Too Good To Be True - Seraphim London Skincare's Green Tea Clay Mask

Too Good To Be True - Seraphim London Skincare's Green Tea Clay Mask

On 23rd May 2018

Found in the ground, mud-masking has been around since way back when and for good reason too. While in recent times you’ll find the stuff bottled in fancy packaging - alongside a host of other swanky ingredients – intrinsically, the fundamental components remain the same: clay.

Aside from soaking up all traces of dirt and grease the results of drying clay can be found in a host of skincare products that treat all-manner of complaints – think cleansers that tackle redness, exfoliators for sensitive skin and masks that incite hydration.

An often under-appreciated addition to our skincare routines, when used once or twice a week a good clay mask can go a long way at drawing out impurities and there are even several different types to look out for.

The most common of which is Bentonite clay. A form known for its super-absorbing capabilities, this is great for tightening, acne-clearing and getting rid of impurities.

One thing to note here though is that unlike other masks, you should never really let a clay mask fully dry.

This is because, while they come in three phases – damp, drying and dry – the latter can draw moisture from the skin, causing dehydration and irritation.

Don’t feel like you have to cover your entire face either. If you have combination skin and find that clay can be drying in certain areas, only use it on those that need attention. They can also be used to speed up healing as a spot treatment too.

I use Seraphim Green Tea Clay Mask every second day as part of my care routine. It is gentle enough and won't dry out like most other clay masks. I gently rinse off with water before applying Seraphim's Botox Moisturiser. I even double up by adding a drop of Seraphim's Marula Oil. I love this all over my skin - it feels amazing every time.

If masking is not part of your current facial cleansing, have a think about switching it up. Trust me, you won't regret it.


Ninah K.


Main Benefits and Applicability of Plant Extracts in Skin Care Products Ana Sofia Ribeiro 1,†, Marilene Estanqueiro 1,†,*, M. Beatriz Oliveira 2 and José Manuel Sousa Lobo 1,† 1 Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Technology, Department of Drug Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira, 228, Porto 4050-313, Portugal; E-Mails: (A.S.R.); (S.L.) 2 REQUIMTE/LAQV, Chemical Sciences Department, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira, 228, Porto 4050-313, Portugal; E-Mail: † These authors contributed equally to this work. * Author to whom correspondence should be addressed; E-Mail:; Tel.: +351-220-428-821; Fax: +351-226-093-390. Academic Editor: Enzo Berardesca Received: 9 March 2015 / Accepted: 31 March 2015 / Published: 10 April 2015 Abstract: Natural ingredients have been used for centuries for skin care purposes. Nowadays, they are becoming more prevalent in formulations, due to consumers’ concerns about synthetic ingredients/chemical substances. The main benefits reported for plant extracts, used in skin care, include antioxidant and antimicrobial activities and tyrosinase inhibition effect. In this review, some examples of plants from Portuguese flora, whose extracts have shown good properties for skin care are presented. However, despite the known properties of plant extracts, few studies reported the development of formulations with them. More work in this field can be accomplished to meet consumer demand. Keywords: plant extracts; antioxidant activity; tyrosinase inhibition; antimicrobial activity; cosmetics OPEN ACCESS

