What is trehalose and why is it good for the skin?

In the world of skincare, conversations are always lively within the community. It's common to come across new/unfamiliar ingredients and trends, especially when they are in your skincare routine. One ingredient that has been discussed is Trehalose. But what is it, and why has it become a favourite among skincare lovers? Let us talk you through what it is and how it benefits the skin. 

What is Trehalose?

Trehalose is a naturally occurring sugar derived from plants and fungi. It is used in skincare products for its moisturising and antioxidant properties. Trehalose, also known as the ‘Resurrection Sugar,’ helps resurrect plants and insects when they experience extreme dehydration and oxidative stress. This is possible because trehalose, during periods of dehydration, has a unique ability to form a gel, preventing cells from dehydration, which, in turn, protects them from damage.

What are the benefits of trehalose to the skin?

The hydrating properties of trehalose are the most important. It can do this as it mimics the skin’s natural moisturising factor (NMF). The NMF is composed mainly of amino acids and various derivatives of these amino acids, such as urocanic acid, salts, sugars, lactic acid, and urea, which all keep the skin’s surface hydrated and supple, preventing dehydration.

Drying ingredients, such as alcohol, cleansing agents, and ageing, deplete the NMF, making the skin feel tight and dry. Using trehalose in skincare helps maintain the natural moisturising factor, keeping the skin plump and healthy.

Trehalose is often used instead of hyaluronic acid in skincare for moisturisation properties. Because it has a smaller molecular size, trehalose is more texturally compatible with some formulations, and because it is naturally derived, it’s less likely to cause sensitivities.

Antioxidant Properties:

Trehalose protects the skin from free radical damage caused by UV exposure and pollution. Free radicals weaken the skin and can cause premature ageing. An antioxidant like trehalose protects the skin from the oxidative damage caused by free radicals. When cells are exposed to environmental stresses such as oxidation, heat, UV and dehydration, trehalose is synthesised, protecting the cells from damage.

Protective Effect:

Trehalose is also known for its ability to strengthen the skin's natural barrier function. By strengthening this barrier, trehalose helps prevent moisture loss, irritation, and sensitivity. This results in softer, smoother, and more supple skin. Its role in maintaining skin health makes it a valuable ingredient in skincare products, particularly for those with sensitive or dry skin concerns.

Calming and Soothing:

Trehalose's soothing properties make it a standout ingredient in skincare. It relieves various skin concerns, including redness, itching, and general discomfort.

For those with sensitive or reactive skin, trehalose gently soothes irritation and reduces inflammation, restoring skin to calm and comfort. Unlike harsh ingredients that can exacerbate sensitivity, trehalose provides gentle yet effective relief, making it a go-to for those with sensitive skin. Its ability to alleviate redness and itching makes it suitable for addressing various skin care issues, from minor irritations to more persistent concerns. Incorporating trehalose into your skincare routine ensures that your skin remains tranquil and balanced, promoting overall health and well-being.

Suitability for Different Skin Types:

For Dry Skin: Trehalose's exceptional hydrating properties make it particularly beneficial for individuals with dry skin. By mimicking the skin's natural moisturising factors, trehalose helps replenish moisture levels, keeping your skin soft and hydrated. Its ability to prevent dehydration and lock in moisture makes it an essential component of skincare routines for those with dry skin concerns.

For Oily Skin: Contrary to popular belief, oily skin requires hydration to maintain balance and prevent excessive oil production. Trehalose's lightweight texture and non-comedogenic nature suit oily skin types. It provides hydration without clogging pores, helping to regulate sebum production and maintain a matte, shine-free appearance. Incorporating trehalose into skincare formulations for oily skin ensures effective hydration without exacerbating oiliness, promoting a clearer, more refined complexion.

For Combination Skin: Combination skin can be challenging to manage due to its varied needs across face areas. Trehalose offers a balanced approach to skincare by providing hydration where needed without overloading oilier areas. Its ability to hydrate dry patches while regulating moisture levels in oilier zones makes it an ideal ingredient for combination skin. By promoting hydration and maintaining skin equilibrium, trehalose helps achieve a harmonious complexion, ensuring all areas feel nourished and comfortable.

For Sensitive Skin: Sensitive skin requires gentle yet effective ingredients to prevent irritation and inflammation. Trehalose's soothing properties make it well-suited for sensitive skin types prone to reactivity. It helps calm inflammation, reduce redness, and alleviate discomfort, restoring balance and comfort to sensitive skin. Trehalose strengthens the skin barrier, providing an added layer of protection against external irritants, making it an excellent choice for those with sensitive or easily irritated skin.

Where you can find Trehalose in our products

You can find trehalose in our two new body creams: Geranium & Jasmine Contouring Body Cream and Bergamot & Cardamom Smoothing Body Cream and also in our brand new product, Ceramide Moisture Boost Essence

 Ceramide Moisture Boost Essence