It may not seem like a big deal but the package a product comes in is as important as the formulation of the product itself. Nothing grinds my gears like good skincare products in bad packaging. Grabbing a product off the shelves, looking through the ingredients list and thinking “okay this might work”. But the packaging…An angel loses its wings each time a good formulation is put in a jar. It’s a waste of money to purchase products that are housed in jars because jars are not the best skincare packaging. This is for a number of reasons.
The Most Beneficial Skincare Ingredients Are Unstable
Most of the most beneficial ingredients for our skin are wildly unstable. This means they breakdown in the presence of light and air. Antioxidants, vitamin C, retinol and other anti-aging ingredients all break down in the presence of air. Each time you open a jar, these vulnerable ingredients begin to lose their efficacy, deteriorating with each contact with such external factors as air and light.
When products are housed in jars, they oxidize when they come in contact with air. Or go rancid. Oxidation is a process in which compounds lose electrons. When a product oxidizes, it’s potency is greatly diminished. Oxidized products are less effective at best and very harmful to the skin at worst. When some products oxidize, they accelerate the release of free radicals onto the skin and that’s the opposite of what you want your expensive products to do.
Great ingredients like vitamin c, retinol, ferulic acid, hyaluronic acid, glycolic acid etc help to protect our skin and keep us looking ever young but they are also vulnerable and should be protected. Even the best formulations are not immune to oxidation. It begins the first time a jar is opened. And soon your expensive eye cream is nothing but emollients and emulsifying agents.
Jar Packaging is Unhygienic
But if you’re still unconvinced, I’m here to tell you that not only are products in jars less efficacious, they are not as clean as you think. This is because each time you dip a finger in a jar to scoop up some products, you end up transferring bacteria to the product, contaminating it in the process. Even if the product contains the strongest of preservatives, it will most likely get contaminated if you stick a finger in it. Not even the fancy spatulas that come with some products can save you because it’s impossible to keep those 100% clean at all times.
A contaminated product can trigger acne, irritations and other infections. Bacteria contamination can also mess with the pH of a product which in turn makes the product less effective. People who are prone to atopic dermatitis and eczema are at the most risk. Even if you think you’re hands are clean, bacteria is invisible to the naked eye and you still run a risk of contaminating your product.
The Best Packaging for Your Skincare Products
So now jar packaging are cancelled, what next? Well what’s next is airless packaging of course. Some brands have started adopting the use of airless skincare packaging in the form opaque bottles and squeeze tubes. One would think that most skincare brands would be onto this and they are. But why do they continue to package their products in jars? Simply because they know we love to dip our fingers in jars and well to save some extra cash.
The next time youre in your neighbourhood Sephora or Ulta, disregard the jars and go for airless protective packaging instead. Opaque bottles and squeeze tubes eliminate the need to dip your finger inside a jar to feel the texture of a product. But while they deny us that beautiful feeling, let us find some consolation in the well-evidenced fact that our eye cream and anti-aging moisturizer will work better.