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Bio-Oil Waited 30 Years to Launch Its Second Product — and It's Here

Introducing, the Bio-Oil Dry Skin Gel, an all-over moisturizer best suited for dry skin types.
A white tub of BioOil Dry Skin Gel on orange designed background
Courtesy of brand; Illustration by Clara Hendler

If you've had a baby anytime in the past 30 years, chances are, you've been recommended Bio-Oil Skincare Oil. Launched in 1987 by the South African company Bio-Oil, the oil quickly became a wildly popular moisturizer for scars and stretch marks. It has other uses too — multiple Kardashians have cited it as a favorite face oil — and since it first lined drugstore shelves decades ago, more of us have embraced stretch marks as a badge of honor. But throughout an evolving conversation about body positivity and at least one generation of celebrity skin-care routine write-ups, the Skincare Oil has remained a mainstay. 

But, according to the research team at Bio-Oil, led by brothers Justin and David Letschert, the brand's new product is even better. This fall, Bio-Oil will introduce Dry Skin Gel, a gel-to-oil formula designed explicitly for intensely dry skin.

"We're not a company with a marketing department telling our laboratory what to make," Justin tells Allure. "We don't go looking for products, but this product found us."

The goal was to create an oil formula that moisturized skin without feeling greasy or goopy. The Lescherts are passionate about the value of an oil, as opposed to a cream, for dry skin. "It's madness," says Justin, "that the most common products on the market for treating dry skin [is cream], which is made up of water, which is repelled by the skin. How can one ignore that?” (He's right that skin is fundamentally hydrophobic, although many creams use added oils and humectants to lock in moisture.) 

The company has had an "oil-based research department" for 10 years, says David. His team has been working to create a formula with the highest concentration of oil possible. The result is Dry Skin Gel, which clocks in at a whopping 84 percent oil, along with moisturizing humectants glycerin and urea. "We've tried to make the best-performing dry skin product of all time," says Justin. 

Cosmetic chemist Stephen Alain Ko, who isn't affiliated with the brand, cites Aquaphor and Vaseline as comparable wax- and oil-based products. "The Dry Skin Gel is a thick, gel emulsion, which has a water component [of three percent]," says Ko. "This type of formulation is made with sugar-based emulsifiers and can be found in similar oil gels like the Mustela Nursing Comfort Balm, as well as other gel-in-oil, gel-to-oil, and gel-to-milk cleansers."

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According to the Letscherts, Dry Skin Gel is about to blow those competitors out of the water (or oil, as it were.) "We had Bio-Oil Skincare Oil on the market for 30 years, then only came our second product," says David. "We're definitely not in a rush. It had to be a better product in that category. If it's not going to be a better product, we're not launching it. It's as simple as that."

With confidence like that, you'd imagine they'd be encouraging every single person out there to try the new product. But Justin clarifies that the gel was formulated for people with true dry skin conditions

"Everyone is slapping it on and thinking 'this is my daily moisturizer,'" he says. "We're not saying you can't, but this is for severe dry skin sufferers and dry skin caused by medical conditions." 

Fans have waited decades for Bio-Oil's second act, and there's only have a few more weeks to go. But the Bio-Oil website reveals that Dry Skin Gel isn't the only upcoming launch from the brand. The site lists a daily moisturizer, fragrance, sunscreen, and gentle body wash, all of which are pending release in 2021, and some of which aren't yet named.

For now, we'll have to settle with Product No. 2. Dry Skin Gel is available in three sizes: 1.7-ounce ($7), 3.4-ounce ($12), and 6.7-ounce ($20) jars, and launches September 1 at drugstore and mass retailers like amazon.com online.

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