Cosmetics 2015, 2 49 1. Natural Ingredients in Cosmetics Skin constitutes the largest living organ that protects the body from the external environment, helping to regulate temperature and fluid balance, keeping out harmful microbes and chemicals and offering some protection against sunlight. The outermost layer of the skin is the stratum corneum, a selectively permeable, heterogeneous layer of the epidermis, which protects against desiccation and environmental challenge and retains sufficient water to allow it to function. Impairment in skin barrier function is often demonstrated by an altered integrity of the stratum corneum, with a consequent increase in transepidermal water loss and decrease in skin hydration [1,2]. Despite having no legal value, the term cosmeceutical is commonly used to define cosmetic products with active ingredients promoting drug-like benefits. Thus, a cosmeceutical have in their composition ingredients with medicinal properties that manifest beneficial topical actions and provide protection against degenerative skin conditions. They improve appearance by delivering nutrients necessary for healthy skin. They are able to improve skin tone, texture and radiance while reduce wrinkles. Cosmeceuticals are the fast-growing segment of the natural personal care industry [3,4]. Although natural ingredients have been traditionally used for centuries for skin care purposes, they are becoming more prevalent in contemporary formulations [5]. The term “natural” is defined as something or an ingredient that is produced by the nature or found in nature and is directly extracted from plants or animal products [6]. Sources of natural ingredients can include herbs, fruits, flowers, leaves, minerals, water and land [5]. The effect of natural ingredients in skin care products depends on their in vitro and in vivo efficacy and the type of dermatological base where they are incorporated [5]. The use of plants for medicinal purposes is as old as humanity and, in the coming years, it is likely we will see the continuation of the emergence on the market of new products containing natural oils and herbs. Plants were the main source of all cosmetics before the use of synthetic substances with similar properties [7]. Natural plant molecules remain particularly interesting for new research. However, the use of extracts requires paying special attention to the extraction methods, plant-to-solvent ratios and the content of active ingredients [8]. Additionally, the use of plant extracts in skin care products is highlighted by consumer demand, who are increasingly concerned with buying ecologically friendly products [9]. However, consumers are often not aware of the fact that natural products are a complex mixture of many chemical compounds that can be responsible for the development of adverse reactions. To overcome this potential problem, researchers should chemically characterize their extracts in respect to composition. Additionally, the in vitro cytotoxic potential of extracts could be performed in several human cell lines, before the use in humans and irritant potential of cosmetic formulations can be screened. These procedures can be an asset to ensure the safety of consumers who choose to use natural products and, consequently, the acceptability of the marketed product. 2. Benefits of Plant Extracts The use of bioactive extracts or phytochemicals from a variety of botanicals in cosmetics accomplishes two functions: care of the body and as ingredients to influence the biological functions of the skin, providing the nutrients for healthy skin [10]. Generally, botanical products are a rich source of

Cosmetics 2015, 2 50 vitamins, antioxidants, essential oils and oils, hydrocolloids, proteins, terpenoids and other bioactive compounds [11]. According to their composition, these extracts can provide different properties. 2.1. Antioxidant Activity The oxidative stress is one of the major mechanisms for skin aging and dermatological conditions [12]. Ultraviolet radiation from sunlight is the most common exogenous factor harmful to the skin. The continuous exposure to environmental factors leads to alterations in the connective tissue due to the formation of lipid peroxides and reactive oxygen species (ROS), as well as enzymes action, which results in several skin disorders [13]. Free radical formation is naturally controlled by various beneficial compounds known as antioxidants. These are radical scavengers providing protection to the human body by inhibition of various oxidizing chain reactions. ROS generated exogenously react with various biomolecules present in the skin and play an important role in skin disorders [14,15]. In this regard, topical application of antioxidants provides an efficient strategy to enrich the endogenous cutaneous system, leading to a decrease in the UV-radiation mediated oxidative damage and prevent oxidative stress-mediated diseases [16–18]. Phenolic compounds are bioactive substances widely distributed in plants, being important constituents of the human diet. Plant phenolics comprise a great diversity of compounds, such as flavonoids (anthocyanins, flavonols, flavones, etc.) and several classes of non-flavonoids (phenolic acids, lignins, stilbenes) [19]. Natural antioxidants are effective in preventing free radical formation by scavenging them or promoting their decomposition and suppressing disorders. Some compounds inhibit the initiation or propagation of oxidative chain reactions, thus preventing or repairing oxidative damage done by body’s cells promoted by oxygen [20]. Phenolic compounds are plants’ secondary metabolites, and their concentration may be influenced by several factors including physiological differences, environmental and geographic conditions, genetic factors and evolution [21]. Antioxidant activity of phenolic compounds varies according to the molecular structures in presence [22]. The structure–activity relationship suggests the number of hydroxyl groups as the most important factor determining the antioxidant activity of the phenolic compounds [23]. The importance of phenolic antioxidants has remarkably increased in the last decade due to their high capacity to scavenge free radicals [24]. Phenolic rich plants could be used, for example, for prevention of skin harmful effects of UV radiation [25]. Phenolic compounds can be delivered to the organism in the form of plant extracts as medicines, dietary supplements and cosmetics. The extract composition in phenolic compounds is strongly influenced by the extractive method as well as the solvent use [26]. 2.2. Tyrosinase Inhibition Effect Melanin is a human pigment responsible for the colour of eyes, hair and skin. It is produced and secreted, through a physiological process called melanogenesis, by the melanocytes, which are distributed in the basal layer of the dermis. There are two types of melanin pigments produced by the melanocytes: eumelanin, black or brown, and pheomelanin, red or yellow. The colour of human skin and hair is determined by the type and distribution of melanin pigment. Each individual of the different racial groups have, in general, the same number of melanocytes; thus, the type of melanin produced depends

