When I was a little girl, I was fascinated by my grannie’s potions and lotions.
I would watch as she opened those beautiful jars, picked up a tiny amount of cream with her fingers, and applied them gently all over her face, longing for the day when I could finally do the same.
When that day finally came, I wasn’t interested in playing with them anymore.
Don’t get me wrong, my beautiful friend. I’m still interested in playing with skincare. Just not when it comes in jars. Here’s why:
1. Jar Packaging Spoils The Formula
Retinol. Vitamin C. UV filters. Antioxidants.
All the goodies your skin needs to stay young and healthy aren’t stable. Every time they are exposed to light and air (every time you open the jar, basically), they lose a bit of their effectiveness.
The scientific name of this process is oxidation. Oxidation begins from the very first moment you open the jar, and continues with every use until the best ingredients inside our lotions and potions become completely useless.
How fast? There’s no way to know for sure. Retinol, for example, becomes useless in a month when continually exposed to light. Continually is the key word here.
Oxidation happens slowly. And mostly to the top layer. If you close that lid really quickly after scooping up the product inside, chances are your retinol cream will still be effective a few months down the line.
It’s when you leave that jar open on your bathroom counter for who knows how long that retinol quickly spoils.
Related: Common Antioxidants In Skincare Products (That Should NEVER Be Packaged In Jars!)
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2. Jar Packaging Isn’t Hygienic
But what if you’re already using a basic moisturizer, like Nivea Creme? There’s nothing in there that could oxidise. So, we’re safe, right?
Not exactly. Thing is, picking up the cream with our fingers isn’t exactly the most hygienic thing to do. Even if your hands look clean, there are plenty of germs, dirt, and a whole bunch of other stuff on them you don’t want in your skincare products.
And, once they’re in our cream, it’s only a matter of time before they’ll end up on our face. Ewww!
If your cream doesn’t have a good preservative system (hint: most natural skincare products DON’T), any bacteria that finds their way inside them will start reproducing and spoil it. They may even give you an infection…
P.S. These days, some brands will add a spatula into the bargain to help you scoop out the product safely. Use it!
Related: The Battle Of The Preservatives: Which Is The Best Alternative To Parabens?
Should You Avoid Jar Packaging?
Jar packaging isn’t the best way to store skincare products. But it’s not as bad as people think.
For basic, but thick moisturiser, this type of packaging is the most practical. Put that thick goop in a tube and you won’t be able to get every last drop out.
But, you need to be careful. Always wash your hands before you put them in a jar and close that lid quickly!
The Bottom Line
Jars may look pretty, but they won’t protect your anti-aging skincare products from spoilage and bacteria. If you can, opt for products packaged in opaque and air-tight tubes and bottles.
Do you avoid jar packaging, too? Share your thoughts in the comments below.