Throughout the years, the industry has introduced new silicone compounds and found new ways they can work. “Besides their role in pigmented formulations and sunscreens, there have been innovations in new types of silicone that provide additional functionality like emulsification, enhancing foam or adding shine to hair,” says cosmetic chemist Kelly Dobos.
Silicone is an essential ingredient in some sunscreens because it makes it easier to apply to skin so you are less likely to skip a spot. Hypoallergenic, noncomedogenic and utilizing skin-protecting mineral sun filters, MDSolarSciences Mineral Crème SPF 30 ($30) also counts silicone in a few different forms to help safely protect skin from the sun through the use of its silky, easy-to-apply, emollient formula.
Chances are, if you’ve ever used a lip color that’s been billed as long-lasting, or any type of makeup primer, you’ve used something with silicone. The reason: You can’t really apply most cosmetic formulas and make them stay without it. Giving just a touch of color, the paraben-free Sunday Riley Breathable Tinted Primer ($48) has silicone, plus skin-plumping peptides and superhydrating sodium hyaluronate to create a totally natural, yet flawless, look.
Helping to smooth, fill out the hair shaft and even reflect light, silicone is very common in hair products, especially styling aids. Davines Essential MOMO Fluid ($23) does all of the above, giving strands a mega dose of moisture and protecting them from the damaging effects of pollution, thanks to its antioxidantpacked formula.
It’s safe for sensitive skin types, helps treat acne, is overflowing with organic ingredients and contains the natural mineral, silicone dioxide. An oxymoron? Not at all. Tracie Martyn Enzyme Exfoliator ($90) is the go-to glow-inducer for many of Hollywood’s A-listers, mainly because of its almost instantaneous ability to resurface skin.
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