What is Gluten-Free MakeUp?

Gluten-free makeup is among the many growing topics in 2023 and many people find themselves asking, what is gluten-free makeup and is it necessary? 

What is Gluten-Free Makeup?

Gluten-free makeup is cosmetics made without gluten, or gluten byproducts, in them.

Why Does it Matter?

Cosmetics that contain gluten are sometimes produced with oils, extracts, and flours derived from wheat, barley, and rye. For those that have gluten intolerance's or Celiac disease, this is of great growing interest due to the many effects gluten can have on the immune system and damage to the digestive tract. There is much research to be done on the subject of gluten based products and their contributions to gluten based reactions.

Can Gluten be absorbed into the skin?

No, gluten cannot be absorbed through the skin.

However, products that do contain gluten can potentially be ingested through means of:

  • Lip Products: Experts believe that the average consumer, ingests anywhere from 6-9 LBS of lipstick in their lifetime. This is due to the duration of time one is wearing a lip product, while moving their lips such as talking, eating, drinking, lip smacking, kissing, etc.
  • Powders: Cosmetic products such as: eye-shadows, loose pigments, powders, and blushes are often inhaled upon application or absorbed through the nose and eyes.
  • Eye Products: Cosmetic products such as eyeliners and mascaras can often leave traces in the eye upon application or normal wear throughout the day.

Why Would Makeup Contain Gluten?

Gluten in makeup is more common than you think, but we don't always look a the back of a label...let alone understand the complex meaning of those ingredients. Here are some common uses for why they may contain gluten:

  • Lip Products: Lip Products often contain gluten substances to act as stabilizers for the formula, or to nourish the lips. These are often seen as wheat germ or oat oil.
  • Mascaras: A lot of mascaras have vitamin E which is added to promote lash growth and health. Although vitamin E is typically sourced from almonds (which is gluten-free) wheat germ can also be used as an alternative source and should specified, but often isn't.
  • Powders: Powders often contain avena sativa (oat) kernel flour in makeup products as a bulking agent and as an absorbent. The texture of the ground kernels makes it ideal in many products.

What Should I Do If I Am Concerned?

If you are among the growing community of those concerned of gluten ingredients in cosmetics, here are a few steps you can take to be proactive:

  • Research the brand: Doing your research is important to knowing the companies objectives and where they stand on growing issues.
  • Look at the ingredients: Although there are many gluten containing ingredients, some of the common ingredients are: Avena Sativa (Oat), Triticum Vulgare, Dextrin, Maltodextrin, Hydrolyzed Barley Protein, and Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein.
  • Wash your hands: If you are unsure whether or not your cosmetics contain gluten and want to be cautious, wash your hands. Cross-contamination occurs by simple measures such as rubbing your eyes, touching your mouth, etc. and can potentially be a means to exposure.


Better Beauty Bae is proud to be

Back to blog