active ingredients from fermentation

The beauty of fermentation

To close the carbon loop of the beauty products to protect our environment, the beauty and personal care industry has been working on minimizing the environmental impacts among all processes such as how each ingredient is responsibly resourced, how to eco-friendly produce products and find a way to minimize its carbon footprints in-use. One of the challenges for formulators is to find environmental-friendly ingredients while not compromising efficacy. Over the last few years, we are seeing increased use of claims of fermentation on facial care especially in China, followed by US and Germany.

The Beauty of Fermentation

According to Mintel, 47% of Chinese beauty consumers associate effectiveness with ingredients from microorganism such as fermentation. Better bioavailability of active ingredients from fermentation has been scientifically proven by the leading ingredient suppliers and personal care products have a new, ambitious goal: fermentation!

What was once a century old process of food preservation and alcohol production, fermentation has since transitioned from the food industry into creating some of the most unique cosmetic raw materials. Fermentation, or the process of breaking down ingredients into smaller molecules, enhances the bioavailability of natural ingredients and their secondary metabolites to the skin. Fermentation ardently improves the quality and potency of the ingredient’s active phytochemicals and ultimately, facilitates easier absorption.

Fermentation claims in skin care products

While fermentation claims are rapidly increasing in skin care, there is an opportunity to capitalize on the natural and sustainable claims available with the use of fermented materials. Fermentation as a process can be an effective alternative to harsh reaction inducing chemicals, as it minimizes waste, greenhouse emissions, land usage, and water consumption. This results in the upgrade of traditional, raw cosmetic actives to ingredients referred to as “hero ingredients”, that are more consumer friendly. More specifically, sustainable beauty speaks to the ethos of the consumers who are primarily driving the industry – Millennials and Generation Z.

While many consumers view natural ingredients as a safer alternative, the cosmetic claims associated with fermented ingredients are also of great importance, in comparison to their mainstream ingredients counterparts. These claims include age-defying, skin cell regeneration, wrinkle reduction, pollution protection, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidative. While Evonik is thoroughly committed to sustainability, we are also able to offer several classes of products that are produced through fermentation and backed by enthralling efficacy.

Biosurfactants produced through fermentation

RHEANCE® One possesses powerful cleansing and efficient foaming properties, while effectively solubilizing oils and fragrances. The product is 100% based on natural renewable ingredients, and is 100% biodegradable. Due to its superior biodegradability profile, it exhibits low toxicity to aquatic organisms and has a low potential for bioaccumulation. RHEANCE ® One is applicable for many different applications such as facial and baby cleansing, oral care formulations, and shampoos. The properties of the cleanser will differ dependent on the pH of the solution.

Active Ingredients produced through fermentation technology

Focusing more on Active Ingredients, Evonik’s Hyaluronic Acid specialties offer three exciting products that are produced through fermentation technology. Hyaluronic acid is important for tissue hydration, lubrication, and cellular function. HyaCare® and HyaCare® 50  are biosynthetic, non-animal derived hyaluronic acid. HyaCare® is based on a unique production method by fermentation of a novel strain, Bacillus subtilis. Compared to the commonly used strain Streptococcus equi, Bacillus subtilis is a safe and non-pathogenic host. The compatibility and tissue-friendliness of hyaluronic acid allows it to be used in skin care products as an excellent moisturizer. HyaCare® 50 is a low molecular weight hyaluronic acid (50 kDa) which upregulates Tight Junction Proteins (TJP-1 and TJP-2) and increases the amount of Hyaluronic Acid (HAS-2 gene) produced in-vivo. HyaCare® Filler CL MB is an emulsion containing small particles of cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid. As cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid is well known for its use as a dermal filler, and therefore, HyaCare® Filler CL MB has properties similar to a super absorbing polymer. The product has both instant (15 minutes) and long lasting (6 hours) effects for wrinkle reduction and skin improvement.

Cholesterol Specialties, Peptides and Ceramides

Cholesterols and peptides are critical for the formation of a healthy skin barrier, skin hydration, and promoting cellular repair. TEGO® Sterol 7-DHC V is derived from the renewable fermentation of plant phytosterols. This ingredient is a natural sterol of the skin and is converted to vitamin Dȝ upon exposure to UV radiation to enhance skin cell differentiation and protect from sun-related damage. TEGO® COSMO EPL is a naturally renewable peptide made from bacterial fermentation composed of Epsilon-Poly-L-Lysine hydrochloride. This ingredient is multi-functional with broad effects on oral care, skin care, and hair care. Commonly used as a food preservative, EPL can also be used at a lower concentration to protect hair and skin and improve the feel of cosmetic formulations.

Free sphingoid bases are naturally found in the stratum corneum and are involved in the skin’s natural defense system. Evonik’s unique production process isolates the sphingoid bases from Tonka Bean. In addition to the eco-friendly benefits of the process, the final products are skin-identical as they contain the correct stereochemistry. Phytophingosine has anti-microbial properties that help balance skin microbiome against bacteria that are responsible for problem skin. The in-vivo studies show it performs well on its own and when used in synergy with other skin calming actives. SPHINGONY® strengthens the hair follicle, improves scalp health, and balances the hair life cycle. Product success can be linked to its skin-identical naturality, which allows for a more effective uptake within the body.

Interested to learn more? Visit our web based customer platform intoBeauty® (registration required), where you can download documentation, request samples, and enjoy videos about our new products.