What is mineral oil?
Mineral oil is a by-product of the distillation of petroleum, it is a colourless and odourless oil. It is generally used in the manufacturing of cosmetics, creams, lotions and ointments because it is lightweight, economical, has a longer shelf life compared to most natural oils and helps to prevent the skin from becoming dry.
So what is all the fuss about using mineral oils?
A study in 2011 found strong evidence that showed that mineral oil hydrocarbons are the biggest contaminant in the human body, adding up to roughly 1 gram per person. Contamination is thought to be through air inhalation, food intake, and absorption through the skin.
Specimens of fat were taken from women who had caesarean sections, and milk samples were collected from the women after giving birth. The results were that both fat and milk samples were contaminated with mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons. It was thought that these compounds had built up over time from continual exposure and are not metabolised by the body. They concluded that cosmetics and beauty products might be with the contamination.
Scientists are concerned about how much mineral oil we are exposed every day that contain contaminants that may have an impact on our health. They’re also said that this subject has not been explored fully to be able to ease our minds.
What does it do to our skin?
Mineral oil sits on top of your skin because the molecules are too big to be absorbed into it thus producing an occlusive layer. This occlusive layer seals off the skin from air, water or anything else getting in (or out). It forms an invisible coating on the surface of the skin that blocks the pores and prevents the skin
Blocked pores means dirt and oil are trapped resulting in blackheads, pimples, whiteheads, etc.
Mineral oil-based products should not used on a sunburn. Because of their occlusive layer, they keep the heat in your skin, worsening sunburn. You may even end up with permanent scarring.
Mineral oil stops moisture being absorbed, it also halts the absorption of the other useful components contained within skin care products. It does not contain anything that will to feed your skin. Keeping our skin hydrated is an impostant factor in maintaining our youthful appearance. Therefore the effect mineral oil has on the skin prevents it from absorbing moisture naturally. It also slows down cell renewal, leading to premature aging of the skin.
Mineral oil is linked to oestrogen dominance, which means there is a high proportion of oestrogen and very little progesterone to stabilise the effect on the body and may exacerbate hormonal imbalances.
Having read the information here will you continue to use mineral oils in your daily skin care routine?
For mature skin I recommend Nu Skin 180° Anti Ageing Skin Therapy System
For all other skin types I recommend Glow All Out Kit