Cosmetics 2015, 2 51 on their functioning, i.e., people with darker skin are genetically programmed to constantly produce higher levels of melanin [27]. Upon exposure of the skin to sun radiation, melanogenesis is enhanced by the activation of thyrosinase, a melanogenesis key enzyme [28]. Tyrosinase, a polyphenol oxidase, can catalyze two distinct reactions (Figure 1): the oxidation of L-tyrosine to L-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA) (first reaction) and the oxidation of L-DOPA to dopaquinone (second reaction). Then, dopaquinone, through a non-enzyme-catalysed process, is transformed into leukodopachrome (third reaction). This compound is oxidized into dopachrome (fourth reaction), which is an extremely fast and non-enzyme-catalyzed process. Then, dopachrome is transformed to melanin through a series of chemical- and enzyme-catalyzed reactions. Thus, the referred process shows that dopachrome synthesis can be suppressed when any of the steps are inhibited. However, not all substances that can inhibit the formation of dopachrome are tyrosinase inhibitors, such as for example, thymol [29,30]. Figure 1. Representation of the melanin synthesis. Melanin protects the skin against UV light damage by absorbing UV sunlight and removing the reactive oxygen species. Over-activity of tyrosinase leads to over-production of melanin [31]. Abnormal accumulation and biosynthesis of melanin pigments are responsible for skin disorders such as melasma, freckles and senile lentigo [32]. Numerous approaches have been attempted to find chemicals that inhibit the catalytic activity of tyrosinase, and disrupt the synthesis or release of melanin pigments. Many of these compounds have a tyrosinase inhibiting activity, leading to the decrease of melanin total production. Kojic acid, arbutin and different kinds of vegetal or herb extracts are some of the tyrosinase inhibitors used today [28]. The flavonoids, due to their ROS-scavenging activity and ability to chelate metals at the active site of metalloenzimes, present a pigment reducing action [33]. A number of flavonoids are frequently used in skin-lightening preparation such as aloesin, hydroxystilbene derivates and licorice extracts [28]. There are several tyrosinase inhibitors obtained from natural sources reported in literature which are used for depigmentation or for the disorder of hyperpigmentation of the skin [31].

Cosmetics 2015, 2 52 2.3. Antimicrobial Activity Cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries have an increasing interest in replacing synthetic antimicrobials in topical products. Besides the growing consumer interest for natural agents, microbial resistance to conventional antimicrobials is increasing [34]. Phenolic compounds are synthesized by plants for defense mechanisms [35]. They can act by interacting with the microorganism’s cell membrane or cell wall, leading to changes in membrane permeability, and resulting in cell destruction [36,37]. Phenolics can also penetrate into bacterial cells and promote the coagulation of their content. In another way, phenolic compounds as natural antimicrobials could improve the shelf life of different products, inhibiting the growth of pathogenic microorganisms [38]. This is the case of pequi (Caryocar brasiliense Camb), a typical Brazilian fruit tree. The hydroethanolic extract of their leaves showed antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli, Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus [39]. 3. Plant Extracts and Skin Care Products The following sections are dedicated to common species whose antioxidant, tyrosinase inhibition and antimicrobial activities have been reported as positive for skin care products. The cited examples refer to extracts of plants that can be found in Portugal. Portuguese flora is rich in numerous plants that occur naturally and present potential applicability in health care, but are underexploited. The utilization of extracts from these plants could be an asset sustainable to the environment. 3.1. Castanea Sativa Chestnut, particularly chestnut fruits and leaves are important sources of phenolic compounds [40,41]. However, Barreira et al. have also reported antioxidant properties in C. sativa flowers [42]. Portugal, particularly Trás-os-Montes, is one of the most important European producers of chestnut. The best growing conditions are found at altitudes exceeding 500 m and at low temperatures [41]. Several studies were conducted on chestnut by-products, namely, leaves and shells revealing to be a good source of phenolic compounds with marked biological activity, mainly antioxidant properties [43]. Rutin, hesperidin, quercetin, apigenin, morin, galangin, kaempferol and isoquercitin have been identified in C. sativa leaves [40,44]. Basile et al. have tested and verified the antimicrobial activity of a C. sativa leaves aqueous extract against Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Enterobacter aerogenes, Staphylococcus aureus, Proteus vulgaris, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacter cloacae [44]. In a study developed by Almeida et al., a surfactant-free topical formulation containing an ethanolic C. sativa leaf extract was characterized. No changes in pH and 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH)-scavenging activity were observed after a 6 months storage period at 20 °C and in vivo moisturizing effect was demonstrated that, lasted at least 4 h after products application [45]. The safety and stability of this formulation for topical use was verified. It could be relevant in the prevention and treatment of oxidative stress-mediated diseases and photo-ageing [45].

