Squalane is an "in" ingredient these days, but all the hype is merited! The short: it's a lipid (fat, or oil) naturally found in skin and it can be sustainably extracted from food waste and used in cosmetics! That is some kind of beautiful symbiosis I tell you.
Squalane is plant-derived, and it's counterpart squalene, is naturally found in skin, except in animal-form is called squalEne (with the e, see?). But in this form it oxidizes quickly and isn't useable in skincare, plus it's derived from shark liver when used in skincare. Although squalene is what human skin naturally produces (and loses with age, like all of skin's good stuff!), there is a way to reintroduce it to the skin, and it's so simple... with the plant-form, squalane!
Squalane (with the a = plant-form) is a much more stable form, readily adopted by the dermis as its very own, (like when a dog nurtures a kitten as her own, awww!). It absorbs quickly and rarely causes any issues for any skin type. It adds just enough emollience and lubrication to the skin without feeling heavy or greasy. Plus, being super-stable, it's got a nice long shelf life.
It's kind of a perfect cosmetic ingredient, IMO.
It helps reduce TEWL (transepidermal water loss) and protects skin's acid mantle, which is key to having a barrier that's weather-proof! Sourcing it from olives vs. sugarcane results in basically the same product, but sugarcane may be the more sustainable source, and it's what we prefer.
There's also something called Hemisqualane, which is half-molecular weight squalane. Same idea, it's just a very light oil, perfect for oilier skin, since even oily skin needs nourishment and moisture.
Find it in our City oil and Midnight oil!