No matter what your skin type, one of the ingredients you should absolutely stay clear of is silicone. Or silicones, we should say—because these slippery polymers go under dozens of different names, with new compounds being developed daily.
However, silicon (not silicone) is something you would probably want in your skincare. Read through the end of this article to find out why.
Because they show up on the list of ingredients under so many different names, they are hard to identify and even harder to avoid, as they've become the new normal in beauty formulations, from makeup to skincare to haircare. Most natural skincare enthusiasts and health conscious consumers prefer not to spread silicones over their face as they know this may not be the best idea for a great complexion. Even silicone-based hair products can be bad news for your skin.
Why do cosmetics and beauty brands love silicones? They are cheap, water resistant, and give the product a smooth, silky and luxurious feel. Silicones are used mainly to stabilize and add slip or thickness to the product. Hydrophobic silicones form a seal over the skin, which allows companies to claim longer-lasting (24- to 48-hour) "hydration" benefits.
The easiest way to identify silicones on the ingredients label is by looking for words that end with these:
Cone: Dimethicone, Methicone, Trimethicone, Cyclomethicone, Amodimethicone, Trimethylsilylamodimethicone