Your Guide to Gluten-Free Skin Care

What you put on your skin can affect your gluten sensitivity.

For people with gluten sensitivity, gluten-allergies or celiac disease, steering clear of foods with gluten is a given. But many don’t consider the affect skincare products that contain gluten can have on their bodies.

Because reactions to gluten come from your digestive system and not your skin, many experts will say that the products you use shouldn’t be a problem unless you ingest them. But many people with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease experience a strange, sometimes metallic or fragrance-y taste in their mouth, especially if they use makeup and skincare products every day. This could be a result of gluten cross-contamination since many makeup and skincare products contain gluten.

You might not even be aware of it, but it’s difficult or impossible to apply makeup, moisturizers, lotions, balms and other skincare products without ingesting a small amount of gluten. It only takes a small amount to cause symptoms or side effects. The good news is that many popular skin care products have gluten-free options, or are manufactured in certified gluten-free facilities.

For those with gluten sensitivity or gluten allergies, follow these helpful dos and don’ts when it comes to your skincare products.


  • Avoid gluten-containing lip balms and lipsticks to avoid ingestion.
  • Thoroughly wash your hands, including under your nails, every time you touch a product with gluten.
  • Check the ingredient lists on all makeup, moisturizers, lotions, lip balms and skincare products.


  • Use a product with gluten anywhere near your mouth. 
  • Use powders that contain gluten because they can become airborne and then inhaled. 
  • Rub your face or touch your lips without washing your hands first.

A young woman applying moisturizer to her face.

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