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*A Vitamin B5 derivative
Panthenol is the provitamin of B5 because and is used in cosmetics and beauty products primarily as a lubricant, emollient and moisturizer because of its ability to bind to the hair and penetrate the skin, providing both with lubrication and hydration (Wikipedia).
As an ingredient in shampoos and conditioners, Panthenol's binding properties allow it to coat and seal the hair follicles, lubricating the shaft and making the hair appear shiny. As an ingredient in skin products, Panthenol has been seen to improve hydration, reduce itching and inflammation of the skin and accelerate and improve healing of epidermal wounds; it is also often used in sunburn treatment products. According to research, when Panthenol is applied topically, it penetrates into lower skin layers, is absorbed into skin cells and processed into Pantothenic Acid (commonly known as Vitamin B5). Because it is absorbed deeply into the skin, it adds essential moisture.
Panthenol is also considered a potential acne treatment because of its absorption properties that can counteract bacteria and its anti-inflammatory properties (Source).
Safety Measures/Side Effects:
Pantenol is approved by the FDA and the CIR for use in cosmetics, and the Cosmetics Database finds it to be a rating of 1, due to lack of data. It has been shown to be a skin irritant in some studies, but only at high levels of exposure, unlike the concentrations common in beauty products or cosmetics.
Recommended Products w/ Panthenol:
Moltobene Clay Esthe Pack, Alaffia Shea Honey Nourishing Conditioner, Derma e Peptides Plus Wrinkle Reverse Creme, Pevonia De-Aging Body Lotion, White Sands Volumizing Color Secure Nourishing Shampoo, Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Face Mist, Juice Organics' line of sulfate and paraben free shampoo and conditioners