Tag Archive | personal care

Intelligent design

God’s creation is one of the best R&D labs we know. Using technology to emulate nature has resulted in revolutionary innovations that make our lives easier, healthier, and more sustainable: from phones, whose loudspeakers were inspired by human eardrums, to entirely new approaches of creating color inspired by the color-shifting properties of a butterfly’s wings. Called biomimicry, there’s potential for replicating nature’s intelligence to produce packaging that decomposes and is not harmful to the environment.

According to the newly formed conglomerate Biomimicry 3.8, the biomimicry field has changed at a stunning pace over recent years. Biomimicry provides a strategy for practical applications that emulate years of brilliant designs. From durable but biodegradable packaging such as sea beans, large bean pods that ripen to become woody and heavy, or the coconut palm, which dispatches its seed inside a hard shell that contains everything it needs to survive, many of nature’s containers can serve as inspiration for the future’s innovative packaging ideas.

Think of the possibilities if technology of a pelican pouch that scoops three gallons of seawater then returns to shape could be mimicked. A flexible bottle design that fills up like a balloon only to collapse when emptied would provide options for consumers on the go or for easily returning containers for recycling hundreds at a time.

What if we could store precious liquids in a cellular matrix like fruits and vegetables, which are often times more than 90% water but don’t slosh because it’s stored between cells. Or, if we could use a cellular matrix for the skin of a bottle; once emptied it could be eaten like an orange slice or dissolve in the bath tub instead of a landfill.

Nature is filled with wonders that tote, store and protect its treasures from a treacherous world. If we take the time to seek sustainable solutions by emulating nature’s time-tested patterns, we can learn from nature that has already solved many of the problems we are grappling with.

Read more about packaging innovation in the December 2011 issue of GCI magazine.

Green opportunities

The increasing demand for natural products can have a negative impact on the environment. Concerned about biopiracy and species extinction, the industry is striving to source its raw material in the best way in order to protect the environment—using certified channels, fair trades and, now, plant cell cultures.

Arch Personal Care Products plans to launch its Regenistem line at the 2011 In-cosmetics show in Milan. The Regenistem process allows the company to take only small quantities of plant cells from seeds or leaves, grow them in culture plates and then into bioreactors. The controlled environment allows the company to push the potential of the plants to the limit and manufacture very interesting ingredients.

“The process allows us to harvest rare or old plants and isolate unique actives or enhance the production of them, all while controlling the biomass in the laboratory,” says Vince Gruber, PhD, director of research for Arch Personal Care Ingredients. The process minimizes requirements for harvest and cultivation, which wastes resources and opens the world of opportunity for the industry.The first in this line, Regenistem Rice is an extract from a particular red rice species that is more than 1,000 years old and comes from a high elevation in Nepal.

Brand owners interested in a unique label claim—or simply in the actives and what they can do for the skin—can take advantage of such biotechnological processes. “Brands are driven by unique ideas,” explains Gruber. “Plants that are unique or that grow in unique environments and offer benefits to the skin allow brands to build stories around them.” Driven by innovative companies looking to carve out a niche for all-natural products, the process is renewable, not based on petroleum.

Similarly, Sederma has invested €1 million to create a plant cell culture lab and library, allowing the company a never ending source for molecules of interest by controlling the cultures. After five years of research, Sederma will launch its first product based on plant cell culture that claims substantiated innovative positioning in 2011. The development of products based on plant cell culture doesn’t exploit wild or crop plants, allowing the company to meet evolving consumer needs in a new way. The company has also improved plant extraction with new processes such as supercritical carbon dioxide extraction, which needs limited energy, recycles the gaseous solvent and doesn’t discharge any solvent to the environment.

Read more about green chemistry in the January 2011 issue of GCI magazine.

Thursday 13: Cosmetic products I love

1. Pureology Antifade Shampoo and Conditioner. Just the best shampoo and conditioner I have ever used. I like Essentials and Hydrate Systems the best. The only one I really didn’t like was NanoWorks. My hair is so soft.
2. Pravana Keratin Fusion Revitalizing Shampoo and Conditioner. For those times when you need a break from your usual shampoo and conditioner.
3. Methode Physiodermie Soft Face Bio Peeling. Makes my face soft as a baby’s butt. What more can I say?
4. MD Formulations Facial Cleanser. My absolute fav face wash featuring serious AHAs. I can’t afford it now so Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is a good, cheaper substitute.
5. Neutrogena Acne Stress Control. Takes place of a moisturizer in the summer to help my face stay smooth but not oily or greasy. Though I can’t say it solved my blemish problems, I was really surprised by how smooth, and not dry, it feels on my skin.
6. Olay Active Hydrating Beauty Fluid/Complete All Day UV Moisture. It’s not that I love this one so much but I have found that it’s a decent base and I’ve tried a lot that I don’t like. The Complete I don’t like as much but it’s got the every day UV protection.I’ve discovered that I like Cetaphil’s moisturizer even better.
7. Neutrogena Skin Clearing Oil-Free Makeup. Applies easily and dries to a nice finish. Has SPF, which I like. The “blemish fighter” claim again I am not so sure about but I like it anyway. I haven’t tried mineral cosmetics since they first started to gain popularity, so I’d like to try some of the new-fangled ones … I know they have improved a lot.
8. Jane Iredale Barely Rose PurePressed Blush. Their other products are great, too.
9. Eyelash Curler. I’m not a fan of the bent lashes, but a quick squeeze gets my wiry lashes in order.
10. Black mascara. Honestly, I use just about any mascara. Right now I’m using CoverGirl’s Professional All In One Mascara. It was on sale.
11. Clinique Quickliner. It’s a best-seller and there’s a reason for it. But I’ll also use others. I’ve got Max Factor in my bag now.
12. Slant Tweezer. If I ever lose my stainless steel Slant Tweezer from Tweezerman, I don’t know what I’d do. No other tweezer compares. (Yes, it really does matter.)
13. Dove Original Clean deodorant (invisible solid). They piqued my interest with their slender, sexy packaging, and now I’m hooked.