regulation. In addition to this, dimethicone is bioaccumulative in the environment and is classified as a possible toxin.
For our part, The Owl believes that the best way to nourish skin is to use healing oils and eating a balanced diet. No dimethicones here!
How can you recognize these silicones in your products? ALWAYS read your ingredient labels and watch out for these different names that they can be listed under: