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What exactly is squalane?

Squalane, derived from olives.
Squalane, derived from olives.
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One of the newest buzzwords in beauty is squalane. Squa-what? Squalane! You may not have ever heard of it before but its actually something that's found in your body and in many of your skin care products. But what exactly is it?

Squalane is a common lipid that is produced by the skin making up a small portion of our sebum which is responsible for keeping our hair ans skin moisturized and protected from moisture loss and environmental toxins. As we get older (out of our 20s) the production of natural squalane reduces so by applying products that have squalane in them helps to restore that natural barrier to our hair and skin providing a soft and smooth non greasy almost natural like texture. Squalane is also contains antibacterial properties, is antioxidant rich and is also an age fighting emollient. Sounds like the perfect skin and hair product!

When used on the skin squalane can treat eczema, help reduce oily skin for acne sufferers, reduce wrinkles, eliminate scars, lighten freckles, promotes cell growth and reverse UV damage to the skin. When applied to the hair squalane can make hair the hair stronger, softer and shiner.

Squalane and squalene are basically the same thing and you will find both in beauty products. The only difference is that squalane is a more stable version so this is the one you're mostly like to find on shelves. Also note that squalane was once made from shark livers and in some occasions it can still be found. When looking for an animal friendly squalane product look for more that is derived from vegetables most often olives but it is also derived from wheat germ, amaranth seed, palm and rice bran. Manufacturers are not required to state where the squalane is from so you may want to do your research before buying a specific product.

Here are some products that contain squalane made from olives:

Facial moisturizer/treatment:

Indie Lee Squalane Facial Oil, $32

Anti aging:

OSEA Advanced Protection Cream, $98

Moisturizer:

Opas Soap Rose Neroli Lotion, $9.95

Acne treatment:

Dr. Dennis Gross MD Skincare All Over Blemish Solution, $42

Foundation:

Beauty Without Cruelty Foundation, $23.95

Facial cleanser:

Dancing Dingo Balancing Act + Alpha Lipoic Acid, $18

Oil controller:

Andalou Naturals Acai + White Tea Oil Free Moisturizer, $24.95

Exfoliant/scrub:

Philosophy kiss me exfoliating lip scrub, $16

Atzen BALANCE Gentle Exfoliating Scrub, $49

Sunscreen SPF over 30:

Naked Turtle Sunscreen SPF 30, $21.99

Makeup remover:

White Egret Olive Squalane Oil Fragrance Free, $17.99

Moisturizing sunscreen:

Margaritaville Parrot Head 'Floridays' Moisturizing Sunscreen Hydration Lotion SPF 50, $9.59

Facial mask:

Seacret Age Defying Revitalize Thermal Moisture Mask, $279.95

Eye cream:

Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve Whipped Squalane Face & Eye Mousse, $9.50

Shampoo:

HABA Platinum Squalane Lavender Shampoo, $32

Conditioner:

HABA Platinum Squalane Conditioner, $32

Lipstick:

Besame Cosmetics Lipstick, $22

Lip balm:

Kiehl's Lip Balm #1, $7

Styling Gel:

Garren New York Straightening & Styling Gel, $19

Styling Mousse:

Macadamia Oil Cleanse and Style Conditioning Mousse, $13.99

Body oil:

SpaGlo Velvet Body Nourishing Seaweed Oil, $14.99

For a more complete listing of products containing squalane please visit Good Guide and EWG's Skin Deep Cosmetic Database.

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