Acacia Senegal Gum for Skin – Benefits & Uses

Acacia Senegal Gum for Skin

The Acacia Senegal tree looks sorta like a tree you would see in the movie Lion King. The tree looks cool but it’s also useful in skincare and cosmetics products.

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Learn about the benefits of Acacia Senegal Gum which comes from this tree’s sap. It’s a little different than the chewing gum most of us are used to.

What Is Acacia Senegal Gum?

What is Acacia Senegal Gum?

Acacia Senegal Gum, or Gum arabic, is derived from the Acacia Senegal tree. This natural gum is a complex polysaccharide made from hardened sap from Acacia trees.

It’s been used for thousands of years and loved for its wide range of uses. It’s a complex mixture of calcium, magnesium, and potassium salts of arabic acid. It has a mild smell so it generally doesn’t change the product scent by much.

You’ll find Acacia Senegal Gum in skincare, cosmetics, and even in food. Based on its thickening benefits, it’s common in cosmetics such as lipstick and mascara, but you’ll also find it in facial cleansers, shampoos, serums, and even face masks.

It’s commonly used in formulations with xanthan gum since it can help reduce the stickiness acacia senegal gum can cause.

Acacia senegal gum for skin

Acacia Senegal Gum Benefits for Skin

This plant-based ingredient can help soothe the skin but it’s commonly used as a thickening agent. Acacia Senegal Gum can also help skincare products stick to the skin. This is helpful for products such as sunscreen, makeup, and facial masks.

It’s largely used for it’s texture enhancing properties but it offers direct benefits to the skin as well. These same properties can also act as an emollient to help lock in moisture. According to Botani, this ingredient can also help reduce eye puffiness based on its anti-inflammatory properties. That combined with its astringent properties help it tighten skin for a firmed and toned appearance. 

Thickening Agent

When the powder is mixed with water it forms a jelly-like consistency. This can help bring skincare products to the perfect viscosity and texture for easier application and use.


This means it can help lock moisture into the skin. Acacia senegal gum helps form a barrier of on the skin which can prevent moisture from expelling from the top layer of the skin.

Film Forming

This ingredient can help products stick to the skin while forming a “film.” This trait is beneficial for products such as mascara, lip stick, and sunscreen that need to stay in place to provide the desired result.

Acacia Senegal Gum benefits for skin

Is Acacia Senegal Gum Safe?

Acacia Senegal gum is nontoxic and Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) by the US Food and Drug Administration. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel also concluded Acacia Senegal Gum and Acacia Senegal Gum Extract are safe to use in cosmetics. However, there wasn’t enough evidence to conclude the safety of Acacia Catechu Gum, Acacia Concinna Fruit Extract, Acacia Farnesiana Extract, Acacia Farnesiana Gum, or Acacia Senegal Extract (other ingredients derived from various species of the acacia plant).

While it’s considered safe, there are reports suggesting it lead to allergies or skin sensitivities in rare cases.

Based on it’s evaluation above by the FDA, it’s also safe to eat. Based on this, you’ll also find this ingredient in household items, food, and personal care.

Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about Acacia Senegal Gum.

Bottom Line

Most agree this is a non-toxic ingredient you don’t need to be concerned about. However, you should be cautious if you have known allergies or have sensitive skin.

Also known as:

Gum Arabic, Wild Acacia, Acacia Gum, and Acacia Senegal Gum


  • International Journal of Toxicology 24(Suppl 3):75-118 2005

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