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Why Colloidal Oatmeal Is a Must-Have Skincare Ingredient

By Kiehl’s Education Team

Colloidal oatmeal, also known as Avena sativa, is prized in skincare formulations for its soothing, softening and nourishing powers. Colloidal oatmeal is derived from the oat kernel, and is usually ground into a fine, water-soluble powder. It is often used to soothe certain skin conditions and skin irritations as it is very calming for all skin types. It can be combined with other skin ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin to calm and nourish. 

What Does Colloidal Oatmeal Do for Your Skin?

Colloidal oatmeal is rich in skin-friendly nutrients, including amino acids, antioxidants, and fatty acids. These properties make colloidal oatmeal a useful ingredient in topical skincare formulations.


Oatmeal Benefit #1

Colloidal Oatmeal Is an Effective Skin Moisturiser

One of the best-known benefits of colloidal oatmeal for skin is its ability to help hydrate and nourish skin thanks to its impressive humectant (ability to hold water) properties. Studies show that skincare products containing oatmeal can help with hydrating skin, reducing skin dryness and associated symptoms (such as itching, flaky skin and tightness). It's a very effective ingredient for those with sensitive skin, irritated skin or a compromised skin barrier. This is especially true of colloidal oatmeal, which, when applied topically, forms an occlusive barrier on the skin, helping to protect and prevent excessive water loss. Colloidal oatmeal is also found in our Ultra Facial Advanced Repair Barrier Cream and is known to relieve redness, dryness, and discomfort and hydrate skin up to 10 layers deep. 

Oatmeal Benefit #2

Colloidal Oatmeal Can Help Soothe Skin

Colloidal oatmeal helps to support the skin’s natural moisture barrier and maintain hydration. The husks of colloidal oatmeal provide exfoliating properties that help with smoothing skin and removing dead surface skin cells. If you’re looking to soothe and support your skin’s barrier, look to include formulas with colloidal oatmeal in your skincare routine. 


At Kiehl's, we understand the power of active ingredients and we ensure all of our formulas are balanced and effective. A oatmeal is key ingredient in our  Ultimate Man Body Scrub Soap  and our  Ultra Facial Advanced Repair Barrier Cream.

"Ultimate Man" Body Scrub Soap

Oat bran and oat kernel meal both star in our "Ultimate Man" Body Scrub Soap, which also contains hydrating Glycerin. The exfoliating bar soap thoroughly cleanses the skin while helping to slough away dead skin cells, leaving the skin feeling energized and smooth. When used regularly, it also helps alleviate roughness on tough areas like the knees, elbows, and heels.

Ultra Facial Advanced Repair Barrier Cream

Our Ultra Facial Advanced Repair Barrier Cream is an intensive barrier cream with colloidal oatmeal that provides instant repair and relief for dry and sensitive skin up to 10 surface skin layers deep. Formulated with colloidal oatmeal and Beta-Glucan, this potent formula is equipped with our unique Advanced Barrier Technology that mimics skin’s lipid structure to help support the moisture barrier and visibly reduce redness caused by dryness. Clinically tested, our barrier cream with colloidal oatmeal helps to transform dry, to very dry skin that can be caused by various types of external and internal aggressors.


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