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The Hydrating Face Moisturizer That Binds Water

The Hydrating Moisturizer That Binds WaterHave you ever wondered whether hydrating the skin is the same as moisturizing it? A lot of times these words are used interchangeably, but they actually mean different things.  Some people even look for a hydrating face moisturizer because their skin is still dry even though they use a moisturizer daily.


Hydrating the skin means to bind water to the skin, while moisturizing means to prevent the water from leaving the skin.


Oils are very good at moisturizing, but you have to hydrate first to get the full benefit.  So it is possible to have dry skin, even if you use a moisturizer daily.


One of the best hydrating ingredients is hyaluronic acid (aka sodium hyaluronate), which I love to use to reduce the appearance of wrinkles. (I am 43 but please don’t tell my husband!)  Annmarie Skin Care has it in their anti-aging serum.  Have you tried it?  What do you think?


And Crunchi, whose makeup I use and love because it works, is made with pigments that are EcoCert certified, and are NOT made in China (as so many are) carries a Daylight Cream, which I believe is a hydrating face moisturizer.


I have been using Crunchi Daylight Cream for 3 months now exclusively, and I am happy to report that my skin looks and feels younger.  And it does not cause any irritation or acne. I recently went to the high desert, where the climate is obviously very dry. My skin got very dry, but not the skin on my face, thanks to the Crunchi non-toxic hydrating moisturizer; it remained normal and looked and felt great.


Without further ado let’s look at this hydrating face moisturizer ingredients:


Water (Aqua), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice*, Glycerin*, Montmorillonite (Mineral Water), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Propanediol, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Polyglyceryl-2 Isostearate, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Polyglyceryl-2 Oleate, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Polyglyceryl-2 Stearate, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil*, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Organic Citrus Sinensis (Sweet Orange) Peel Oil*, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai Berry) Pulp Powder*, Lycium Chinense (Goji) Fruit*, Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme) Leaf*, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Powder*, Phenethyl alcohol, Ethylhexylglycerin *Certified Organic Ingredients


Let me re-organize them for you to make them easier to read and understand.


The ingredients that make this skin care product hydrating:


Water and Mineral Water:  Every cream and lotion has to have water.  Water is one of the hydrating ingredients.


Sodium Hyaluronate (a form of Hyaluronic Acid): is the sodium salt of hyaluronic acid.  It is also part of our bodies, a natural component of connective tissues such as cartilage. It is rated 1 with fair data in the Skin Deep database.  Compared to other skincare ingredients, it has the greatest capacity to hold water (source).  And that’s why sodium hyaluronate makes the best ingredient for a truly hydrating face moisturizer. I am so happy that Crunchi uses it now because there was a time when I searched all over for a skincare product with it and without potentially irritating ingredients and found only one, which in the end I was not very happy with.


Chondrus Crispus Extract: is another great hydrating ingredient.  It is a powerful sea kelp that plumps and firms the skin and reduces the appearance of fine wrinkles.  Know that there are a number of websites that state that it is comedogenic, meaning that it causes acne.  However, they do not provide any references, and it is unclear where they are getting their information.  That’s why I used it for at least 3 months before writing this review to make sure that I don’t get any acne. I haven’t, and believe me, I expected I might because my skin can be very sensitive.


Organic Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice:  This is another ingredient, which makes this product a great hydrating face moisturizer. It enhances the appearance of dry or damaged skin by reducing flaking and restoring suppleness (source).


Great organic moisturizing oils:


Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil

Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil

Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil

Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oi




Every cream or lotion has to have emulsifiers, the ingredients that bind water and oils together.  The emulsifiers are often a source of some concern. There are three emulsifiers used in the Crunchi hydrating moisturizer: Polyglyceryl-2 Stearate, Polyglyceryl-2 Oleate, and Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate.


The all belong to the group of polyglyceryls (poly = many and glyceryl = glycerine).  They are polymers of glycerine molecules that have been joined together.


In 2016, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review assessed polyglyceryls for safety as used in cosmetic formulations.  They were found to be safe.  There is limited data on them though.  However, what gives me peace of mind is that they are EcoCert-certified and are naturally derived without any chemicals added in the process of derivation.


Other Hydrating Face Moisturizer Ingredients:


Glycerin: is commonly used in creams and lotions to prevent them from drying out.  It also conditions the skin (source).


Propanediol: is often confused with propylene glycol, which it is not.  Unlike propylene glycol, propanediol is not listed as an allergen by the American Contact Dermatitis Society.  I was also unable to find any information linking it with irritation or allergic contact dermatitis.  And it is rated 1 with fair data in the Skin Deep database.


Disteardimonium Hectorite: is rated 1 with no data in the Skin Deep database; an ingredient is based on naturally occurring clay mineral hectorite; this ingredient is used as a thickening agent.


