Know Your Ingredients: Isohexadecane


What it is
Isohexadecane is a colorless and odorless substance.

What it does
Isohexadecane has a rich and creamy texture that softens and smooths skin without leaving a greasy residue.
This ingredient is also a solvent that is very used in makeup removers to remove all traces of makeup.
In addition, it is used as a thickener in beauty products.

Side effects
Isohexadecane is generally considered to be safe.

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    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Nea, I’m glad you love this kind of posts. And I agree, those inci lists can be daunting. I used to have your same problem (still do sometimes 😉 ) and that’s actually one of the reasons why I started the blog: to have all the info in one place and help others learn more about ingredients too.

  1. anonym says

    Hi! I have noticed that ingredient in a bb cream I want to buy and I have heard that this is a mineraloil? Is this true and can it cause breakouts?

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Anonym, Isohexadecane is derived from oil, just like mineral oil. In fact, it is a component of it, but that doesn’t mean it is bad for you. Quite the opposite, it is considered to be safe when used in cosmetics. And no, it shouldn’t cause breakouts.

  2. anonym says

    Thanks for answering :) I am very skeptical to mineraloil so I am glad but to hear that isohexacedane is safe. I also wonder if myristyl myristate is comedogenic? Some say so, while other rejects it so I am a bit confused.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Anonym, mineral oil is safe too. It’s true it has gained a bad reputation because it is derived from oil, but the type used in cosmetics, which is cosmetic grade mineral oil, undergoes a refining process that removes all the bad impurities, making it safe for use.

      Yes, myristyl myristate is comedogenic. Every time I use it, I break out really badly.

  3. Andrea says

    Isohexadecane is a derivative of petroleum. Not saying it’s bad for you, but there may be environmental effects – not definitive but possibly.

    • Gio says

      Andrea, that’s a good point. I tend to focus on adverse effects on humans, and, for us, isohexadecane is safe. But sadly the effects of most of these ingredients on the environment aren’t studied. If that worries you, definitely opt for natural products.

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