Skin Care

Natural preservatives – it works without alcohol

Cosmetics without preservation? This is only possible with waterless products, or if you always touch your cream fresh. But that takes a lot of time – and that is usually in short supply. That’s why I think it’s great to just get out of the pot in the morning. You also? Mostly alcohol is used as a natural preservative. But we’ll tell you: it works differently.




Freshness in the jar – why cosmetics need preservatives

Cosmetics should be kept cool and dark. But before you clear a compartment in the fridge, you do not need an Arctic cold in eternal, black-and-deep night. You can – unless stated otherwise – simply store them at room temperature in the bathroom.


Far more important is a careful handling of the content. For spoiling means 1.) oxidation and 2.) germination. Both are favored as soon as you open the vessel. This allows you to air, ergo oxygen, in. And when removing bacteria, etc. can enter the product.


This keeps your cosmetics fresh longer

Open the vessel only as short as necessary! Do not leave it without a lid for a few minutes after removing it while you continue to make yourself ready.

Always remove the product with freshly washed fingers – or even better – with a clean spatula.

Place pots and vials where they are protected from direct sunlight.

☝️ The FIVE products are not only for the stylish look in Blaugl.


How long are cosmetics durable?

Some people like to buy supplies. Having passed tomatoes and pasta in the house is never wrong. But what about cosmetics? The extra tube of hand cream, for example, if you do not know in your best will in which pocket the last one has been lost.


For cosmetics, there are two variations of shelf life specifications. If your product does not have a datestamp, but the symbol of an open jar with a number in it, it means: the product will remain unopened for 30 months (as specified in the EU Cosmetics Regulation) and, after breaking in, the specified number of months , For example, if the crucible is a 6, you should consume it in 6 months.


Variant two is an imprinted best before date with day, month and year as for food. In this case, this indicates the durability in the closed state. It is usually followed by an indication of how fast it is to use after opening.


Alcohol in skin care

At the cocktail evening with the girls, the Virgin Cocktail might be more of a stopgap for motorists. In cosmetics, however, the alcohol-free version is the first choice in any case. Because – this is no secret – alcohol has a drying effect.


Here we have to briefly differentiate: There are fatty alcohols that have a nourishing effect, and alcohols that quickly volatilize and thereby dry out. Exactly those are used as preservatives because they effectively kill germs.


Why is alcohol so popular in natural cosmetics?

Alcohol is one of the most popular preservatives in natural cosmetics. And we do not want to deny him some advantages. The manufacturers avoid parabens because they are suspected of having a hormonal effect. Essential oils are problematic for allergy sufferers if they react to the particular plant. Alcohol is hypoallergenic and has no profound effects on your body.


Alcohol is also popular because it feels so easy to apply. It gives volume in the crucible, but evaporates quickly in the air. That’s why it feels like the cream is particularly easy to get in. But that also has its downside …


The disadvantages of alcohol

A study [1] shows that alcohol liquefies the lipid structure of the skin even at a low dose. This allows the alcohol to pass other agents into the deeper layers of the skin. However, this also means that alcohol lowers the moisture content of the skin, as water escapes more easily [2].


The researchers also found that alcohol removes lipids from the skin at moderate levels. And these fats are part of the basic recipe of an intact skin barrier.

Nothing lasts forever, not cosmetics, and no matter how high. It consists of fats and liquids that spoil over time, just as in food. In the EU, cosmetics products have to pass some tests before they are allowed on the market. For example, the germ load test is used to check whether a product is sufficiently preserved. If not, you have to readjust.


No artificial preservatives

Also, FIVE products are formulated for long shelf life. What natural cosmetics, even ours, but only with pleasure waived, are synthetic preservatives. Because they are often suspected of acting hormonal, and cause allergies.


There are several natural types of preservation that are just as effective. It is important that they work against a wide range of germs and at the same time are as well tolerated as possible. Alcohol or alcohol is popular because it does not cause allergies. However, preservative alcohol is dehydrating and irritates sensitive skin. Therefore, he is in the criticism and is not suitable especially for sensitive skin. What are the alternatives?


☝️ The INCI list contains preservative alcohol as Alcohol, Alcohol denat. or ethanol.


Preservation, but of course!

Artificial preservatives are a clear no-go for natural beauties like us. ? Fortunately, it is also possible to obtain effective preservatives from nature. But they differ in their effectiveness. And not all work against any kind of destruction. Here is a small overview of which ingredients or substance groups conserve and how.


Preservative oils

Oils and fats become rancid. In concrete terms, they spoil by oxidation when their constituents react with oxygen from the air. The so-called oxidation stability is very different from substance to substance. Oils which have high stability, such as jojoba oil, may therefore have a preservative effect on other fats.



These scavengers, which prevent oxidation damage, are also used to preserve fats. They are often included in the natural plant dyes such as the carotenes, which not only color carrots so strong orange. Vitamins also act as antioxidants, especially vitamin E, which is also listed as tocopherol in the list of ingredients.



They are probably the most widely used preservative in natural cosmetics. Alcohol does not trigger allergic reactions. And it protects against a whole range of germs by broadband action, depriving them of their livelihoods. It works like the rum pot: fruits plus lots of rotations lasts a long time.


Essential oils

They contain the concentrated power of the plant from which they are extracted. Essential oils with antibacterial and / or antimicrobial action prevent germs from thriving in the product. They are also popular for blending conservative alcohol. The becomes so inedible and there are lower taxes on it. In fact, you can usually find essential oils in combination with another preservative because otherwise they would need to be present in very high concentrations.



Also, you know from the kitchen as particularly durable. For example, as breakfast yoghurt or sauerkraut, in which lactic acid bacteria ferment and durchzuäuern the mass. This effectively inhibits germs and bacteria. In addition, ferments bring along a whole host of useful properties. And do not worry: the whole thing is vegan too!


F In order to minimize the need for preservation, FIVE uses waterless formulations, among other things, because water germinates very quickly.


Read also the popular blog article: Why water is not in, but under the care.


The right storage of cosmetics

Ergo: Alcohol brings the moisture balance and the natural protective coat of the skin out of balance and therefore dehydrating and irritating. Your cream, however, should provide your skin with moisture and support the protective function. If it contains alcohol, it can do exactly the opposite.


If your skin tends to fat, you’ll probably enjoy the temporary feeling of lightness. In the long run, however, your skin will be even more greasy to make up for its losses. And with sensitive skin, the reaction often does not wait. It immediately indicates that she feels irritated. That’s why at FIVE, instead of alcohol, we prefer safer preservatives with an additional effect!


Ferment from lactic acid bacteria – and please vegan

For the new FIVE moisturizing serum we rely on a ferment of lactic acid bacteria. Like all our ingredients, that’s vegan, of course. Because lactic acid bacteria are – here the name is misleading – not only in the milk. These bacteria also ferment sauerkraut, for example.


And since we love to catch several flies like the brave little tailor at once, conservation is not the only specialty of the ferment. It also improves the skin moisture significantly. At the same time, it has an antimicrobial effect and is gentle on the skin. Since it consists of quite large molecules, it remains on the skin surface and unlike alcohol has no influence on the skin structure. The ferment of lactic acid bacteria is …


100% natural and biodegradable,

free from lactose and gluten,

free of genetic engineering,

100% vegan and cruelty free.