Basic information about oils

The selection of the correct oils is also of great important in creating a successful skincare product. Mineral oils are indeed considerably cheaper, but they do not feel as pleasant on the skin as plant-based natural oils do and more importantly, they do not contain the valuable active ingredients (E. g. vitamins) as plant oils do. In contrast to valuable plant oils, mineral oils are a relatively cheap resource. The greatest problem with mineral oils is however that that in high concentrations they form an impenetrable film (occlusive effect) on the skin. Research by the Dermatological University of Copenhagen has shown that high concentrations of mineral oils can repress the skin’s lipid barrier, which can lead to moisture loss in the skin, and in turn is responsible for dry, cracked and flaky skin. According to experience, this effect can arise in certain cases where inexpensive mineral oils are replaced by valuable plant oils (= a positive incompatibility reaction with subsequent improvement in the skin). Skin-endemic lipids, such as phospholipids and ceramides, ensure that the skin’s lipid barrier is rebuilt and regenerated. However this takes a fairly long time (in the region of 2–6 weeks), during which the skin could still be dry and rough or have visible skin problems. When you change from a product containing mineral oils to a product with plant-based natural oils and skin-endemic lipids, it is not the valuable plant oils and lipids which are responsible for the acute coarseness and dryness of the skin which follows, but the cheap mineral oils previously applied.

Our recommendation: Cosmeticians should enlighten relevant clients about the effect of using mineral oils in the past and ensure that treatment and home skincare with Dr. Baumann SkinIdent products continues, even in the case of an incompatibility reaction, so that a fully-functioning skin barrier of natural lipids and fatty acids can be formed. The incompatibility reaction can be alleviated if lower concentrations of liposomes are used or if a product without liposomes is temporarily used. Thereafter the normal dose of liposomes is recommended.

Mineral oils in dermatology: The occlusive effect of high doses of mineral oils is indeed undesirable when it comes to cosmetic care of a healthy skin. However it can for all intents and purposes be beneficial in the dermatological treatment of skin diseases. Therefore mineral oils in medical creams must be assessed differently to those in cosmetic products.

Mineral oils identified in the INCI declaration:
Mineral oil; petrolatum (vaseline); paraffinum-liquidum; Cera Microcristallina; microcrystalline wax; ozocerite; Ceresin. With the exception of Eucerin: a mixture of lanolin alcohol and vaseline (mineral oil).

Evening primrose oil contains gammo-linoleic acid as essential fatty acid. In many people the metabolic process of building gamma-linoleic acid from linoleic acid is disrupted. This is also often the case with Neurodermitis. Particularly in this case and in the case of very dry skin the administering of evening primrose oil with gamma-linoleic acid is very effective. Even for children with Neurodermitis, skincare with gamma-linoleic acid has turned out to be very beneficial. Unfortunately we do not find this valuable evening primrose oil in all cosmetic products, as it is expensive and difficult to work with due to its sensitivity to oxidation. Due to its unsaturated fatty acids it has the tendency to become slightly rancid. Not every cosmetics manufacturer has the technological know-how to be able to develop an effective antioxidant safeguard against oxidation of the unsaturated fatty acids.

Dr. Baumann SkinIdent uses the following natural oils, which are defined in the chapter “Basic information on active ingredients”: Evening primrose oil, jojoba oil, Shea butter, macadamia nut oil and sesame oil.