What is the oil? Crude oil, sometimes called petroleum, is a fossil fuel that is produced deep in the earth through a process that took millions of years to complete. Millions of years later, almost all of us come into contact with an oil daily. Through a process called fractional distillation, petroleum refineries break the oil in many of its smaller components. Each of these smaller components is composed of molecules called hydrocarbons. The world is full of products that come from oil.
For example, gasoline, Styrofoam, lubricating oils, and many other items are all derivatives of this raw material. How are related to oil and cosmetics? The two seemingly unrelated issues, oil and cosmetics, are closely related in our modern world. Mineral oil and petroleum are the basic ingredients in many cosmetic products today. Both mineral oil and oil have the same origin in fossil fuels. Cosmetics such as foundations, cleansers and moisturizers often contain mineral oil. By locking moisture against the skin, mineral oil on the surface of the skin and can potentially block pores. This can cause the appearance of pimples because the skin can not properly ‘breathe’.
Fragrances in lotions, shampoos, and many other cosmetic products are composed of aromatic hydrocarbons. Perfumes and products containing fragrance can contain hundreds of chemicals to produce a different smell. A significant number of these aromas are derived from petroleum. One popular chemical additive that carries moisture in cosmetics is propylene glycol. It is also an oil. Some products that list propylene glycol as an ingredient include: – Antifreeze – laundry detergent – Painting – Shampoo – Air Latest links propylene glycol to research for serious health problems such as liver and kidney damage and respiratory irritation or nausea if ingested.