Does Glossier Skincare Have Fragrance?

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Glossier Skincare comprises a number of products like moisturizers, serums, oils, face wash, creams, sunscreen, and lip balm, and they all carry fragrance. The brand has not listed any of its skincare products as fragrance-free.

Fragrance ingredients in Glossier Skincare

Glossier Skincare products are made with a combination of natural and chemical ingredients. Therefore, the fragrance of the products is a blend of the scents of these ingredients. Further, most products also contain fragrance chemicals that could be masking the aroma of all other ingredients.

The ingredients listed as flavor or aroma for products like Balm Dotcom are usually elaborate concoctions of numerous chemicals that are synthetically prepared or extracted from natural sources. This mixture is a trade secret – hence, its composition is not disclosed.

For products like Priming Moisturizer, Cleanser Concentrate, Moisturizing Moon Mask, and Invisible Shield, Glossier has provided names of some fragrance chemicals it has used.

The fragrance chemicals used in Glossier skincare products include BHT, Avobenzone, Homosalate, Octisalate, Sodium Benzoate, Linalool, Citronellol, Geraniol, Menthol, Limonene, and Benzyl Benzoate.

Are the fragrance ingredients in Glossier Skincare safe?

Most of the cosmetic products we use in our daily lives contain fragrances. Not all of these products and fragrances are regulated by the US FDA or relevant laws in other countries. The laws also do not require manufacturers to furnish the list of chemicals they use in their fragrances.

The term flavor and aroma used in the product listing of Glossier Skincare refer to the brand’s secretive fragrance recipe. Such blends termed as flavor, aroma, or fragrance in product listings are known to contain a plethora of chemical ingredients – sometimes 50-100 and sometimes even 2,000.

Certain components in these fragrance formulations can lead to allergies and sensitivities such as contact dermatitis, skin irritation, hives, blisters, and itching as they carry potential allergens. They can also cause respiratory problems like nasal congestion, throat irritation, breathing difficulties, and asthma. Other symptoms like dizziness, brain fogging, migraine, vomiting, and nausea are also known to occur.

Additionally, fragrance chemicals also have the potential to cause hormonal imbalance and endocrine disruption. As these chemicals contain greenhouse gases, they are also harmful to the environment. They lead to ecotoxicity by polluting wastewater systems, waterways, and the air that we breathe.

Through ingredient listing provided by Glossier for products like sunscreen, moisturizers, and face masks, we know that some specific chemicals are used as part of fragrance ingredients. Let us check how they can affect you.


Butylated Hydroxytoluene is a butylated compound with extreme toxicity. Among its many side effects are metabolic stress, endocrine disruption, contact dermatitis, skin allergies, liver toxicity, and carcinogen.


This chemical is considered a potential carcinogen. Further, its application on the skin can increase sensitization and result in acne.


It is easily absorbed by the skin – therefore, results in endocrine disruption, skin breakouts and irritation, and higher penetration of chemicals into the body.


It is known to clog pores on the skin. Consequentially, it can result in breakouts, acne, rashes, and sensitivity.

Sodium Benzoate

The well-established side effect of the chemical is its potential to cause inflammation, which could even lead to cancer. Absorption of the chemical through the skin could result in headaches, nausea, and fatigue.


While this has anti-inflammatory properties, it also has the capacity to cause allergies, eczema, redness, and irritation.


It can cause skin irritation if you have sensitive skin. When inhaled, its fumes can cause wheezing, throat irritation, and breathing difficulties.


It is extremely harmful to the skin as it can cause allergies and irritation. If it comes in contact with your eyes, it can cause serious damage. Further, the chemical is highly toxic to aquatic life.


It can cause pain and swelling of the skin. If you have a sensitive respiratory system, its fumes could cause nasal irritation, burning, and nausea.


It quickly oxidizes when exposed to air. Therefore, it can result in contact dermatitis, skin sensitivity, breakouts, drying of the skin, and itching.

Benzyl Benzoate

The chemical is dangerous for the skin. It has the potential to cause blisters, redness, scaling, and irritation.

Is it better to avoid Glossier Skincare products with fragrances?

While the fragrance chemicals used in Glossier Skincare have several adverse effects, not everyone who uses them will face all the potential risks. You could experience mild or severe side effects depending on the sensitivity of your skin and respiratory system.

Further, when used in moderation, the threats the chemicals pose would be weak. Additionally, make sure to take a look at the chemical composition of the product before adding them to your cart. This way, you will be saving yourself and the environment from the adversities of using fragrance chemicals.


Anand Srinivasan
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