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Petroleum in Cosmetic Skincare Products

Petroleum in Cosmetic Skincare ProductsHow much do you know about petroleum in skincare products? Did you know that petroleum is fundamentally a by-product of the oil industry – originally found coating the bottom of oil rigs in the mid-1800’s? As well as being used as a lubricant in engines, it is also commonly used topically in the belief that it will heal and moisturise the skin. There have been many questions raised recently over its use in cosmetic skincare products.

We have put together below “the good, and not so good” facts about petroleum to help you make an informed decision.

The Good:

  • As petroleum jelly is water-repellent (not water soluble) it helps stop the loss of moisture and helps maintain existing hydration under the skin.
  • Petroleum jelly feels good on your skin, helping to alleviate the feeling of chapping and irritation.
  • The Environmental Working Group considers petroleum jelly in its purest form to be safe.

The Not So Good:

  • Petroleum jelly does nothing to actually hydrate or heal the skin itself.
  • While petroleum jelly may give you the feeling of a softened surface you’re really drying out your pores by keeping out air and moisture.
  • Petroleum jelly forms a seal over the pores of the skin disrupting the body’s ability to eliminate toxins, dirt and contaminants, which would otherwise pass through those pores and exit the skin – potentially creating a greater propensity towards break outs.
  • Being a thick emollient, with extended use petroleum jelly can aggravate the skin contributing to older looking skin.


At McArthur Skincare we believe in the benefits of not having petroleum jelly in cosmetic skincare products. There are alternatives that are petroleum-free and will moisturise and hydrate your skin naturally. Our products are natural and do not contain petrochemicals, parabens or added sulphates. Why not try McArthur Skincare today? Given that the skin is the largest organ of the body which absorbs substances applied to it, it’s nice to be able to use a natural skin care range.

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Greg Kay

One comments on on “Petroleum in Cosmetic Skincare Products

  1. This is eye opening, i noticed that using petroleum jelly for a long time usually make my skin appear dull and wrinkled. Thank you for the fantastic article

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