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* A lipid and sterol (unsaturated solid alcohol present in fatty tissue) that is either plant or animal derived. It comes in the form of a naturally waxy fat-like substance.
It works as a skin conditioner, thickening agent, stabilizer and water binding agent. Because the skin's natural lipid barrier comprises of cholesterol, this ingredient helps maintain proper functioning in the epidermis by retaining moisture levels and regulating cell activity. It works to strengthen the outer structure of the skin and protect it from dehydration. It also keeps the water and oil parts of an emulsion from separating and controls the viscosity of non-aqueous solutions. Because of it's multi-functional nature, you can find this ingredient in a wide range of personal care products such as facial moisturizer, anti-aging treatment, sunscreen, lipstick, eye cream, foundation, cleanser and hair dye.
Safety Measures/Side Effects:
Biologically speaking, excess or insufficient cholesterol and defects in cholesterol metabolism have all been associated with various pathological conditions. With regards to skincare, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel has assessed the safety of cholesterol and determined it as safe to use in cosmetic formulations. Similarly, the EU Cosmetics Directive permits it to be used in cosmetic products, so long as it complies with the animal-by-products regulations. While this ingredient does not appear to be irritating, toxic or carcinogenic, high doses of it can be teratogenic (initiating abnormal developments) according to some tests. While some clinical data shows its topical application to cause mild skin irritation, it has not been shown to cause sensitization of photo-sensitization.
Recommended Products w/cholesterol:
Aveda Green Science Firming Face Cream, MD Skincare Lift & Lighten Eye Cream, Epionce Eye Renewal Creme