Silver in cosmetics is not an attempt to surprise by making formulas precious. This ingredient has a lot of useful properties, but not without reservations

The use of silver in cosmetics is not just another innovation, as it might seem. In fact, this metal has been known for centuries for its bactericidal and anti-inflammatory properties. At the end of the 19th century, the antiseptic effect of silver was scientifically proven, after which silver nitrate began to be used for medical purposes - for disinfection. Soon, this substance was also used in the cosmetic industry, where they could not help but appreciate its antimicrobial effect.What is silver cosmetics today and are they always extremely useful products? We tell.

Colloidal silver in cosmetics: what is it?

Colloidal silver is a solution with very small silver particles (their size does not exceed 1 nm), which, together with stabilizing components, is also used in cosmetic formulations. The influence of silver on the microflora of the skin has a number of positive effects.

  • The disinfecting properties of silver are what make such cosmetics prevent the reproduction and spread of pathogenic bacteria.

  • Silver soothes the skin, relieving inflammation and redness. It is especially effective in the fight against acne.

  • " Silver" cosmetics provides the skin with protection from external factors that provoke inflammation.

  • Silver stimulates skin regeneration and its active healing and restoration, especially if there are minor damages and wounds on its surface.

  • Sun protection properties are another plus of cosmetics with silver in the composition. It helps protect the skin from photoaging.

Silver also acts as a preservative in formulas, extending their shelf life.

Sources of silver in cosmetics

Silver can be present in cosmetics in its pure form - in the form of a powder that has been purified using a special technology. But more common:

  • silver nitrate (it is an inorganic s alt with good solubility);

  • colloidal silver (a solution with silver nanoparticles);

  • silver citrate (an organic soluble ingredient, used primarily as a natural preservative).

Benefits and harms of silver citrate

Silver citrate is considered one of the safest forms of this metal to add to cosmetics. At the same time, along with the advantages, it also has several disadvantages.


  1. Natural

    Unlike many other ingredients that are added to cosmetics as a preservative, this one is natural: it is obtained from citric acid and silver.

  2. High activity

    Silver citrate (as well as other forms of silver in cosmetics) is effective even in small amounts. Already at a concentration of 0.1%, it helps in the fight against bacteria; its action, by the way, affects only harmful microorganisms, while the natural, necessary and beneficial microflora of the skin remains intact.

  3. Powerful antiseptic properties

    This component quickly neutralizes potential pests, preventing them from multiplying and spreading. The bactericidal properties of silver citrate are what makes it so popular in the cosmetics industry.

  4. Improve skin quality

    This effect is closely related to the ability of silver citrate to inhibit the activity of harmful bacteria. Reducing inflammation, soothing the skin, the substance evens out and makes it smoother, eliminating visible imperfections.

If skin problems are very noticeable, then the effect of products with silver in the composition can be supplemented with camouflage makeup. We talked about it in this video.


Cosmetics with silver is not recommended to be used on an ongoing basis: the fact is that silver ions can accumulate in tissues without participating in its metabolic processes.If a total of 1 gram of silver accumulates in the body, a disease called "argyrosis" can develop, in which the skin becomes gray-blue in color.

True, such a possibility exists only with uncontrolled intake of drugs with silver inside. And silver citrate, unlike the more toxic silver nitrate, does not create risks in this sense. It is added to cosmetics only in an acceptable, and therefore safe dosage. Thus, "silver" means are best used for a short period of time when you need to solve a specific problem - for example, get rid of rashes on the face.

What facial cosmetics contain colloidal silver concentrate?

Different forms of silver are present in most products that are somehow associated with cleansing: this process includes the fight against bacteria. We are talking about cosmetics for the body (for example, for the skin of the legs and feet), deodorants, toothpastes, shampoos.

As for facial cosmetics, here silver is used primarily in products for problem skin and in formulas for getting rid of acne: these are creams, serums, lotions, tonics, cleansers.

Silver can also be present in decorative cosmetics - for example, in BB creams that fight skin imperfections.

Cosmetics with silver: recommendations and contraindications

Useful properties of silver can be useful in several cases at once.

  1. Problem skin prone to breakouts

    Antibacterial properties of cosmetics with silver will help girls with this type of skin to relieve irritation, reduce redness, get rid of acne and prevent the appearance of new imperfections.

  2. Mature skin

    In this case, it is important that cosmetics with silver helps to restore the skin and enhances its protective mechanisms - this helps it to better withstand harmful external influences and thus maintain youth and beauty.

As for contraindications, cosmetics with silver should be avoided only by those who are allergic to this component. It is worth remembering the ability of silver to accumulate in the body and not to abuse such cosmetics.

How is silver labeled in cosmetics?

If there is silver in the list of ingredients of cosmetics, then the designations silver or argentum will somehow appear in it. On the label, you can also see the phrases silver oxide, silver citrate, dissolved silver, colloidal silver. There is another code - E174, which hides a silver dye that came into the composition of beauty products from the food industry.

Does it make sense to choose cosmetics without silver?

Despite the fact that the glory of a fighter against harmful bacteria has been entrenched in silver, controversy does not subside around this substance: some deny it medicinal properties, others talk about the toxicity of some forms of silver (in particular, colloidal), arguing that the consequences of their abuse can be a decrease in immunity and even the destruction of DNA molecules.

In any case, you should strictly follow the instructions and apply such cosmetics in a dosed manner, excluding the constant intake of silver into the body.

Are you ready to solve skin problems with silver cosmetics? Write a comment.