You ever wonder how a product can claim to be alcohol “free“ yet you see an ingredient that has alcohol listed behind the first name? Cosmetic products, including those labeled ‘alcohol-free,’ may contain other alcohols, such as cetyl, stearyl, cetearyl, or lanolin alcohol, the FDA guidelines state. These are known as fatty alcohols, and their effects on the skin are quite different from those of ethyl alcohol. In fact, fatty alcohols like cetearyl can actually lock in moisture when used on the skin. Cetyl Alcohol is also another fatty alcohol that comes from vegetable and coconut oils. It is used in hair and skin products because of its ability to provide moisture. Cetyl Alcohol is able to assist in the smoothing and sealing of the hair cuticle, resulting is a soft and silky finish. It is quite different from simple alcohols that can leave your hair and skin dry. Cetearyl Alcohol is another fatty alcohol used in many beauty products. It is an emollient, which can soften the skin and hair. Hair products often contain simple alcohols, which are not god for your hair, because of its ability to lessen the hairs drying time and its ability to lessen the thickness of some ingredients. Even though all alcohol isn’t bad, hair you should still research what you put into your hair. Alcohols you should try to avoid are: Ethanol alcohol, Ethyl alcohol, Propanol alcohol, Alcohol denat, Isopropyl alcohol, Isopropanol alcohol, Benzyl alcohol.
Alcohols that are okay to use on your hair in skin are cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, steryl alcohol, and lauryl alcohol.