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Also-called-like-this: Carbamide


Yes, it's the thing that can be found naturally in pee. And in the skin. It is an awesome natural moisturizing factor, aka NMF.  NMFs are important components that help the skin to hold onto water and keep it plump, elastic and hydrated. Urea makes up about 7% of NMFs next to other things such as amino acids (40%), PCA (12%) or Lactate (12%).

What makes urea special, is that it is not only a simple moisturizer, but it is thought to be a "small-molecule regulator of epidermal structure and function" meaning that it has a bunch of extra biological activities. It acts as a mild keratolytic agent (some of its moisturizing action is thought to come from urea's ability to break down bonds in the protein called filaggrin and thus freeing up amino acids in the skin), enhances antimicrobial peptide expression and improves skin barrier function

Being a mild keratolytic agent and strong moisturizer means that high-percentage (10-40%) urea treatments are found effective in a bunch of skin disorders connected to excessive dryness and malfunctioning skin barrier such as ichthyosis, xerosis, psoriasis, eczema and seborrheic dermatitis.  

Overall, just like glycerin, urea is a real oldie but a goodie, a nice ingredient in any moisturizer.

Show me some proof

  • Pan, Michael, et al. "Urea: a comprehensive review of the clinical literature." Dermatology online journal 19.11 (2013).
  • Grether-Beck, Susanne, et al. "Urea uptake enhances barrier function and antimicrobial defense in humans by regulating epidermal gene expression." Journal of Investigative Dermatology 132.6 (2012): 1561-1572.
  • Lodén, Marie. "Role of topical emollients and moisturizers in the treatment of dry skin barrier disorders." American journal of clinical dermatology 4.11 (2003): 771-788.

Products with a known amount of Urea

Other products with Urea

Dermasence Adtop Plus 40 Rohto Mentholatum AD Milky Lotion SVR Xerial 50 Extreme Crème Pieds TIS farmaceutic Urea Cream 30% Uremol 10 Urea 10% Skin Relief Moisturizing Lotion Urisec 10% Urea Cream Hand & Body Treatment Cream For Dry Skin Conditions Urisec 12% Urea Lotion Urisec 22% Urea Cream Accufix Cosmetics Carbamide Intensive Hydration Cream Altruist Dry Skin Repair Cream 10% Urea Auxilium Cura Innovatio Footmender All In One Auxilium Cura Innovatio Footmender All In One Diabetic Avene Akérat 30 Crème Zones Localisées Babaria Crema Manos Urea Anti-Grietas Balea Augencreme Urea Balea Bodylotion Urea Balea Eyecream Urea Balea Med 2in1 Body Milk 15% Urea Bielenda Coarse-Grain Scrub Diamond Microdermabrasion Effect Bioturm Naturkosmetik Hydrating Lotion N°2 Carbaderm Hudkrem 10% Karbamid Carmed Hand Cream Carmed Ultimate Essence Moisturizing Lotion CeraVe SA Smoothing Cream Dermadrate Dry Skin Treatment 10% Urea Cream Dermal Therapy Alpha Hydroxy Lotion Dermal Therapy Heel Balm Platinum Dermal Therapy Very Dry Skin Cream Dermal Therapy Very Dry Skin Lotion DermoFuture Regenerative Rejuvenating Concentrate Du’It Tough Hands For Her Du’It Tough Hands Intensive Skin Repair Elemis Pro Collagen Aqua Infusion Mask Eubos Urea 10% Körperlotion Eubos Urea 5% Face Cream Eucerin Advanced Repair Lotion Eucerin Dermocapillaire Calming Urea Scalp Treatment Eucerin Dry Skin Face Cream 5% Urea Eucerin Replenishing Face Creme 5% Urea Plus Lactate Eucerin Roughness Relief Cream Eucerin Roughness Relief Lotion Eucerin Urea Repair 10% Lotion Eucerin Urea Repair Face Cream Eucerin Urearepair Plus Cream 30% Urea Eucerin Urearepair Plus: 10% Urea Body Lotion Eveline Cosmetics 15% Urea Heel Cream Evidence Skin Care Hydroxy Overnight Mask Evy Daily Repair Mousse Flexitol Hard Skin & Callous Balm Flexitol Intense Overnight Foot Cream