Ingredient Dictionary

Best

lauric acid

One of the fatty acids in coconut oil, lauric acid has multiple uses in cosmetics... Read More »

Categories: Skin-Identical/Repairing Ingredients, Antibacterial/Anti-Acne, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

sodium laureth-13 carboxylate

Used primarily as a detergent cleansing agent.  Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

poloxamer 184

A synthetic polymer that functions as a cleansing agent. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

disodium cocoyl glutamate

A cleansing agent derived from coconut. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

PEG-10 rapeseed sterol

A blend of polyethylene glycol (PEG) and the fatty acid component of the rapeseed plant. Used as a... Read More »

Categories: Emollients, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

soapwort

Plant from which is derived an extract with detergent cleansing properties. There is some research... Read More »

Categories: Plant Extracts, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Antibacterial/Anti-Acne

Good

sodium lauryl glucose carboxylate

A gentle cleansing agent that may be derived from coconut or made synthetically. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

PPG-26-Buteth-26

PPG stands for polypropylene glycol, and this ingredient combines PPG with a fatty alcohol.... Read More »

Categories: Emulsifiers, Miscellaneous, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

arachidyl glucoside

A mild surfactant (cleansing) and emulsifying agent, made from... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

cocamidopropyl hydroxysultaine

Mild surfactant. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

PEG-60 hydrogenated castor oil

The chief function of this ingredient is cleansing agent. Read More »

Categories: Emollients, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Plant Extracts

Good

PPG-12 buteth-16

Versatile ingredient composed of several non-volatile alcohols. Functions as a skin-conditioning... Read More »

Categories: Thickeners/Emulsifiers, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

sulfates

Sulfates are a group of ingredients that have many consumers worried but in truth, misinformation, not sulfates, are the actual problem... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

disodium cocoamphodiacetate

Mild detergent cleansing agent. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

sodium PEG-7 olive oil carboxylate

A mild surfactant formed by reacting fatty acids from olive oil esters from polyethylene glycol... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Emollients

Good

polysorbate 20

See polysorbates

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Thickeners/Emulsifiers

Good

lauryl alcohol

See surfactant

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

coco-glucoside

A mixture of fatty alcohol from coconut and glucose. Chiefly functions as a cleansing agent. May be... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

oleic acid

Fatty acid used as a surfactant and thickening agent. Read More »

Categories: Thickeners/Emulsifiers, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

oleth 10

A form of fatty (non-irritating) oleyl alcohol that functions as an emulsifier and surfactant.... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Thickeners/Emulsifiers

Good

sodium cetearyl sulfate

A mixture of stearyl and cetyl sulfate that funtions as a surfactant. Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

bis-PEG-18 methyl ether dimethyl silane

A synthetic skin conditioning agent and surfactant belonging to the chemical class of siloxanes and... Read More »

Categories: Slip Agents, Emollients, Silicones, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

Good

polysorbate 80

See polysorbates

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Thickeners/Emulsifiers

Good

PEG-10 dimethicone

See PEG compound , silicone

Categories: Silicones, Emollients, Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents, Slip Agents

Good

PEG-40 stearate

PEG-40 stearate typically functions as a cleansing agent, but also helps keep ingredients... Read More »

Categories: Surfactants/Detergent Cleansing Agents

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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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