Water is an enormous part of the beauty industry—the first ingredient listed on most shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, toners, and creams is typically H20. But environmental concerns have made consumers more mindful of water waste and their ecological footprints. As a result, an emerging trend in the beauty space incorporates water-free products, known as anhydrous beauty, into daily skin and hair routines.
According to dermatologist Dr. Jenny Chiu, beauty products that contain water are breeding grounds for bacteria unless they are pumped up with preservatives. It also means that most active ingredients in those products are heavily diluted, rendering them less effective. “By removing water from a skincare formula, it means there is less use of preservatives. This also allows for a boost of concentration of the actives present in the formula, therefore making it more potent and allowing for greater hydration and improved skin texture and tone,” she explains.
And as far as sustainability goes, using anhydrous products cuts down on water and packaging waste. For example, one container of powdered shampoo is the equivalent of four bottles of a liquid formula. And by eliminating the emulsification process during manufacturing, most brands lower the product’s production energy waste by at least half.
Keep your hair and skin hydrated and happy while doing the planet good. Browse our 10 favorite water-free beauty products, here.