Pure glycerin (also called glycerine or glycerol) can be used as an inexpensive and natural moisturizer for the skin. Since it is one of the major ingredients in most high-end moisturizers and lotions, buying glycerin in its pure form is becoming very popular. Before commencing this, it is prudent to understand the benefits and downsides to using pure glycerin for their dry skin.
Benefits of Glycerin
Glycerin is a humectant agent. This means it attracts water, which keeps skin naturally moist. It allows the pores to breathe while it locks in natural moisture, and healthily conditions skin and hair alike. For this reason, it is commonly used in many soaps and lotions.
Most of these effects translate into using the pure form. Dermatologists generally agree that glycerin is safe method of treating dry skin, with relatively few risks.
Glycerin may also be used as treatment for fungal infections and skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.
Side Effects of Pure Glycerin
Although glycerin is generally a safe ingredient when used within lotions or soaps, there are a few risks to using it in its pure form:
Despite the fact that it is a solvent, high concentrations of glycerin can cause clogged pores on rare occasions. This is usually due to a reaction that leaves the pores constricted and thus more prone to clog. However, glycerin is soluble in both water and alcohol, so clogging is abnormal and quite rare.
Pure glycerine can also cause the skin to blister. Being a humectant, glycerin that is not dilluted will draw water from the nearest source possible, which in this case is the skin. This can quickly dehydrate the skin, leading to blistering. For this reason, many dermatologists reccommend using dilluted glycerin.
Using a synthetic pure glycerin can be risky because these products sometime contain harmful chemicals. Always know the source of any purchased pure glycerin.
Peter H. Crawford has been writing professionally since 2004. After studying journalism and English at The Ohio State University, he immediately began composing and reviewing for various publications about dining, nightlife, travel and music. His work has appeared in literature from Chicago to Los Angeles, and all over the nation.