Here, Maria Coronado, Euromonitor ingredients analyst and doctor in chemical engineering, gives her take on how light pollution can impact on the skin, and how the industry can respond.
New stressors in the digital age
Recent research about skin-ageing suggests that in addition to UV radiation and air pollution, the exposure to infrared light and intense visible light from smartphones is likely to have an impact on the skin, contributing to skin pigmentation and skin ageing through oxidative stress.
As the use of digital devices such as laptops, smartphones and tablets with very strong blue light waves increases, worldwide concerns about the potential damage to the skin health and appearance are rising among consumers. Cosmetic companies are already taking steps to develop formulations with claims that go beyond UVB and UVA sun protection.
For instance, Lancôme markets 'UV Expert XL Shield' that protects against UV, urban pollution and blue light emitted by smartphones.
In 2016, Junetics launched its Screen Tinted HEV Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 15 that protect against UV and high energy visible and Infrared light and the Australian cosmeceutical company, Synergie Skin, has also recently launched Enviroshield, a spray that contains Elix-IR™, a herb extract claiming to protect the skin against infrared pollution, and Exo-P™, a fermented ingredient that protects the skin against air pollution.
Ingredients with specific claims
Although mineral sunscreens such as TiO2 and ZnO might offer some protection against different types of light pollution (due to the formation of a physical barrier between our skin and the HEV and Infrared energies emitted by digital devices), many ingredients suppliers have developed specific ingredients with light protection claims.
For instance, Vantage Specialty Ingredients has recently developed Liposhield, a patented ingredient derived from melanin that to protect the skin from the damage caused by HEV light, and Greentech is marketing Soliberine, which claims to protect the skin against all types of light radiations.