Ingredient Dictionary



See polyhydroxy acid

Categories: Leave-On Exfoliant


ferulic acid

A plant-based antioxidant. Research suggests that it provides antioxidant and sun-protective... Read More »

Categories: Plant Extracts, Antioxidants


zinc oxide

Inert earth mineral used as a thickening, whitening, lubricating, and sunscreen ingredient in... Read More »

Categories: Antioxidants, Thickeners/Emulsifiers, Anti-Irritants, Coloring Agents/Pigments


hydrolyzed jojoba esters

Essential fatty acids from the jojoba plant, broken down by water to form a new complex with... Read More »

Categories: Emollients, Plant Extracts



Antioxidant that's considered the most biologically active form of vitamin E. Read More »

Categories: Antioxidants, Vitamins


menthyl anthranilate

Also known as meradimate, this is a synthetic sunscreen active is a partially effective UVA... Read More »

Categories: Sunscreen Actives


L-ascorbic acid

Form of vitamin C that is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent (Sources:... Read More »

Categories: Anti-Irritants, Vitamins, Antioxidants


Glycine soja oil

Oil derived from wild soybeans; it has emollient properties. Read More »

Categories: Antioxidants, Plant Extracts, Emollients


glycolic acid


Categories: Leave-On Exfoliant


Borago officinalis seed oil

See borage seed oil

Categories: Plant Extracts, Emollients, Antioxidants, Anti-Irritants



By-product of uric acid extracted from urea and considered an effective anti-irritant. Read More »

Categories: Anti-Irritants


yerba mate extract

Used for the preparation of the most popular tea-like beverage in South America. It has... Read More »

Categories: Anti-Irritants, Plant Extracts, Antioxidants


olive oil/olive fruit oil

Emollient plant oil similar to many other non-fragrant plant oils. The concept of olive oil having... Read More »

Categories: Emollients, Antioxidants, Plant Extracts, Skin-Identical/Repairing Ingredients


Ortho Tri-Cyclen

Low-dosage birth-control pills (generic norgestimate/ethinyl estradiol) approved for use in the... Read More »

Categories: Prescription Drugs


Camellia japonica

The leaf has been shown in vitro to be potent antioxidant and also able to inhibit the expression... Read More »

Categories: Antioxidants, Plant Extracts


Simmondsia chinensis

See jojoba oil

Categories: Plant Extracts, Emollients, Skin-Identical/Repairing Ingredients


honeysuckle flower extract

Plant extract that functions as an anti-inflammatory agent. It is a very good source of flavonoids... Read More »

Categories: Anti-Irritants, Plant Extracts



Plant species include Matricaria recutita, Chamomilla recutita, and Matricaria chamomilla.... Read More »

Categories: Antibacterial/Anti-Acne, Antioxidants, Plant Extracts


palmitoyl tripeptide-5

See cell-communicating ingredients , peptides

Categories: Cell-Communicating Ingredients


licorice extract

Extract that has anti-inflammatory properties (Source: Healthnotes Review of Complementary and... Read More »

Categories: Plant Extracts, Anti-Irritants


Helianhtus annuus seed oil

See sunflower seed oil

Categories: Emollients, Plant Extracts


Ginkgo biloba leaf extract

Research shows this potent antioxidant helps improve blood flow. It is often used in anti-cellulite... Read More »

Categories: Plant Extracts, Antioxidants


Persicaria hydropiper

Also known as water pepper. All parts of this plant extract have been shown in vitro to be not only... Read More »

Categories: Antioxidants, Plant Extracts


Boerhavia diffusa root extract

Extract from a flowering plant. Animal studies have shown that this plant has strong... Read More »

Categories: Plant Extracts, Antioxidants, Anti-Irritants


ceramide 2

See ceramides

Categories: Skin-Identical/Repairing Ingredients

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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