A hundred names for the same ingredient

Jan 4, 2020 · 2 min read

We admit we might be exaggerating just a little. But our takeaway is that even though skincare manufacturers are supposed to stick to INCI (International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients) naming protocol for their ingredient lists, they simply don’t.

Brands are supposed to consistently apply the INCI protocol when publishing their product ingredient lists.

Is it just a lack of understanding of the rules? We think not.

Is there an actual penalty for not adhering to the protocol? Don’t think so.

It is much easier for brands to market their products as unique and exclusive if they list ingredients in non-standard ways. Consumers can’t compare ingredient lists easily in their heads and using different names for the same ingredient makes it even more difficult. Confusing the average customer is, unfortunately, the goal. So, one of the first challenges we had when we started developing Skincare Compare was standardizing the name of ingredients across the board. For this, we had to create our own Skinskool ingredient nomenclature that cross-references both INCI and other naming conventions we’ve uncovered. We started with over different 13,000 ingredient names in our database that later would be narrowed down to approximately 5000 unique ingredients. Keep in mind the number of ingredients has now grown as we add more and more new products into the system. At last count, we had 7360 unique ingredients in the database.

Want to find your own skincare dupes? Find the best affordable skincare dupes using Skincare Compare. If you’d like to keep up to date on all the latest dupe finds we discover, be sure to request to join our private Facebook group Dupe Talk.

You can learn more about how Skincare Compare takes ingredient order into account here.

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