What is Butylene Glycol?

Posted by Elisa Ansar on

What is Butylene Glycol?

Butylene glycol is a water-soluble organic alcohol derived from petroleum. It comes in a liquid form for cosmetic purposes in countless skincare products such as cleansers, moisturizers, masks, makeup and hair care products. 

Butylene glycol has many different roles in skincare formulations (a humectant, solvent, and emollient) and works as an alternative to propylene glycol, a more commonly known controversial ingredient.


Closup of watery liquid


What should you know about butylene glycol?

Butylene glycol is a petroleum-derived organic compound included in skincare as a humectant, solvent, and emollient ingredient. It retains moisture, dissolves elements, and improves the application of creams and different products. Although its effect on skin may not have more significant implications than hydration, butylene glycol can cause irritation and clogged pores.

Technically, anyone can benefit from the hydration effect of butylene glycol. And this organic compound can be safe for those who do not have an allergy to it or have sensitive skin.

As a solvent, butylene glycol works well with ingredients that are not water-soluble and are difficult to dissolve. Therefore, cosmetics include this ingredient for its high compatibility and low toxicity levels.

Benefits of Butylene Glycol for Skin

As a moisturizing ingredient to support texture or effectiveness, butylene glycol may have certain benefits:

  • Attracts water: Butylene glycol is a humectant, meaning it binds water and pulls in hydration to the outer layer of the skin.
  • Enhances penetration: By breaking down hard-to-dissolve active ingredients, butylene glycol can improve penetration. As a result, it helps the product perform more effectively.
  • Conditions and smooths: In addition to being a humectant, butylene glycol may also function as an emollient by creating a barrier on the skin, preventing water loss and softening conditions.

What side effects can butylene glycol have?

It's important to note that because an ingredient derives from petroleum, it isn't automatically dangerous to use. Butylene glycol is considered safe for cosmetic use in its final chemical structure form. Studies show that butylene glycol is an ingredient with low levels of irritation, and the occurrence of allergic contact dermatitis is rare, although still a possibility.

Butylene glycol in cosmetics

Butylene glycol is a versatile ingredient in many products; there isn't one particular way to apply it. However, butylene glycol generally is safe for daily use. When using products containing this ingredient, consult your dermatologist or follow the directions specified on the product label.

The Craft and Care way.

At Craft and Care, we believe in organic and gentle skincare through products derived from environmentally friendly processes. In addition, for sensitive or irritated skin, we recommend care through nourishing and simple ingredients.

For example, our Hydrating Serum is a water-based composition of combined ingredients to nourish the skin. Our serum contains two different concentrations of hyaluronic acid, glyceryl caprylate, glycerin, and more. These components are safe and gentle on the skin, helping to add a light, moisturizing factor to your care.

Specifically, in the care of sensitive skin, it’s essential to apply ingredients that truly nourish and protect.

We wish you well-being and good results in the care of your skin!

butylene glycol hydration

← Older Post Newer Post →


  • Can you help with a formulation to make heavy duty kitchen degreaser for restaurant please. Thank you

    Olivia Nyamwanza on

Leave a comment