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Why do moisturizers use humectants in their formulation?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Moisturizers use humectant ingredients, such as glycerin, to draw water from the surrounding environment and lock it in. Humectants also help to hold onto water that is applied directly to the skin. In addition, your surface skin cells actually contain natural humectants, called Natural Moisturizing Factors (NMF), which bind to the water that skin produces and keep it in place.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.