HARTMANN in South Africa
Incontinence > Tips for treatment and care > Gentle and thorough cleansing of elderly skin

Alcohol in skin care products

Ethanol based products dehydrate the skin. Therfore skin care products containing panthenol should be used, which increase the moisture content of skin.

The German nursing standard for the prevention of decubitus ulcers specifies that no alcohol-based cleansing products should be used because alcohol dehydrates the skin. This particularly applies to elderly skin because it is already thinner and dryer and tends to become flaky. More than half of people older than 60 complain of chronic skin itching problems. Therefore, we recommend:

Use sensitive skin care products

Many cleansing products contain panthenol, also called dexpanthenol. In the body panthenol is converted into pantothenic acid. This “queen of skin vitamins” helps bind water in the skin and increase moisture content. However, chemically speaking, it is alcohol. But alcohol is also known as ethanol and accordingly defined in the German nursing standard. D-Panthenol can therefore be used without any problems. Cetyl alcohol is also not really an "alcohol”. Used in care products, it makes the skin soft and supple.

Sensitive skin cleansers contain moisturizing ingredients

When choosing cleansing products, those which cleanse the skin gently and thoroughly and also increase the moisture content of the skin (e.g. Menalind® professional) should be considered.

To sum up: modern cosmetic products tailored to the needs of elderly skin provide gentle cleansing and optimal care!