Benefits of Waterless Skincare: Pure + Undiluted Ingredients – Toups and Co Organics
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New Trend: The Benefits of Waterless Skincare and Why We Love It

New Trend: The Benefits of Waterless Skincare and Why We Love It

There’s a new trend in the skincare world: waterless skincare.

Waterless skincare encourages the use of highly concentrated ingredients. Essentially, all the vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and antioxidants you look for in a moisturizer or serum should be delivered right to your skin cells—without being diluted.

Even though this concept feels new, we’ve practiced waterless skincare at Toups and Co since we opened our doors.

Here are a few reasons why:

  • Water can signal the presence of other ingredients, like antifungals and preservatives that prevent mold growth.

  • Water is typically used to dilute products that are otherwise nutrient-dense.

  • Water is a free resource we have access to at home (no reason to pay for it in our skincare products).

But like any natural skincare ingredient, water has some nuance. It can be included in a healthy skincare routine but needs guidance and intention.

Let’s explore everything you need to know about waterless skincare, why it works, and how you can harness this trend.

Why Is Water a Common Skincare Ingredient?

Usually, water is added to skincare products to take up space. The goal is to dilute more nourishing ingredients (like aloe vera, aha fruit acids, and healthy oils)—and produce a cheaper product for the manufacturer.

In theory, adding water to skincare isn’t too concerning, since it’s a healthy ingredient we need for survival. But in practice, water in skincare does raise some concerns.

3 Reasons to Avoid Water in Skincare

Remember, there is some nuance to using water in skincare, and there are healthy ways to use it. In general, though, it shouldn’t be the standard. Here are some reasons we avoid including water in our skincare products:

  • Preservatives

Water-based products tend to mold. For this reason, many skincare manufacturers include preservatives (like alcohol, parabens, antifungals, and formaldehyde-releasing ingredients) to keep the product intact. If you see water on an ingredients label, there are likely chemicals hiding, too.

  • Emulsifiers

Water doesn’t mix with oil, but oil-based ingredients are frequently used in skincare. This means emulsifiers are included to mix the water, oil, and other ingredients while preserving the product’s texture. Common emulsifiers include alcohol (which can lead to dry skin) and sulfates (which are known hormone disruptors).

  • Diluted Ingredients

Whether you’re using a moisturizer, serum, or mask, your skincare should offer deep nourishment and support. But when water is the first ingredient, it’s difficult to know exactly how much of each advertised ingredient is actually reaching your skin cells.

We find undiluted products to be much more nourishing and effective. We also notice better results after fewer applications.

The Benefits of Waterless Skincare and Why We Love It

The goal of waterless skincare is to build higher expectations for your skincare routine. Healthy plant and animal-based oils are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids that deliver nourishment straight to your skin. These should really be the base ingredients for moisturizers, serums, and face masks.

Undiluted skincare simply delivers better results.

  • Better Absorption

Just like your body, your skin craves real nourishment. Oil-based moisturizers and serums are readily accepted by the skin. These natural ingredients closely mirror the oils our skin already produces. Plus, they’ve been trusted to care for and protect skin health for centuries.

  • Fewer Preservatives

This may seem counterintuitive, but you do want your skincare to eventually go bad. Just like real food, real ingredients don’t last forever. The lack of emulsifiers and preservatives means your skincare product might have a shelf life of six months to a year. This is still plenty of time to use your product without exposing your skin to harmful ingredients.

  • Waterless Skincare Is Highly Concentrated and Nutrient Dense

When your serums and moisturizers aren’t diluted with water, the nutrient-dense ingredients become more highly concentrated. You gain all the benefits of potent antioxidants, anti-inflammatory ingredients, minerals, vitamins, fatty acids, and more—delivered straight to your skin cells.

  • Less Is More

When using waterless skincare, you’ll notice your favorite products last much longer. This is thanks to their higher potency and availability to the skin. Likely, your facial cleanser, moisturizer, and serums will last much longer—and feel twice as soothing and nutrient dense.

Dos and Don’ts: When Is It Appropriate to Use Water in Skincare?

Water in skincare shouldn’t be standard practice. But it can have its time and place in a healthy skincare routine. For example, rose water and other herb-based face sprays perform better when water is included.

With that in mind, here are our dos and don’ts for water in skincare:

  • Don’t Forget to Check the Ingredients Label

If a product isn’t water-based, that doesn’t automatically mean it’s safe. Some skincare products are silicone-based, while others include equally concerning ingredients (like parabens). Make sure to check labels, shop with a trustworthy natural skincare brand, and do your research on ingredients you don’t recognize. The Environmental Working Group is a great place to start.

  • Don’t Use Water in Moisturizers

A good moisturizer needs lightweight and nutrient-dense ingredients that penetrate deep into the skin cells and deliver lasting hydration. Since water encourages a thin and surface-level application, it isn’t ideal for this. Our personal favorite moisturizer is tallow balm (since it’s nearly bioidentical to our own skin), but castor oil, shea butter, cocoa butter, and beeswax are great options, too.

  • Do Include It in Plant and Herb-Based Products

Herbal infusions are the exception to the waterless skincare rule. When water and herbs are combined, they can actually perform better than when they’re applied individually. We even have some water-based makeup products that rely on this principle. Enjoy rose water and herbal face sprays to your heart’s content.

  • Do Use Filtered Water

If water is included in your product in a healthy way, make sure it’s filtered! This ensures you get all the benefits without worrying about water contaminants, like heavy metals and microplastics.

Become Your Own Skincare Advocate

At Toups and Co, it’s our goal to help you become an advocate for your own skin health.

When you learn the science behind good skincare, you’re equipped with the information you need to make an educated decision for yourself and your family.

We love all the benefits of waterless skincare, but we also believe water can fit into a healthy skincare routine when used responsibly. These tips and tricks should help you uncover when to trust water-based products and when to choose something more nutrient dense.

Explore Our Favorite Waterless Skincare

Oil Cleanser

Tallow Balm

Facial Tonic