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Panthenol for Skin & Hair - Uses & Benefits
Panthenol for Skin & Hair - Uses & Benefits


Panthenol for Skin & Hair - Uses & Benefits


Panthenol is the provitamin or precursor of vitamin B5, which is essential for healthy skin and hair. Thanks to its moisturising properties, panthenol is commonly found in a variety of skincare and cosmetic products.

In addition to its excellent hydrating properties, panthenol also has softening, soothing, and anti-irritant benefits. Topical products containing panthenol are a good option for managing skin conditions such as eczema. Panthenol can also be found in haircare products to help improve the texture, shine, and strength of hair.

Here, we’ll cover what panthenol is, the potential benefits of panthenol, and how to include panthenol in your skin and hair care routine.

In this guide:

What is panthenol?

Panthenol is the provitamin or precursor of vitamin B5. When you put panthenol on your skin, it converts into vitamin B5, which is then absorbed into your skin. Vitamin B5 is essential for healthy skin and hair. It occurs organically and can also be produced from both plants and animal sources. The way that panthenol reacts with skin and hair makes it a common ingredient in moisturisers, cleansers, haircare products, and even baby products.

What are the benefits of panthenol for hair and skin?

When applied to the skin, panthenol is converted into vitamin B5. This can help promote improved appearance for both skin and hair.

Panthenol is a great ingredient for skin care products, shampoos, and conditioners as it binds and holds water in the skin and hair. Hydration helps to improve the plumpness and visible elasticity of the skin, giving it a dewy appearance. It also adds shine to the hair.

Benefits of panthenol for hair

  • It can make hair look shinier and feel ‘fuller to the touch.
  • It can help moisturise and ‘nourish’ hair, to prevent it going dry.

Benefits of panthenol for skin

  • It can help moisturise the skin, helping it to feel smoother and look plump and dewy.
  • By holding moisture in the skin and preventing water loss, it helps maintain a strong, healthy skin barrier.
  • It can help soothe dry, damaged, and irritated skin.

Common panthenol products

Panthenol is found in many products for different parts of the body. These include:

  • Skincare products: Creams and lotions, for moisturisation, maintenance of skin barrier, and even soothing of dry, irritated skin.
  • Hair care products: Shampoos, conditioners, as well as detangling sprays, hairsprays, and mousses etc for shine and strength.
  • Cosmetics: Lipsticks, foundation, and mascara for extra moisturisation.
  • Nail products: Hand and nail creams, cuticle oils, etc. Since nails are made from keratin, like hair, panthenol can add shine and strength to nails.

How to use panthenol in your skin and hair care routine

Here are some tips on how to include panthenol in your skin and hair care routine:

  • For hydrating creams, lotions, and sprays, make sure these products have been smoothed into the skin and avoid rubbing them to help prevent blocking follicles.
  • When using panthenol for its moisturising properties and to help your skin feel smooth and soft, you can apply it as often as you need. This will help improve your skin barrier function and skin hydration.
  • Panthenol sprays can be a great option for quickly applying moisturisers without the need to rub in and which don’t leave a greasy feeling. Just make sure to apply plenty for good coverage and avoid breathing the product in.
  • As panthenol products include everything from face moisturisers to serums, cleaners to toners, it’s worth experimenting to find the ones that work best for you and the best combination for your needs. For example, you can use NEUTROGENA® Clear & Defend+ Gel Moisturiser with Niacinamide & Panthenol daily for moisturising and NEUTROGENA® Clear & Defend+ Liquid Exfoliant with AHA + Panthenol weekly to help remove excess oil and dead skin that can lead to blemishes.

Panthenol FAQs

Is panthenol safe?

Panthenol is considered to be safe for use in topical skincare products and cosmetics, with a very low risk of skin irritation. That said, it’s important to always read the directions for use before applying any product.

Is panthenol good for rosacea and eczema?

Panthenol is a moisturising and soothing ingredient, as well as a skin protectant. This means that it can be beneficial in the management of dry, irritable skin conditions, such as eczema and rosacea. Applying skin care products containing panthenol, especially during colder weather, can reduce the chance of the skin drying out further and exacerbating such skin conditions.

What are the main panthenol skin benefits?

When you apply panthenol to the skin, it’s converted to vitamin B5 and absorbed. This helps to improve hydration, as well as being beneficial to its elasticity and appearance. In addition, its soothing properties mean it can help reduce skin irritation.