A round-up of CosmeticsDesign-Europe’s most-read news from May 2021 shows interest in the fragrance potential of essential oils, Unilever’s patent-pending vegan replacement for carmine red and research from Beiersdorf and Norway dismissing digital blue light skin health concerns.
Ingredient innovation – essential oils and vegan carmine red
A review published in Molecules by a team of international researchers investigated the rise in popularity of essential oils in cosmetics, noting the ‘enormous versatility’ they held for fragrances.
The researchers said essential oils had proven increasingly popular in cosmetics not only for their ability to impart unique and natural fragrances, but also for their scientifically backed health benefits, including anti-ageing and antimicrobial.
Innovation in colour also sparked interest, with Unilever’s announcement it had refined a vegan replacement for carmine red under its prestige brand Hourglass.
In an interview with CosmeticsDesign-Europe, Unilever’s global VP of R&D for prestige brands said the company planned to open-source this patent-pending innovation in the coming year. “This is something that we want everybody to use. So, it is being made available,” Jason Harcup said.
Beiersdorf research and Norway study on digital blue light
Personal care major Beiersdorf countered rising concerns that blue light from digital devices was harmful to skin health, citing its own research that an entire day in front of a monitor equated to just one-minute in the midday sun on a sunny summer day in Germany. These results contrasted Unilever’s earlier research that claimed six hours in front of a digital device equated to 25 minutes in midday sun without protection.
Beiersdorf’s chief scientist of photobiology Dr Ludger Kolbe said: “Through our research activities, we’ve managed to prove that the amount of artificial blue light emitted during conventional use of electronic devices is nowhere near enough to trigger harmful skin effects.”
A separate study from Norway backed this, concluding that protection against artificial blue light, specifically violet-blue (VBL) that had a wavelength of 400-500nm, was not necessary.
UK government and big-brand innovation – exports and beverages
The UK government also started issuing Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certificates digitally to any cosmetic or personal care company wishing to export to China and be exempt from in-country animal testing. The government had worked closely with the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association (CTPA) on creating this digital offering.
Beverage major Vita Coco also unveiled its move into hair care, marking its first venture into the beauty space.