Post by Hannah Tyrrell

In the world of beauty and skincare, understanding what to (and what not to) put on your face can be a struggle. Sciencey words and ingredients sound impressive, but often leave us thinking ‘eh?’. So, if you’ve ever wondered what exactly hyaluronic acid does, you’ve come to the right place, friend…

Hyaluronic Acid

A popular ingredient in the beauty industry, hyaluronic acid deeply hydrates the skin. It’s incredible ability to trap moisture makes it an excellent ingredient for all skin types – dry, oily, young or old. You see, hyaluronic acid is a natural substance that supports youth. That makes it perfect for preventing aging and for restoring youth, by plumping up skin to improve the appearance of fine lines. Not only that, it boasts antioxidants to fight free radical damage too!

Free Radicals

Ah, yes, free radicals. We hear about free radical damage a lot, but what exactly is it? Well, in short, charged particles (such as pollution) can cause damage when they come into contact with skin. These harmful charged particles are collectively known as free radicals.


It’s impossible to hear about free radicals without hearing about antioxidants. That’s because antioxidants help repair damage caused by free radicals. Look for antioxidants in your serums and face creams to stay youthful and to repair skin from damage caused by pollution, the sun and more.


‘No parabens’ is an increasingly common phrase on skincare packaging, but what are they and why are they so bad? Well they’re an ingredient used to prolong shelf life and prevent bacteria growth. But they caused widespread fear in the 90’s due to suggested links to health issues. You may want to limit parabens, but there’s no conclusive evidence to suggest a major cause for concern.

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The literal meaning of this is ‘doesn’t block pores’. Be wary of taking this phrase too literally though, because evidence is on a case-by-case basis. You can’t guarantee a non-comedogenic product won’t block your pores, but you might just be lucky!

Salicylic Acid

Ideal for treating acne, uneven texture and more, salicylic acid is a chemical exfoliant that breaks down the bond between dead skin cells. Why is this useful? Well, dead skin cells block pores, causing outbreaks and blackheads. By breaking these bonds, salicylic acid clears skin and, thanks to its anti-irritant qualities, tackles redness and inflammation too. Expect gorgeous glowing and soothed skin!

Animal Testing

Did you know that animal testing is banned in the EU? That means nothing you buy and use in the UK was ever tested on animals. The reason this still crops up is because the Chinese government still test on animals. This means that if a product is sold in China, it might have been tested on animals. The other grey area with animal testing is whether or not the individual ingredients have been tested on animals at some point. Brands that sing about their lack of animal testing will be safe, but if you’re unsure and this is important to you, do your research.

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100% Vegan

‘Vegan’ can be synonymous with no animal testing, but also guarantees a lack of animal ingredients too. Like Vegan diets, Vegan makeup does not include any products produced by animals, such as honey, beeswax, collagen, gelatin and more. Simple!

Get EcoTools’ 100% Vegan and cruelty free brushes and brand new sponges in our #InFullBloom Edit this April.