Skip to main content

Betaine. The magic skincare ingredient

What is Betaine?

Betaine is a naturally derived ingredient that has been used for decades in skin and hair care products, food and drink, and personal care applications. It improves hydration levels, protects skin’s natural barrier function, helps improve hair strength and silkiness to create beautiful-looking hair, and is known to reduce the feeling of dryness while enhancing the texture of formulations.

Betaine is a natural substance that can be found in many high-quality foods. Some of the best sources include wheat bran, wheat germ, spinach, beets, microbes and invertebrates. It’s typically called trimethylglycine after its chemical structure.

There are a number of essential biological functions that betaine is involved in, and it’s mainly obtained through your diet. However, you can also synthesize betaine from choline and glycine. These biological processes include healthy liver function and detoxification, as well as cellular functioning throughout the body. Betaine is essential to the processing of fats within cells, and protects them from osmotic stress in the liver, kidneys, brain, and other organs.

Skin benefits from betaine include hydration, anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, and soothing. It’s also a non-irritating ingredient which means that it’s safe to use on sensitive skin.

What are the benefits of Betaine for the skin?

Bataine is an under-the-radar ingredient in skincare, but it has a lot to offer. It offers hydration, anti-aging, and protects the skin from irritation. It is safe for most skin types and naturally non-irritating.


Betaine is an amino acid that has been shown to increase skin hydration and anti-wrinkle effects. Betaine does this by mediating the osmosis process. Osmosis is what regulates water balance within the body— if there’s a dehydrated area, osmosis will flow water into it to make sure that both areas have a balanced amount of water. This property of betaine helps it to attract moisture and maintain cell water balance.

Hydrating your skin is just as important as eating right and getting regular exercise. When the skin is dehydrated, it’s more prone to damage and infection. It will also appear dull, which can really affect all of your levels of self-confidence.

Research has found that betaine can also improve the integrity of tight junctions. Tight junctions are protein complexes that prevent leakage of solutes and water between cells. For example, tight junctions prevent allergens from penetrating skin tissue. Additionally, tight junctions aid in preventing water loss through the skin. To achieve this result, more hydration is needed on the skin due to increased water lost by skin dehydration. As a result, betaine protects the skin from harmful substances and increases its hydration status.

One study found that the water retention capability of betaine makes it an ideal ingredient for hair care products. The average increase in water retention into the hair treated with betaine was 40%, whereas the hair treated with glycerol only increased by 6%. Furthermore, when betaine is added to hair conditioners, it has been shown to improve the ease of wet/dry combing. Overall, the addition of betaine to hair care products gives the hair more strength and hydration. It’s also known to make the hair shiny and more elastic.


A few studies have suggested that betaine may provide anti-aging benefits, namely through its ability to protect the skin from free radical damage. Studies have found that it is the result of a process called oxidative stress and come about in response to environmental stress, such as UV damage. Oxidative stress is linked to aging and can occur in response to environmental stress factors, such as UV exposure.


Betaine can help soothe inflamed and sensitized skin, which is useful for those with sensitive skin. This ingredient is less irritating than water, helping to keep the skin’s protective barrier intact. With a healthy skin barrier, you’re better protected against irritants and harmful substances that may cause sensitivities.


Betaine is a skin and haircare ingredient that has many properties. It functions as a texture enhancer, which means that it helps to improve the texture of products without causing tackiness. When added to formulations with other ingredients, betaine can increase thickening capabilities (by 20%). Betaine also helps ease the irritation potential of surfactants or cleaning agents. These properties for shampoos make it excellent for those who need delicate products with a low level of harsh ingredients, like an easy-rinse baby shampoo made with a low concentration of surfactants.

Our recommended product containing Betaine:

Anti-Pollution Drops – 30ml/1oz