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Limonene

icky
What-it-does: perfuming, solvent, deodorant

Details

A super common and cheap fragrance ingredient. It's in many plants, e.g. rosemary, eucalyptus, lavender, lemongrass, peppermint and it's the main component (about 50-90%) of the peel oil of citrus fruits.

It does smell nice but the problem is that it oxidizes on air exposure and the resulting stuff is not good for the skin. Oxidized limonene can cause allergic contact dermatitis and counts as a frequent skin sensitizer

Limonene's nr1 function is definitely being a fragrance component, but there are several studies showing that it's also a penetration enhancer, mainly for oil-loving components.

All in all, limonene has some pros and cons, but - especially if your skin is sensitive - the cons probably outweigh the pros.  

Show me some proof

  • Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, Volume 9 (3)–Sep 1, 2010, Original Contribution: Top 10 botanical ingredients in 2010 anti‐aging creams
  • Matura, Mihály, et al. "Oxidized citrus oil (R-limonene): a frequent skin sensitizer in Europe." Journal of the American academy of dermatology 47.5 (2002): 709-714.
  • Ahmad, Muhammad Mushtaq, et al. "Genetic variability to essential oil composition in four citrus fruit species." Pakistan Journal of Botany 38.2 (2006): 319.
  • Takayama, Kozo, and Tsuneji Nagai. "Limonene and related compounds as potential skin penetration promoters." Drug Development and industrial pharmacy 20.4 (1994): 677-684.
  • Koyama, Yasuo, et al. "Comparative analysis of percutaneous absorption enhancement by d-limonene and oleic acid based on a skin diffusion model." Pharmaceutical research 11.3 (1994): 377-383.

Products with Limonene

Lush Tea Tree Water Toner Lovely Day Botanicals Skin Rescue - Problem Skin Oil The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Revolution Skincare Rosehip Seed Oil - Gold Elixir EVA NYC Mane Magic 10-In-1 Primer Lancôme Tonique Radiance So...? Fresh Floral Body Mist Weleda Refining Toner Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Replenishing Cleansing Oil Emma Hardie Brilliance Facial Oil Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate Votary Cleansing Oil – Rose Geranium And Apricot Fresh Sugar Face Polish Kiehl’s Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash Omorovicza Cleansing Foam So...? Watermelon Body Mist The Jojoba Company Oily Skin Balancer Weleda Skin Food Original Ultra-Rich Cream Aesop Colour Protection Conditioner Australian Gold Moisture Lock Tan Extender COLAB Paradise Fragrance Dry Shampoo Emma Hardie Moringa Balm Garnier Hautklar Tägliches Anti-Pickel Waschgel Lush Breath Of Fresh Air Toner MALIN + GOETZ Grapefruit Face Cleanser Origins Dr. Andrew Weil For Origins Mega-Mushroom Micellar Cleanser Origins Dr. Andrew Weil For Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion The Body Shop Mandarin Energising Face Mist This Works Perfect Legs 100% Natural Scrub rå oils Skin Rescue Face And Body Oil CCS Foot Care Cream Dr. Brandt Dark Spots No More Serum Concentrate Ducray Tonifying Gel Jurlique Lavender Hydrating Mist Kiehl’s Calendula & Aloe Soothing Hydration Mask Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate Lanolips Lemonaid Lip Treatment Lush Angels On Bare Skin Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Overnight Purifying Gel Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Serum Origins Ginzing Peel-Off Mask To Refine And Refresh Ren Clarimatte Invisible Pores Detox Mask Ren Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Oil SauberKunst Winterapfel Shampoo Schaebens Vitamin C Konzentrat The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter The Body Shop Oils Of Life Intensely Revitalising Facial Oil Weleda Gentle Cleansing Milk Apeiron Hydro Sensitiv Creme