Master Ingredient List

This page is a quick reference for all the ingredients mentioned on the blog. It will fill up as ingredients are mentioned in each new post!

Biotin – a B vitamin important to protein metabolism. It has been used as a supplement for hair and nails for decades, but there is no data supporting these claims. Furthermore, biotin supplements can be dangerous.

Botulinum Toxin – an injectable medication derived from the toxins of Clostridium botulinum bacteria. Common uses include facial rejuvenation (reduction of hyperdynamic wrinkles), treatment of excessive sweating, treatment of migraines.

Collagen – the major protein of connective tissues, including skin. Collagen supplements have shown some promise as a potential strategy for anti-aging and skin quality.

Corticosteroids– anti-inflammatory medications that mimic the stress hormone cortisol which is naturally produced by the adrenal cortex. They can be administered topically, orally or intravenously. ex: prednisone, hydrocortisone, triamcinolone etc

Gluconolactone – a poly-hydroxy acid which imparts some of the benefits of AHAs while causing less irritation. It’s been shown to decrease trans-epidermal water loss by increasing skin barrier function, making it a good starting point for people with sensitive skin.

Glycolic Acid – an alpha-hydroxy acid whose small size allows it to work at the lower levels of the epidermis and even the dermis. It’s been shown to improve skin texture, normalize the production of melanin and even boost the production of collagen and hyaluronic acid over time

Humectants – ingredients that draw water into the skin. They are commonly used in facial moisturizers, body lotions and hand creams. Examples include hyaluronic acid and glycerin.

Hyaluronic Acid – a naturally occurring molecule in the dermis, it is one of “natures moisturizers,” with the ability to attract 1000x its own weight in water. It has risen to prominence in skincare as an ingredient in hydrating products. It is also the most popular dermal filler for soft tissue augmentation.

Hydroxy Acidsorganic compounds whose acidity is due to a hydroxyl group composed of an oxygen atom and a hydrogen atom that the molecule can freely donate when exposed to the skin.  See: glycolic acid, salicylic acid, gluconolactone.

Ketoconazole – an anti-fungal medication commonly used in topical formulations for fungal infections and seborrheic dermatitis. There is some research to suggest that it also has anti-inflammatory and anti-androgenic effects which make it useful for certain kinds of alopecia.

Retinoids – Derived from vitamin A (retinol), retinoids are a family of molecules used for skin conditions ranging from acne to dyspigmentation.  They’re also considered anti-aging powerhouses due to their ability to shallow wrinkles, increase firmness and even skin tone.  Oral versions are used to treat severe acne, psoriasis and a host of other dermatologic conditions and carry significant side effect profiles. Examples: adapalene, tretinoin, tazarotene (all topical), isotretinoin, acitretin (both oral).

Salicylic acid – a beta-hydroxy acid whose lipophilic nature allows it to act within the pore. It has been used in the treatment of acne, seborrheic dermatitis, keratosis pilaris and other conditions

Selenium Sulfide – an anti-fungal medication commonly used in over-the-counter shampoos for dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis).

Skin Protectants – ingredients added to moisturizers and emollients to help seal in moisture by creating a water-impermeable barrier. Examples include petrolatum and dimethicone.

Zinc Pyrithione – an anti-fungal medication commonly used in over-the-counter shampoos for dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis).