Is Panthenol in skincare a harmful ingredient?

Today's spot light ingredient is Panthenol.

Never heard of it?

Have you head of “Pantene Pro-V”? Yes? Well, Panthenol is the Pro-V💪

Pro-V is Pro-Vitamin B5 or...yep, panthenol. ProV is a moisturizer and humectant (meaning it attracts and retains moisture). When skin care products containing panthenol penetrate the skin, the provitamin is converted to Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) and its this vitamin which improves hydration, reduces itching and inflammation of the skin and accelerates epidermal wounds' rate of healing. That means in short, reducing the redness & swelling of breakouts and in the longer term reducing the severity of any scaring.

It doesn't stop there either. As a moisturising ingredient, it stabilises the skin's barrier function, reducing the amount of water lost through the skin. This, in turn, improves skin texture and elasticity which helps reduce the severity of acne scaring.


But wait! A study from 2006 tested pantothenic acid on 25 women with oily skin and found that it significantly reduced their sebum levels. Wow, but there's more - a 2014 study showed suppressed growth of pathogenic skin bacteria using panthenol. Two big mechanisms for acne breakouts. "I've heard enough, slather me up!" you shout.


Hold your horses sunshine, nothings without negatives.


Prolonged and continuous use of products containing high quantities of Panthenol may ironically, turn out to be detrimental to skin health. For example, cases of skin rash and irritation have been reported among massive users.


As always YMMV, try products with panthenol in, keep a diary and see how you go.


Sources: The effects of a daily facial lotion containing vitamins B3 and E and provitamin B5 on the facial skin of Indian women: a randomized, double-blind trial. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2010;76(1):20-6. Jerajani HR, Mizoguchi H, Li J, Whittenbarger DJ, Marmor MJ. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20061726