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December 19, 2022
Inorganic or organic substances may or may not contain water. Depending on the presence of water molecules, these substances are divided into two parts known as “anhydrous” and “hydrous.”
Hydrates or hydrous is known to contain water molecules, while anhydrates or anhydrous does not contain water molecules. It’s possible to convert a hydrate to an anhydrate by removing water.
So, when you come across hydrous products, it simply means they are water-based. But when it comes to anhydrous facial product, it refers to oil-based products.
What are anhydrous and hydrous products?
There is a big difference between hydrous and anhydrous products. In this section, you will get a detailed explanation of both of them:
Water and oil typically do not mix well together. However, in skin care products, emulsifying agents are used to blend these two ingredients. Without the emulsifier, these ingredients would not mix.
At times, emulsifying wax is utilized for agitating the water and oil components together. Through this process, skincare companies create hand and body creams. Skincare products that contain water will need preservation, otherwise, bacteria will form. Be weary of products that contains “natural water” without preservatives. These types of products can lead to the development of harmful, infectious bacteria.
Oil-based products do not contain water but rather encompass both liquid oil and cream preparations. Balms and salves are some of the products that fall under the oil-based category, as well as body butters.
The anhydrous facial product is also said to contain solid butter or wax, which has a greasy or oily feel, and is difficult for the skin to absorb properly. All anhydrous-based products are free of preservatives. When there is no water, bacteria cannot be present.
On certain occasions, Vitamin E, which is an antioxidant, gets added to all oil-based products because it can easily extend the shelf life of the oils.
What is the Difference between Moisturization and Hydration?
You should be extremely careful of the marketing ploys which suggest that all oil-based products can “HYDRATE.” These claims are completely false because oil-based skincare products contain no water.
But these oil-based products can moisturize your face, body, or hands. Here, moisturizing means making your face or body less dry. Moisturization can help the skin to create a barrier to protect it from dryness and irritation.
Hydration, on the other hand, is known as an infusion of the skin cells with water to enhance the elasticity of the skin. Using a hydrous moisturizer will not just moisturize the skin, but also hydrate it. Oil-based products will moisturize the skin but cannot hydrate it.
Whether it’s an anhydrous [oil-based] product or a hydrous [water-based] product, its effectiveness will depend predominantly on the type of skin you have. It’s always important to do your due diligence and research before purchasing any skincare products.