Move over hyaluronic acid, the original moisture booster is back! Whether youre a skincare pro or a novice, I bet youve noticed the word gylcerine, glycerin or glycerol on almost all the product labels on your vanity. Before all the fancy ingredients shook up the beauty industry, there was a hardworking ingredient that was doing the job of moisturising skin. Glycerine is hyaluronic acids older sister and it is super effective. How does it work? Who can use it? Which products contain it? If you have all these questions and are looking for a lowdown, keep reading.What is glycerine?Glycerine is a naturally occurring compound in the body that is also found in plants. It is derived from them and has been used in skincare formulations for decades. It works as a humectant which means it attracts moisture from the air and infuses it in the topmost layer of the skin. Due to the fact that it has a very low molecular weight (the molecules of glycerine are smaller), it can penetrate deep into the skin and replenish it.Benefits of using glycerine It protects the skin from sources of irritation in the environment like air pollution. It moisturises dry skin very well when paired with heavier oils and creams. It strengthens the skins moisture barrier so that there is less loss of water and the natural oils of the skin can work towards repairing and nourishing it. It acts as a carrier for other skincare ingredients and helps them to make their way deeper into the skin. Gives skin a glowy look.Precautions to take while adding glycerine to your skincare routineThink of glycerine as the one friend who gets along with everyone, no matter who youre hanging out with. There is no drama with this wonder ingredient and it can be paired with most skincare ingredients which is why youll find it in tons of skincare formulas, both drugstore and high-end. However, there is always the tiniest chance of an allergic reaction or irritation, so it is always recommended that you patch test the product or consult your dermatologist.Pros and cons of using glycerinePros It does a great job of moisturising skin because it absorbs moisture from the air and reduces the loss of water. It is naturally-derived, is low-cost and is generally considered to be non-toxic when applied on skin. It thickens the topmost layer of your skin by forming a coating on it. This goes a long way in protecting skin from environmental elements like sun damage and pollution.Cons Using too much glycerine can leave your skin tacky and sticky. It needs to be applied correctly i.e. on damp skin otherwise it will pull up moisture from the deeper layers of the skin, dehydrating it. Mixing glycerine with other ingredients is the job of a cosmetic chemist. You should ideally not mess with the proportions by trying to concoction by yourself at home.How to use glycerine in your skincare routineWith glycerine, the rule is less is more. It can leave skin very sticky when used in excess so youll probably find this ingredient way down the product list. While using it, there are a couple of things you should keep in mind: Wash your face with a cleanser and then apply the glycerine formula on damp skin. If you have sensitive skin, make sure the product youre using doesnt contain a high percentage of glycerine. Something along the lines of 10 per cent is ideal for all skin types. Glycerine can cause sun sensitivity so it is essential to follow up with sunscreen to prevent damage.ConclusionThese days, skincare ingredients enjoy some time in the spotlight and then theyre quickly forgotten. However, glycerine has stayed a cosmetic chemist favourite because of how low-maintenance and skin-friendly it is. Do a patch best before using it on your skin and youre good to go.FAQsWhich products is glycerine most commonly found in?Since glycerine is such a star beauty ingredient, it is very commonly found in soaps, lotions, moisturisers, and toners.Can I use glycerine as an overnight mask?Glycerine attracts moisture from the air and using it very often all night long can result in it drying out your skin. Use a well-formulated product that is especially made to be left overnight to reap maximum skincare benefits.Can I use pure glycerine on my face directly?It can be used directly on your face and suits all skin types but it is advised to avoid doing that as it can cause sensitivity.Are glycerine soaps good for skin?Glycerine soaps are very moisturising and can be great for dry skin. It suits all skin types and has lower pH than other formulas.