Are glucosides harmful? Q: Hello,

I have been researching these and they seem fairly harmless, just
complex sugars.

Also can you explain why decyl glucose is harmful as well as coco

Thank you,


A: Hello Mark,

Both decyl glucose and coco polyglucose are synthetic surfactants used widely in skin care and body care products for their foaming properties. They are not sugars though, but compounds created by reactions between sugars and fatty acids and alcohols, hence their surfactant actions. They are considered milder than most of the other widely used surfactants and foaming agents as is the case with sugar-derived surfactants. What 'considered' means is that based on the testing up to date they irritate the skin at a lesser frequency.
Since there is no effective foaming agent in Nature at the level we have become accustomed to foam, and the market has been seduced into foaming face and body washes and shampoos, these appear in many products that claim to be natural and/or organic. The logic behind it is that of choosing the lesser evil.

All surfactants can be irritants simply because of their action on oils and fats - they strip the skin of its natural protective sebum. Frequent use can leave the skin vulnerable to excessive dryness and sensitivity, which can be compromised further with other irritants. In many cases it is not known why a particular compound is an irritant but the damaging effect becomes evident through contact with the skin. Then comes the research and testing to establish the level of that adverse effect. That doesn't mean that products don't get tested before entering the market, far from that, but the reality of life is that it is only through long and wide application that the truly good or the bad about any compound becomes an established fact.

I hope that this helps.

Ivana K.

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