Other Organic Botanical Ingredients:


Laminaria Digitata Extract

Citrus Sinensis (Sweet Orange) Peel Oil

Euterpe Oleracea (Acai Berry) Pulp Powder

Lycium Chinense (Goji) Fruit

Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme) Leaf

Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Powder


Now, let’s talk about preservatives in this hydrating face moisturizer:


As you might know, if there is water in a beauty product, preservatives have to be used to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold.


While they are necessary for water-based products, they are often a source of irritation and sensitization (an allergic reaction to the same product used over time).


The easiest route many manufacturers choose to go is to use phenoxyethanol, to which some people can develop an allergic reaction.  You can read more about it here.  Personally, I decided not to use any products made with it.


So with this said, the preservatives used in the Crunchi hydrating face moisturizer are Phenethyl alcohol and Ethylhexylglycerin.


Phenethyl Alcohol: is rated 1 with fair data in the Skin Deep database.  Phenethyl alcohol occurs naturally in the environment.  It is produced by microorganisms, plants, and animals.  Phenethyl Alcohol has been found in a number of natural essential oils, in food, spices, and tobacco, and in un-distilled alcoholic beverages, beers, and wines. (source)


The World Health Organization expresses no safety concerns using phenethyl alcohol as a food flavoring at current doses. (source)


It was found to be neither an irritant nor a sensitizer in human studies (source).


Ethylhexylglycerin: is rated 1 with limited data in the Skin Deep database, with irritation being listed as of high concern.  I like that it has no risks associated with cancer, endocrine disruption, reproductive toxicity, or sensitization (an allergic reaction to the same product used over time), which is a huge plus (source). It may increase the risk of irritation though.


In animal and human studies, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Panel found it to be a mild irritant in undiluted form and not a sensitizer at a concentration of 50%.


In the medical literature, there are a few cases described where people became allergic to ethylhexylglycerin.  Some of those people had unhealthy and sensitive skin, to begin with.  Because of its popularity, there have been more reported cases of allergic contact dermatitis.  As a result, in 2017, the American Society of Contact Dermatitis added it to its core allergen series along with sodium benzoate and lavender.  Sodium benzoate is another common preservative found in plant-based and natural beauty products, especially shampoos.


The American Society of Contact Dermatitis lists both ethylhexylglycerin and sodium benzoate as allergens at concentrations of 5%.


While these are some concerns, know that I have surveyed the preservatives most commonly used by skin care product formulators and have consulted with product formulators on preservatives (learn more about bad preservatives here).  Based on my knowledge of other choices for preservatives, I have added ethylhexylglycerin to my approved list of preservatives.


And again, I used the Crunchi hydrating face moisturizer for 3 months now and have not experienced any irritation.


And lastly, for those who like traditional white and fluffy creams, Crunchi Daylight Cream is white and fluffy, absorbent, and non-greasy.


This concludes my detailed review of the Crunchi Daylight Cream, which I have been enjoying, and I hope you will try it too.  I also use and like Crunchi Night Cream.


Where to buy


You can buy the Crunchi Daylight Cream here.


Please let me know in the comments how you liked it if you tried it already, whether you are thinking about trying it and why or why not.  And lastly, tell us in the comments what you are currently using.  I am always interested in trying new products but my standards are high, so I can’t promise I will actually try a product you recommend.


You can find the Crunchi Nighlight Cream here.  The safety of the ingredients is comparable.

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27 thoughts on “The Hydrating Face Moisturizer That Binds Water”

  1. I just started the Crunchi skincare day time and nighttime cream and I have noticed the hydration is phenomenal!!! If I hadn’t found your site I would have never known about there products! Truly grateful and thankful! I’m like you any other so called “natural/organic” line irritated my skin also. Crunchi is fantastic!

  2. There is one thing I do NOT like about the Crunchi Daylight Cream and that is the pump bottle it is packaged in. I had to dig all the cream out that I could and put it in a jar and it was not easy. The Night Cream came in a jar, thankfully. I do not like the pump because too much of the cream stays in the jar or in the tube and that to me is a waste since it is rather costly. I much prefer a jar since all of the cream is accessible. Since a little goes a long way, I do not need the pump to meter the amount. Other than the bottle I like the cream. It does not irritate and seems to nourish.

    1. I know what you mean, Marianna. I do not like that I have to scoop out the cream on the bottom. I will pass your feedback to Crunchi when I talk to them next. However, there is a reason for this madness. It has to do with the preservation system. Because the pump packaging, the ingredients are kept fresh longer without the use of harsh preservatives. The Night Cream ingredients are a little different and do well in the open jar. ~Irina

    2. I understand that! I recommend getting the every last drop spatula on Amazon! That will help you get every last drop of Crunchi goodness!!

  3. Hi Irina,
    Thank you so much for explaining the difference between hydration and miniaturization. I am looking forward to trying a cream that is more ‘traditional’ in feel and consistency and that is truly hydrating!

    Can you comment on whether the oils in this product are comedogenic???? Also, have you tried the night cream?

