Anti-pollution beauty and testing: your questions answered

By Lucy Whitehouse

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Vitamin c

Anti-pollution beauty and testing: your questions answered
At our recent anti-pollution forum, we gathered industry experts to discuss the global rising trend. Here, we look back at some of the top questions submitted by listeners on the subject of how to test anti-pollution claims.

For the rest of our Q&A series, keep an eye out for future articles: Maintaining Consumer Appetite, The Regulatory Considerations and Pollution’s Effect on Hair

Who are the experts?

To offer their industry expertise and deep market insight, CosmeticsDesign put your questions to two of our speakers:

  • Dr. Maria Coronado, Euromonitor: ingredients analyst and doctor in chemical engineering. Find some of her recent insights here.

  • Dr. Alain Khaiat, Seers Consulting: cosmetics consultant and contractor; an expert in the Asia region.

How to test anti-pollution claims?

AK: A number of in vitro tests have been developed using cigarette smoke and the pollution. Measuring survival of cells in culture, their viability, etc. I refer you to the Bioalternatives website​ for examples of what can be done.

MC: It is widely accepted that most pollutants are detrimental to skin causing dryness, acne, dark spots, wrinkles, inflammation and skin aging. There is no agreement on which pollution bio-markers are best to assess the efficacy of anti-pollution products.

Find a full article from Maria Coronado on how to test anti-pollution claims here.

A simpler test?

Question: A majority of the anti-oxidant materials, when you look past the marketing blurb, appear to have primary activity of either improving the skin barrier  or as anti-oxidants.

Would it not be best/simplest to show an 'anti-pollution' activity by showing an improvement in the skin barrier (TEWL), or by showing an anti-oxidant activity - DPPH etc.?

AK: Antioxidants in products primary function is to block the free radicals activity. Any improvement to the skin barrier is based on these free radical damages, while with pollution you need not only to block the free radicals but also to reconstruct the skin barrier. By the way, many antioxidants used are good at protecting the product, less at protecting the skin!

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