Lately, Silicone has become a popular ingredient in many hair- and skin-care products, also in tanning lotions. In this article you will find out what silicone is, what it does in tanning lotions and the benefits you can have from using a tanning lotion that contains silicone. In addition, if you think, or have heard, that Silicone in tanning lotions doesn’t do any good or maybe even can be harmful, this article will make you better informed.
Yes, they are!
The short version is that silicone in tanning lotions and other skin-care products is good because it forms a protective barrier on your skin that locks moisturizers and other active ingredients while letting through oxygen in order to let the skin “breathe”.
The kinds of silicone used in tanning lotions are expensive ingredients. Therefore, you will find them only in expensive and exclusive lotions. This makes manufacturers of cheaper lotions inclined to spread negative rumors about the silicone in their competitors’ more high-class products.
Continue to read and you will become an instant expert on silicone in tanning lotions.
What is Silicone?
Silicones (there are several kinds) are made up from molecules of the natural substances Hydrocarbons and Silicon.
In the list of ingredients in tanning lotions, you will normally find them as: Dimethicone, Dimethicone Crosspolymer and Cyclopentasiloxane.
Dimethicone is a denser variant of silicone and Cyclopentasiloxane a lighter. They work in combination to make the silicone smooth and easy to apply while still remaining as a moisture barrier on the skin.
The total amount of silicone in tanning lotions can be from 5% up to 30% for the most exclusive lotions.
What are the features and benefits with Silicone in tanning lotions?
In a tanning lotion, silicones fulfill several tasks. They function as
- Emollients (substances that soften and soothe the skin)
- Emulsifiers (bind together normally non-combinative ingredients)
- Carriers (carry and hold other active ingredients into the skin)
- Moisturisers or Humectants (make the outer layer of the skin softer and smoother)
- Occlusive (form a barrier film over the skin’s outer layers and prevent moisture from evaporating).
Negative rumours about Silicone in tanning lotions.
It is in its last “barrier”-function, silicone often is mistakenly reputed to clog pores, like many of the cheaper alternatives to silicone like hydrogenated castor oil, lanolin and petrolatum, all which are a silicone replacements derived from mineral oil.
The huge advantage of silicon compared to mineral oils, is, however, that silicone is oxygen permeable. This is a useful feature not only in tanning lotions but also for contact lenses. Silicone hydrogel lenses use both their water and silicone content to transmit oxygen to the eye.
There is also another reason behind the rumours trying to discredit silicone. It comes from the bad reputation early and crude variants of silicone got when applied wildly and uncontrolled through injections to enhance certain parts of the body among both women and men.
In November 2006, the American FDA (Food & Drug Administration), that regulates usage of substances for medical and other purposes, fully approved silicone as a safe implant for breast enlargements.
Furthermore, The Cosmetic Ingredient Review's (CIR) Expert Panel has concluded that dimethicone and related polymers are “safe as used in cosmetic formulations.”
The “Rolls-Royce” among tanning lotions.
Devoted Creations, from Oldsmar, Florida, is a world-leader in the development of modern tanning lotions based on Aloe Vera or coconut milk with high amounts of expensive and exclusive silicone in their tanning lotions.