    1. Hi, Julia, comedogenicity is a controversial topic. I found only one scientific study dated 1988. As you might guess, a list of ingredients is limited there. The study also emphasizes that an ingredient comedogenicity should NOT be rated in isolation because of the amount and interactions between ingredients matter. In other words, even if an ingredient in a product is rated high on a comedogenicity scale, the overall comedogenicity of a product can be low depending on the amount of that ingredients and the other ingredients used in the product. There are different comedogenicity scales found on the Internet and sometimes they post contradictory ratings. None of them cite their sources of information. With this said, I have seen jojoba oil is rated 0 or 1 or 2 and sesame oil is 3 or 4 in most ratings. I also have an acne prone skin so before I started recommending Crunchi Daylight Cream I used it for 2 months to see if there are any adverse reactions. And there are none. By the way, sesame oil is down the list, which means that only a very small amount used. So I hope you will give it a try. Yes, I use and recommend the night cream as well. ~Irina

          1. I am! For example I love some of Annmarie products, while others, like the wild fruit serum, are too strong. Thanks again! I’ll give these creams a try!

  4. Jeanne Yacoubou, MS

    Hi Irina!

    Thanks for the education on the difference between hydrating and moisturizing.

    I prefer plain & simple shea butter that I warm slightly (so it won’t be hard & brittle) by putting the glass jar where I keep it in a larger bowl filled with hot water. No preservatives! And I never have to worry about it getting stuck in a pump or interacting with a plastic container and/or other chemicals in a formulated product.

    Have you ever tried just pure shea butter? It’s so rich that I don’t need a lot either.

    1. Thank you, Jeanne, for sharing your experience! I have tried pure shea butter, it was years ago. It was not hydrating at all. At first, it felt like it was moisturizing but in time my skin got drier than before. How long have been using shea butter? I know what you are saying about simple ingredients. And I completely agree. But sometimes I find that I can’t get away with simplicity. I am happy to report with my current beauty routine, my skin is better than ever. ~Irina

  5. What about the tocopherol in this product? You don’t mention your thoughts on it but the EWG lists it as having possible cancer causing effects.

    1. Hi, Colleen: yes, you are right, it looks like the EWG lists animal study that shows tumor formations at very high oral doses in animals, which would be a good argument for not taking vitamin E as a supplement. But I believe vitamin E is okay for a topical application in small doses. Hence, the EWG rates vitamin E at 1. Almost all skin care products and baby wipes have vitamin E. It is a very common ingredient because it has great skin conditioning benefits. Plus, it is not clear if the vitamin E they used for the animal study was contaminated with carcinogenic hydroquinone, which can happen is vitamin E is synthetically derived. Crunchi uses a natural version. But it depends on your comfort level. I am certainly not trying to convince to use skincare products. The safest way is not to use any skincare products at all but if you are using something conventional then you will definitely benefit from switching to Crunchi. So it also depends on where you are in your detoxifying journey. That is why I offer private consultations to come up with your personal plan. Please let me know if that helps. ~Irina

    1. Thank you for this, Tara!!! It has been on my mind for some time now to write a post with my current beauty routine and update it as I change my routine. You gave me the motivation to do it very soon. Stay tuned! ~Irina

        1. I saw some good reviews for this product, but I’m concerned about preservation (has rose water but doesn’t seem to have a preservative). I wonder if you’ve come across it? Alitura Naturals

  6. I have been using a very good organic product before crunchi but this daylight and night moisturizer surpassed the previous one I am using so I’m sticking with crunchi.

  7. Hi Irina,

    Thank you for this post, I am currently looking for a good hydrating moisturizer to compliment my current skincare routine and that won’t clog my pores or make me break out. Been experiencing some dry patches on my cheeks. Will definitely look into this cream. Looking forward to your current skincare regime (that’s if I didn’t miss it already, which in my case is very possible) lol… PS: What are your thoughts on the Mad Hippie skincare range? Sending lots of love xoxo

  8. Hi Irina!
    I know this post was primarily about Crunchi’s Daylight Cream, but I’m curious if you have any hesitations about the lavender oil used in the Nightlight Cream (or any other product, for that matter, like Earth Mama’s Diaper Balm ). I know lavender oil (alongside tea tree oil) has been called a possible hormone disruptor in a study a while back, and the information keeps circulating. I don’t stand firmly on either side of the debate at this point, but I’m wondering what your take is. Thank you!

  9. Hi! I know this is an older post but I’m wondering about the presence of Tocopherol (Vitamin E) in the product. On the EWG Skin Deep website I noticed that this ingredient is connected with the contaminant “hydroquinone.” How can you be sure that in using this product, the contaminant hydroquinone is not being released, especially since final products are not required to be tested in the US? Thanks so much if you see this! 🙂

    1. Hi, Libybet: The EWG also rates tocopherol 1 with fair data. Yes, generally speaking, contamination with hydroquinone is possible. But I also feel that the line has to be drawn somewhere. I already do unprecedentedly “deep” research. I believe that if we continue going deeper we end being stressed and overwhelmed and the decision has to be made: either we live in a constant fear or stop using cosmetic products altogether. Thank you for asking though ~Irina

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