Have you ever noticed that the after-shower feeling of delightfully clean skin is replaced by tightness and dryness after using skincare products with alcohol? It's no coincidence. The alcohol in your skincare routine may be more harmful than you think. It's not just the effects of drinking too much, but also what it does to your skin! You may use it thinking that it will get rid of dirt and bacteria, but instead, it can dry out your skin. Dive in with us as we discover the dangers of alcohol in skincare and gentle, plant-based alternatives to try instead!
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
What is alcohol and why is it in skincare products?
Alcohol is a substance that is found in many skincare products. It is made up of ethanol and water, and is often used as a cleansing agent because it is thought to be effective at getting rid of dirt and bacteria. You'll find alcohol in products ranging from toners and astringents to makeup removers and face washes. Alcohol is commonly used as a cleansing agent or solvent because of how cheap it is compared to other ingredients.
Because it's so harsh to bacteria, you'll find alcohol as a key ingredient in hand sanitizers. But, as all of us who are familiar with hand sanitizers know all-too-well, alcohol can be quite drying and harsh on skin. Alcohol inhibits the body's ability to properly moisturize itself. Dry skin needs moisture to keep its plump appearance and avoid fine lines and wrinkles later in life. That's why you should avoid using it in your skincare routine. That's why It's important to read the ingredients list carefully so that you can avoid these products if you want to take care of your skin.
However, alcohol can actually be quite drying and harsh on skin, which is why you should avoid using alcohol-based products in your skincare routine.
The dangers of alcohol in your skincare routine
When you use alcohol in your skincare routine, you're exposing your skin to a substance that can be quite drying and harsh. Alcohol dries skin by removing natural oils and moisture from the topmost layer of the skin. The drying effects of alcohol in skincare can be especially harmful to individuals who have sensitive or dry skin, such as those with eczema, rosacea, or who suffer from psoriasis. Alcohol-based toners and astringents can also aggravate acne because it removes too much healthy skin oil. Additionally, alcohol can cause your skin to become dehydrated, which can lead to a number of other problems, such as premature aging.
Alcohol is often included in skin care products as a way to cleanse the skin. This is because alcohol can evaporate quickly and leave water behind, which carries dirt away. Alcohol-based products are considered quick-melting, for this reason. It does not, however, provide long-term hydration for dry or irritated skin.
Natural Alternatives to Alcohol for Skincare
Now that you know the dangers of alcohol in skincare products, it's time to detoxify your beauty routine! Here are some gentle plant-based options for replacing harmful alcohols in the products you use every day:
Replace Alcohol Toners for Ones with Witch Hazel or Rose Water
Instead of using a toner with alcohol on skin, try using witch hazel instead. It contains astringent properties (causes skin cells to contract) that will help tighten pores and reduce oiliness without drying out or irritating skin. You can also get similar results from rosewater or rosemary essential water. A pea-size amount should be more than enough to cover your whole face. Spritz a plant-based toner on a freshly washed face to tighten skin and get that natural-looking glow.
Replace Alcohol Facial Creams for Ones with Calendula
For rosacea and dry skin, use calendula water to hydrate and soothe. Calendula is an anti-inflammatory plant extract that is incredibly gentle on the skin. It contains vitamins A, C, and E to repair damaged cells and promote new cell growth while improving elasticity for a healthier complexion.
Instead of reaching for astringent lotions with alcohol after cleansing your face, try using ones with aloe vera and witch hazel instead! These two beauties will work together to tighten pores and reduce oiliness without drying or irritating skin. You can also get similar results from rosewater or rosemary essential water.
For dry or itchy winter skin, try using green tea water after cleansing. Green tea is a natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant that helps to soothe and protect skin. It also contains caffeine, which can help reduce the appearance of redness and inflammation.
Replace Alcohol-Based Makeup Removers for Aloe Vera or Coconut Oil Alternatives
When it comes to makeup removers, try using one filled with aloe vera, coconut oil, or olive oil instead of alcohol-based products. Coconut oil is gentle on all types of skin and has natural antibacterial properties. It's also an effective moisturizer that will leave your skin feeling soft and hydrated. Olive oil is a great choice for those with sensitive skin, as it's incredibly gentle and non-irritating. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe dry or irritated skin.
Alcohol-free skincare, PLEASE!
Here are our favorite natural beauty alternatives to alcohol-based products:
Say, "See ya!" to Alcohol . . . (at least, for your skincare regime)
Alcohol is an ingredient found in many skincare products. This cheap, popular astringent has a reputation for being harsh on skin because of its massive drying powers. No thank you. Likewise, it's known to lead to redness or irritation that feels like sunburn when you're exposed to sunlight after applying any product with alcohol.
At its best, alcohol can aggravate your skin to cause redness and irritation. At worst, it may lead to long-term damage such as premature aging of the skin which can also result in fine lines and wrinkles. So if you're looking for long-lasting beauty improvements you need to avoid using any skincare products with alcohol content — even if they claim to be "natural" or "organic". Instead, try products with natural ingredients like witch hazel, rose water, or aloe vera. These ingredients won't make your skin look worse and will actually improve your complexion.
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