by CLEF Skincare on Sep 15, 2020



Trehalose is a naturally occurring sugar most commonly found in dried shiitake mushroom and seaweed. Also known as ‘Resurrection Sugar’, it restores plants and fungi to their original states upon rehydration, in addition to helping them withstand extreme conditions. Trehalose forms a protective layer that stops cells from falling apart when they start to dehydrate, and allows them to resume their shape as soon as they come into contact with water.

When used in skincare, this naturally-derived, highly stable ingredient is one of the most efficient skin hydrating ingredients on the planet! It functions as a humectant that draws moisture from the environment to keep skin cells well-hydrated, and keeps the complexion looking plump and dewy. 

In fact, studies have found that trehalose is superior to hyaluronic acid when it comes to moisture replenishment. However, that doesn’t mean hyaluronic acid doesn’t have its benefits. In fact, when used together with trehalose, the two ingredients appear to synergise. Hyaluronic acid binds water, while trehalose prevents cellular dehydration. 

Our Hydrating Cleansing Gel, which is formulated with trehalose, also contains hyaluronic acid for a more holistic approach to hydration. Together, this combination works better than the individual ingredients to supply your skin with the moisture it needs. Cleansers are a great way for you to introduce this ingredient into your everyday skincare routine since you’ll be able to immediately feel its moisturising powers (and immediately fall in love with it!). Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of trehalose.


  1.   It helps skin retain moisture and prevent dryness

Trehalose moisturizes the skin by mimicking the composition of the Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF) found within the skin’s epidermis. The NMF is an expansive group of substances that consists of sugars, salts, amino acids, peptides, PCA, lactates, and urea. These substances work together to keep the skin’s surface supple and hydrated.

As we age, the NMF can become depleted. Constant exposure to drying ingredients like cleansing agents and denatured alcohol can also deplete the NMF. The result is skin that is dry, flaky, and feels tight. Apart from accelerating the signs of aging, dry skin can also lead to rebound sebum production, leaving your skin even oilier than before (and can also lead to breakouts). Hydration is key in keeping your skin youthful and clear.


  1.   It protects the skin

Trehalose forms special structures above cell membranes that protects molecular structures from being damaged or destroyed. When trehalose comes into contact with water, it creates a more crystalline formation with neighboring water molecules than that created between water molecules and other compounds. It also modifies the dynamic properties of water, forming a unique structure which makes it better equipped at protecting biological structures. 

The natural protective functions of trehalose help to prevent skin and hair damage caused by exposure to harsh environmental factors like UV radiation, pollution, smoke, and irritants. Additionally, trehalose protects collagen-producing cells from dehydration. These properties make trehalose an ideal ingredient to include in formulations for sensitive skin since excessive exposure to skin-damaging environmental factors—like sun, wind, and extreme temperatures—is a leading cause of sensitive skin.


  1.   It’s an effective antioxidant

Trehalose also has antioxidative properties, which means it neutralizes free radicals and protects the skin against damage caused by pollution, UV light, or infrared radiation. Essentially, it protects overall skin integrity by reducing signs of premature aging caused by oxidation. Sun damage can lead to the formation of age spots, fine lines, and wrinkles. Introducing antioxidants like trehalose into your skincare routine is a great way to slow down signs of aging. Pair it with other anti-aging wonders (hint: you should try our best-selling Anti-Aging Copper Peptide Mask) and you’re all set! 


Get your moisturizer in a cleanser now with CLEF Skincare!