Excitement from the cream tube: how emulsifiers dry out your skin

Dry skin is tight, itchy and shows fine lines, redness or rough patches. Do you also regularly stand in front of the mirror and ask yourself why? There are several reasons. A tendency towards dry skin can be innate. Often, however, the problem is self-inflicted by something you would never suspect: emulsifiers.
Emulgatoren – Five Skincare

Photo by Brad Helmink on Unsplash

Emulsifiers: That's why your skin feels tight after cleansing

If the skin on the face is taut, the first impulse is to apply lotion. For many, the first choice is creams with soothing fats to make the uncomfortable feeling go away. At the same time, they usually contain a lot of moisture, because that's just what's missing. In principle, the combination of fats and water is also correct. The problem lies in the fact that both substances need a kind of coupler to bond with each other, the so-called emulsifiers.

The emulsifier turns oil and water into an emulsion that feels good and absorbs quickly. A dream team you could mean. But the emulsifiers have a catch: Once they get on the skin, they can't stop pandering.

While the nourishing substances of the cream have long since been absorbed, the emulsifiers are stored in the skin and diligently continue to combine fats and water. Since there is no more cream, they resort to what is left and couple the skin's own fats with water that comes on your skin, for example when showering or washing your hands.

This is how the skin's own fats are released from your skin barrier and are gradually washed away, the so-called wash-out effect. You are probably already familiar with this phenomenon: Do you often put lotion on your hands and are surprised that they are still so dry? Et voilà.

The result: your skin gets drier with every cream and wash.


What to do? To solve your problem in the long term, it helps you to understand how healthy skin normally balances its moisture balance. In a perfect world, she wouldn't need any outside help at all.

Equilibrium skin takes care of itself

Your sebaceous glands produce fats that protect your skin. Sweat provides moisture. And both are combined with each other via skin emulsifiers such as fatty acids. When the skin is in balance, it produces everything in the right amount.

Use cosmetics without emulsifiers

Unfortunately, the many pollutants, environmental influences and impurities from the outside make it difficult for your skin. Cleaning is of course necessary, but it also interferes with the natural processes. Almost all shower gels, soaps or washing-up liquid already contain emulsifiers in form of surfactants. so you can't avoid it entirely, but you can reduce the amount to a minimum.

Use emulsifier-free facial care. Harness your skin's natural abilities by simply moisturizing with water or our Moisturizing Serum and soothing with pure shea butter, our emulsifier-free Shea Butter Cream or Nourishing Oils. Your skin creates its own emulsion from these additions, which cares for longer and has no yo-yo effect. Rebalance your skin, it will thank you.

☝️ We at FIVE consistently do without emulsifiers in all products.

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"No cream should have more ingredients than you can count on one hand."

Anna Pfeiffer