This is the last of a 4-part series about what clean beauty means to Acta Beauty. Clean ingredients have a direct impact on how products feel on the skin.
As a woman in her 50s who prizes the Acta Beauty skincare routine, I can tell you that one of the keys to sticking with and enjoying your skincare routine has to do with how the products feel when you apply them.
It’s very simple: you can have the most amazing product that makes you look radiant, energetic, and vibrant when you wake up in the morning, but if it doesn’t feel good while you’re applying it, or if it feels sticky or tacky several minutes after application, you’re not likely to continue to use it. It’s very difficult to look forward to and stick to a routine that doesn’t offer the additional benefit of being enjoyable while you’re doing it.
Acta Beauty products stand out because they feel elegant and luxurious as you apply them. They’re intentionally designed to be the foundation of a delightful morning and evening self-care routine.
Two types of ingredients can make a difference in how a product feels on your skin: rheology modifiers and humectants.
Plant-Based Stabilizers and Thickeners
Many skincare formulas incorporate the use of a rheology modifier to stabilize or thicken the formula. Rheology modifiers considerably alter the feel of a formula, so it’s important to select the right one.
There are several options available, including plant-based Xanthan Gum or Acacia Senegal Gum, partially synthetic options such as Hydroxyethylcellulose (made by reacting a plant-based cellulose material in the form of wood pulp with ethylene oxide, rendering it an ethoxylated material with the risk of 1,4 dioxane contamination), or fully synthetic choices, like Carbomer. Acta Beauty does not use synthetic or ethoxylated rheology modifiers.
Our favorite rheology modifiers are Xanthan Gum and Acacia Senegal Gum. Would you like to feel the difference in these two rheology modifiers in action? Take a look at two different Acta Beauty products: Illuminating Serum with Vitamin C and Resurfacing Serum with Bakuchiol. See how they feel slightly different when you apply them. They both feel lovely, but they’re different, thanks to the addition of Acacia Senegal Gum in the Illuminating Serum.
Embracing Hydrating Humectants
Clean beauty extends to the choice of humectants in our products. Acta Beauty chooses the plant-based humectants Glycerin and Propanediol, with their excellent hydration properties, over Propylene or Butylene Glycols for our formulas, which are synthetic and can sometimes irritate the skin.
Humectants offer three benefits in a skincare product:
First, in the production process they’re often combined with the plant-based rheology modifier to make it easier to incorporate the ingredients into the overall formulation.
Second, the amount and type of humectant can alter the way a product feels when applied. If you’ve ever used a product that felt sticky or tacky, you could bet money that there is too much humectant, or the wrong type, in the formula for your skin type.
Third, a humectant will draw moisture from the surrounding area and deliver it to our skin. During the winter months, when skin tends to feel drier, using a humectant is an easy way to add extra hydration by drawing humidity from the atmosphere. Glycerin and Propanediol also coat the skin and help reduce transepidermal water loss.
Glycerin is derived from oils or butters, and Propanediol is made from corn sugar. Glycerin is thicker and stickier, so a cosmetic chemist will have to be careful with the input rate in a formula, adjusting it to find the perfect amount.
Clean beauty is all about delivering the best possible experience. Our skincare routine should be an enjoyable part of the day, where we look forward to taking care of ourselves. Products that are safe for our skin and the environment, that make us look radiant and fresh, and that feel elegant when applied are the ones we reach for. Acta Beauty takes care to formulate products that prioritize your skin's well-being, protect the environment, and deliver the results you desire.
Series: What "clean" means to Acta Beauty