Acmella oleracea extract-loaded serum’s ‘promising potential’ as natural anti-wrinkle product

By Stephen Daniells contact

- Last updated on GMT

Researchers have used Acmella oleracea extracts in an 'all-natural' emulsion to target wrinkles © Jose Luis Pelaez Inc  / Getty Images
Researchers have used Acmella oleracea extracts in an 'all-natural' emulsion to target wrinkles © Jose Luis Pelaez Inc / Getty Images

Related tags: Botox, wrinkles, anti-aging, plant based beauty, serum, Formulation

Extracts of Acmella oleracea formulated in an “all-natural” emulsion serum can reduce the appearance of wrinkles within two weeks, says a new study that also supports the safety and stability of the serum.

The study, led by scientists from Serbian cosmetics company DCP Hemigal, adds to the evidence for A. oleracea’s anti-wrinkle effects. Acmella oleracea​ L., also known as Spilanthes oleracea​ L., and Spilanthes acmella​ L. variety oleracea​, has been touted as a natural alternative to Botox for firming the skin and reducing the presence of wrinkles.

The potential benefits are linked to the plant’s main active molecule N-alkylamide spilanthol.

The new study, published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, ​found that a “novel, safe, effective and high-quality emulsion serums” ​composed of an “innovative glycolipid mixed emulsifier (lauryl glucoside/myristyl glucoside/polyglyceryl-6 laurate)”​ combined with an Acmella oleracea​ extract led to “noticeable reduction/improvement”​ in skin wrinkles around the eyes and corners of the mouth in as little as two weeks.

Serum formulation

The researchers tested the rheological parameters of the proposed serum and found that it displayed “favorable shear-thinning flow behavior”. The serum also presented good stability data at the end of the DMTA (dynamic-mechanical thermoanalysis) test.

A serum containing 15% of emollients and 1% of emulsifier was to test in in vivo​ tests in 16 healthy adults (12 women and four men).

​In vivo investigations demonstrated the overall satisfying skin tolerability/preliminary safety profile of the tested serum sample and noticeable improvement/reduction in all analyzed skin wrinkle parameters, thus confirming a beneficial effect on the appearance of periorbital and perioral expression lines and wrinkles,” ​wrote the researchers.

The researchers noted that the potential mechanism(s) of action of A. oleracea​ extracts are not fully elucidated, it has been proposed that spilanthol may be a rapid-acting topical muscle relaxant that can “rapidly and progressively inhibit the repeated contractions of facial expression muscles (botox-like action), thus achieving claimed instantaneous effect on facial expression lines and wrinkles”​, said the researchers.

“Overall, alongside the demonstrated satisfactory rheological and stability properties, the good general skin performances and established anti-wrinkle effects proved the developed ​A. oleracea extract-loaded natural serum, stabilized with novel glycolipid emulsifier, to be promising and prospective topical anti-wrinkle product,” ​they concluded.

Anti-aging on the decline, anti-wrinkle on the rise

The development of targeted anti-wrinkle formulations is in-line with recent comments from Anthony Gonzalez, director of global skin care and trend innovation at Avon. Speaking with our European edition last month​, Gonzalez said that the notion of anti-aging products will fade out in two to three years.

“… you’re going to stop seeing the term ‘anti-ageing’ and start seeing terms like ‘wrinkle treatment’ or [brands] talking about what the products are actually doing; not generic anti-ageing,” ​he said.

Source: International Journal of Cosmetic Science
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1111/ics.12726
‘All-natural’ anti-wrinkle emulsion serum with Acmella oleracea extract: A design of experiments (DoE) formulation approach, rheology and in vivo skin performance/efficacy evaluation
Authors: S.M. Savic, et al.

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