Estimated to be available commercially early next year, the ‘intelligent filters’ can be used to create sun care products, as well as skin care and makeup formulations, with variable protection levels.
Protection tailored to the body
According to Blueshift’s Dr Bernd Walzel, formulators will be able to create sun protection products that provide protection tailored to the area of the body where they are applied.
“If you spend your day in the sun you would receive much more sun on your shoulders and nose than your stomach. Applying the same conventional product all over could lead to a burnt nose and shoulders,” he told CosmeticsDesign-Europe.com.
“However, with these intelligent filters the SPF will adapt on the nose to provide higher protection,” he added.
According to Walzel, the filters can range from no absorption, so no protection, to the levels of protection offered by more conventional sunscreens such as SPF 15 or 30.
Similarly, if radiation levels change as they do during the day, the intelligent filters can adapt to these changes ensuring continued protection.
Although Walzel explained that the technology adapts quickly to changes in solar intensity, he said the speed of adaptation is an area of research for the company.
Having a filter that does not react as quickly could also be an interesting proposition, he explained, as this could help prolong the protection provided by traditional UV filters that become less effective over time on exposure to radiation.
Sun protective make-up and skin care products also stand to benefit from the intelligent filters.
Many daily use products such as day moisturizers or foundations already contain UV filters although for much of the day the wearer is indoors and not exposed to UV rays. Incorporating intelligent filters into such products would allow the consumer to benefit from protection only when it is needed, Walzel explained.
Blueshift recently won the McKinsey Venture 2010 business plan competition in Switzerland and the company is planning on making this technology available to formulators from early 2011.