There are two types of people – those who read and frantically search for their skincare ingredients… and others. We’re sure the bucket we’re in isn’t much of a mystery, but despite our never-ending obsession with skincare, there are some common ingredients we’re not even aware of.
Today’s spotlight ingredient, allantoin (pronounced uh-lan-toh-in), is often included in serums and moisturizers. But it is rarely talked about! Let’s find out how this extract makes a big difference in skin care products.
Allantoin is most commonly obtained from uric acid, which is a component of urine (EC!). More specifically, mass-produced products like toothpaste, shampoo, and moisturizers often source allantoin from cows – but we don’t want to guess how!
But since we prefer plant-based ingredients, we’re excited to share more about the origins of vegan allantoin. Allantoin can be most commonly obtained from the comfrey plant; However, it is also found in other plants such as chamomile, beets, and wheat sprouts.
The flowering spot of comfrey is native to Europe and Asia. The bushes can get quite stocky, with white, blue, pink or purple flowers and long leaves woven like oversized mint. This herb grows several feet tall and has been used historically for its medicinal and healing properties.
Allantoin uses date back well before the modern calendar, with documented uses dating back to 400 B.C. It is traditionally cultivated in Ticino or as a tea for internal ailments such as bronchitis and excessive bleeding, and early skincare enthusiasts soon discovered allantoin’s topical benefits.
Allantoin is known to support the growth of new skin cells and healthy skin. In ancient times, allantoin was included in compresses and skin applications for its moisturizing and healing properties.
Allantoin in skin care
Modern allantoin uses are more common than we think! Allantoin as an extract, or synthetic allantoin (a stable alternative) in cosmetics plays several roles:
Allantoin, a natural leveling agent, often helps to stabilize cosmetic formulations. This usually increases the effectiveness of the product, helping it to better penetrate the skin or hair shaft.
As previously mentioned, allantoin was started as a cosmetic agent to help heal skin symptoms such as swelling and inflammation. When added to skincare, it can help calm and remove puffiness—especially that troublesome skin around the eyes. It is generally safe even for sensitive skin types!
One of the most unique qualities of allantoin is its ability to naturally aid in the process of skin cell renewal. Supports the shedding of old, dull skin. In its place, we see the formation of smoother, smoother and more radiant skin.
One of the most unique elements of this mysterious product is how it is a powerful natural exfoliator and moisturizer. Allantoin has been shown to enhance the water content of the skin. This makes it a beneficial, natural hydrating addition to any moisturizing skin care product.
Due to the hydrating and exfoliating properties of allantoin, it often supports smoother, smoother, younger-looking skin.
Allantoin Best Practices
Allantoin sounds like a dream, but like the rest of us, it has its drawbacks. Despite the fact that it is generally gentle and safe for sensitive skin, allantoin made from comfrey extract specifically can be an allergen.
It should be noted that there is not always transparency into ingredient formulation or sourcing, so sensitive and reactive skin types should do some research and patch testing for any products that include allantoin as an ingredient.
With that said, people with skin types that would normally be reluctant to try new allantoin products shouldn’t be afraid. Being a non-irritating natural exfoliator that leaves skin more moisturized than it initially was, allantoin is often compatible with dry, acne-prone skin types and even inflamed skin.
As with any new product, work with it slowly as you introduce it into your routine. Note any changes in your skin’s behavior that seem to cause irritation, discomfort, or adverse effects.
Allantoin is a chemical compound often obtained as an extract from plants such as chamomile, wheat, and comfrey.
While allantoin is often obtained from natural sources, synthetic versions of this ingredient are becoming more and more popular in skin care.
Allantoin heals naturally and can help calm swelling and heal wounds.
Allantoin is also a natural exfoliant. Helps get rid of dead skin. While doing so, it promotes the production of renewed skin.
Allantoin, which is wonderfully hydrating, helps the skin to better absorb and retain water content in the outer layers of the skin. This results in more visible hydration and long-lasting skin hydration.
Because allantoin is an anti-inflammatory compound, it is typically compatible with dry skin, acne-prone skin, and sensitive skin types. However, those with known plant allergies should conduct a trial trial of beauty products containing allantoin.
Allantoin commonly appears in moisturizers, serums, and a variety of hair care products, and can be used day and night without the risk of developing a sun allergy.