Squalane Oil’s Big Beauty Benefits (and Our Top Picks)

A dreamy ingredient for your skincare routine.

squalane oil's big beauty benefits
Credit: iStock/jacoblund

*Affiliate disclosure. 

It seems like there’s a new rock star ingredient every week: oils, serums, masks and moisturizers all promising to turn back time, leave us feeling refreshed, and plump our skin to pure perfection. 

So, why should our ears perk at the buzz surrounding squalane? As it turns out, squalane, also known as squalane oil, can help balance the skin’s natural oils, lock in moisture, deliver anti-bacterial properties and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

Although it is an oil, squalane moisturizes effectively without leaving behind greasy residue and clogged pores. It occurs naturally in the human body but decreases in production as early as your late twenties, so sustainable squalane is something your skin intuitively knows how to absorb and utilize.

Squalane occurs naturally not only in the skin’s lipid barrier but also in olives, sugar cane and shark liver. We nixed the last option for ethical reasons and compiled a list of some of the best olive and sugar cane sourced squalane products below. 

The squalane sourced from olives and sugar cane is a stable, non-comedogenic oil that resembles the skin’s sebum closely so it can go to work balancing oil production and stabilizing highly sensitive skin. 

Although face-oil and oil-cleanser popularity is booming, many oils are comedogenic and therefore agitate the very issues they were intended to sooth – redness, inflammation, acne and congested pores. 

Squalane, on the other hand, is incredibly gentle, ideal for all skin types and protects your skin’s moisture barrier, making it a dream ingredient for those with aging, damaged or chronically dehydrated skin.

We sat down with Mollie Jensen, Senior Sustainability & Compliance Manager team from Biossance to ask some basic questions about squalane and how they use it in their product line.

Organic Authority: What is Squalane?

Mollie Jensen: The human body produces its own version of squalane in the form of squalene, which is part of the skin’s protective moisture barrier. Squalane is an emollient ingredient that deeply moisturizes, helps prevent moisture loss and increases a soft, supple feel.

OA: What benefits does Squalane have on the skin? Does it help with acne? Wrinkles?

MJ: It fortifies the moisture barrier to help strengthen and calm irritation in the skin. It also helps smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and because it’s non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores), it replenishes skin that’s been dehydrated by harsh blemish products.

OA: What makes Squalane so special?

MJ: Because it is from squalene, which is found naturally in the moisture barrier, your skin recognizes it and knows what to do with it.

OA: Where do you source your Squalane from?

MJ: At Biossance, we’ve found a way to create squalane through biotechnology from renewable sugarcane. The end result is exceptionally stable, deeply moisturizing and highly sustainable squalane.

Here Are Some of Our Favorite Squalane Products, from Biossance and Elsewhere:

Biossance 100% Squalane Oil $32

Made from renewable sugar cane, this weightless face oil reduces inflammation and redness, locks in the skin’s moisture and reduces the appearance of fine lines. Fragrance-free, paraben-free, cruelty-free and vegan.

Indie Lee Squalane Facial Oil $34

This olive-derived, highly-absorbable squalane face oil improves elasticity, balances the skin’s natural oils and hydrates. Great for all complexions, this formula is made from 100% pure squalane and contains no parabens, sulfates or mineral oil. Certified cruelty-free and vegan-friendly.

The Inky List Squalane Oil $11.99

This lightweight face oil is made from 100% plant-derived squalane. Non-greasy and ultra-hydrating, this formula is suitable for both oily and dry skin as it is both moisturizing and oil-controlling. Made without parabens, sulfates and mineral oil, this product is vegan and cruelty-free.

BYBI Beauty Bakuchiol In Olive Squalane Booster $17

This all-natural nighttime facial serum is the perfect booster serum to add to your existing moisturizer or cream. It combines moisturizing olive squalane with bakuchiol, a natural alternative to retinol that improves texture without harsh drying or irritation. Alcohol-free, cruelty-free and vegan.

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