Clinique's RepairWear Day SPF 15 Intensive Cream stood out from among the other finalists in the 'facial skincare-moisturiser US$20 and over' category, in part due to its "skin signalling repair technology", which the cosmetics company claimed stimulated the skin's natural repair process.
According to Debbie D'Aquino, the cream took 15 months to develop and the patented technology used in its formulation is called "RNA Fragments".
Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is a chemical found in the nucleus and cytoplasm of cells that plays an important role in protein synthesis and other chemical activities of the cell. RNA is a type of nucleic acid that contains ribose, phosphate, and bases that contain nitrogen.
The structure of RNA is similar to that of DNA and is used by most organisms to read the genetic information found in DNA and to produce specific organic molecules used in the development and functioning of cells.
Other factors in the success of RepairWear Day SPF 15 Intensive Cream were its new ingredients, a floating matrix and innovative sunscreen encapsulation that were claimed to reduce irritation and sensitivity.
D'Aquino elaborated: "A special polymer matrix holds the sunscreen at the surface of the skin - keeping it from penetrating. The less a sunscreen penetrates, the less likely it will cause a sensitivity reaction. We also surround the chemical sunscreen in a silica bead that limits direct contact with the skin."
The description of the winning product said a "special ingredient complex provides energy necessary to perform all skin's biological functions." "The energy ingredients we use are AMP and Artemia Extract,"D'Aquino added.
Aminoethyl Propanol (AMP) is an organic pH adjuster that is commonly used to maximise the effects of styling products.
Artemia is a marine algae that provides a source of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), an important source of cellular energy; it also contains a substance called diguanosine tetraphosphate, which is said to energise and rejuvenate skin cell function, revitalising tired-looking skin.
The winner was said to be distinguished from other products because it: "Includes UV and heat activated ingredients which empower skin to repair existing damage in multiple ways by providing barrier, collagen, free radicals and anti-irritant repair all with an SPF 15."
D'Aquino explained the increasing trend for such multifunctional products: "Keeping skin healthy, particularly when it comes to UV exposure is no longer accomplished by just using an SPF ingredient."
"The more we learn about the biology and workings of skin as it's exposed to environmental assaults, the more we need to put into our treatment formulation. UVB protection is no longer enough to protect us from the 21st century environment we now live in," she added.
RepairWear Day SPF 15 Intensive Cream contains many raw materials, one of the main compounds being Danisco's Betafin BP 20.
Describing its importance as an ingredient, D'Aquino said: "Betafin is really betaine, which is a well-known osmoprotectant. These are molecules that act to bind and retain water. Many of our new moisturizers use these types of osmoprotectants just for this reason."
"These osmoprotectants protect against not only drying or dehydration but also UV stress," she claimed.
Betafin is a Danisco tradename for betaine, an extremely versatile molecule extracted from sugar beet as an osmotic pressure regulating agent and methyl donor.
In addition to its use in cosmetics formulations, it is also used in feeds and in a wide range of food applications as well as in dietary supplements, pharmaceuticals, dental products and for fermentation purposes.
Headquartered in Copenhagen, Danisco is also one of the largest and most efficient sugar producers in Europe, with operations in a total of 40 countries. It was founded in 1989 and is listed on the Copenhagen Stock Exchange.