Glycoproteins description

"Glyco" means "sugar", so glycoproteins are a type of protein linked to a sugar. They're considered a type of peptide and are naturally present in skin's surface as well as throughout the body. On skin, glycoproteins work with ingredients like glycerine, ceramides, and hyaluronic acids to keep skin intact, smooth, and healthy-looking. They can also enhance skin's natural resilience by reinforcing skin barrier strength. Glycoproteins help other peptides be more soluble in water and within skin, so some products add them along with specific peptides as a way to enhance delivery and stability of the formula.

Glycoproteins references

  • Experimental Dermatology, November 2016, pages 865-871
  • Clinical, Cosmetic, and Investigational Dermatology, December 2013, pages 317-323
  • American Journal of Infection Control, December 2006, pages S98-S110

Peer-reviewed, substantiated scientific research is used to assess ingredients in this dictionary. Regulations regarding constraints, permitted concentration levels and availability vary by country and region.

Ingredient ratings


Proven and supported by independent studies. Outstanding active ingredient for most skin types or concerns.


Necessary to improve a formula's texture, stability, or penetration.


Generally non-irritating but may have aesthetic, stability, or other issues that limit its usefulness.


There is a likelihood of irritation. Risk increases when combined with other problematic ingredients.


May cause irritation, inflammation, dryness, etc. May offer benefit in some capability but overall, proven to do more harm than good.


We couldn't find this in our ingredient dictionary. We log all missing ingredients and make continuous updates.

Not rated

We have not yet rated this ingredient because we have not had a chance to review the research on it.