Panthenol

AKA: Provitamin B5
A popular soothing and moisturizing derivative of vitamin B5. Panthenol is particularly beneficial for dry, flaking, burned, or damaged skin. It is used to alleviate the symptoms of a rash, dermatitis, eczema, chapped lips, and sunburn.
Also-Known-As:
Provitamin B5
All functions
Origin
Panthenol

Overview

Panthenol, or dexpanthenol, is a commonly known soothing and moisturizing ingredient used in after-sun lotions (which help with the healing of sunburned skin).

But there is more to panthenol than just being a sunburn treatment, so let’s delve into it.

Dexpanthenol is a stable alcohol derived from vitamin B5, or pantothenic acid. Unlike pantothenic acid, dexpanthenol is well absorbed by the skin and has been used in topical preparations since the 1940s.

When applied to the skin, panthenol rapidly penetrates the deeper layers and transforms into pantothenic acid, which is an important part of Coenzyme A. Coenzyme A starts the synthesis of fatty acids and sphingolipids, which are important for the skin’s lipid barrier.

It has been shown in clinical studies that panthenol helps to restore the barrier function of the skin and has humectant moisturizing effects. It reduces transepidermal water loss and increases hydration in the skin by attracting water.

In addition to all of this, it also has wound healing properties which come from its ability to increase the speed at which the tiny ‘building blocks’ of our skin move towards the damaged area.

Panthenol is a wonderfully beneficial ingredient for any type of skin, but particularly for dry, flaking, burned, or damaged skin. It is used to alleviate the symptoms of rashes, dermatitis, eczema, chapped lips, and sunburn.

It is definitely a good idea to make sure that this ingredient is included in your skincare products, especially in the cold winter season.

Science

1
Stettler, H., et al. (2017). A new topical panthenol-containing emollient: Results from two randomized controlled studies assessing its skin moisturization and barrier restoration potential, and the effect on skin microflora. The Journal of dermatological treatment, 28(2), 173–180.
2
Proksch, E., de Bony, R., Trapp, S., & Boudon, S. (2017). Topical use of dexpanthenol: a 70th anniversary article. The Journal of dermatological treatment, 28(8), 766–773.