Cosmetics 2015, 2 53 3.2. Prunus Dulcis Almonds (Prunus dulcis) belong to the Rosaceae family and consist of an outer hull with an intermediate shell that contains a kernel or edible seed covered by a brown skin. Portugal is an important producer of almonds, especially in Algarve and Trás-os-Montes [46,47]. Almonds are useful in the treatment of many disorders, including skin conditions like eczema and pimples [48]. Almond hulls, skins and shells are rich in phenolic compounds [49–52]. When the almonds maturity is reached, the hull splits open and it is obtained the shelled almonds. Normally, in industrial process, the skin (seed coat) is removed from the kern and then discarded. Therefore, in the last few years several research works have been conducted to evaluate the potential use of these by-products derived from almond industrial processing (skins, shells and hulls), as a source of compounds with antioxidant properties [50–56]. Keser and co-workers have determined antioxidant activities and phenolic, flavonoid, phytosterol, lipid soluble vitamin and fatty acids contents of almond kernel extract. The results obtained indicate that almond extract is a good natural source of these compounds [57]. Barreira et al., have evaluated the antioxidant properties of almond green husks, demonstrating good antioxidant properties with very low Median Effective Concentration (EC50) values, particularly for lipid peroxidation inhibition. Therefore, according to the authors, this by-product proved to have a high potential for application in new antioxidant formulations [58]. 3.3. Juglans Regia L. Walnut (Juglans regia L.) is a valuable crop that produces a nut that is very popular and largely consumed. Not only dry fruits (nuts) but also green walnuts, shells, kernels, barks, green walnut husks (epicarp) and leaves have been used in both cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries [59]. Juglans regia L. originates from the Near East, but nowadays it is widely cultivated in Europe, North-Africa and North-America [60]. Walnut’s green husk is a by-product of walnut production, a rich source of phytochemicals, but with scarce use. Their valorization will increase the incomes of the walnut chain production, beyond decreasing a waste produced in large amounts. Different works demonstrated the antioxidant potential of walnut products, especially fruits, leaves and liqueurs produced by green fruits [59,61]. Results further support the fact that skins of walnuts, a rich source of phenolics, are responsible for effective scavenging of free radicals [62]. The extracts and pure phenolic compounds from Juglans regia L. might also be used as natural antioxidants and alternatives to synthetic antioxidants such as BHT (2,6-ditert-butyl-4-methylphenol) [23]. Walnut leaf has been widely used in folk medicine for the treatment of skin inflammations, hyperhidrosis and ulcers and for its antiseptic and astringent properties [63]. An ethanol:water leaf extract of J. regia presented good effectiveness against pro-oxidant species, and the scavenging effects have been described for some polyphenols. As suggested by the authors of the study, the walnut leaf can be used as a source of natural antioxidants, whose extracts can be used in dermatological bases preventing oxidative damage [64]. Walnut green husks can be used as an easily accessible source of compounds with health protective potential and antimicrobial activity [65].

Cosmetics 2015, 2 54 3.4. Olea Europaea Olea europaea fruits (olive) are an important crop in Mediterranean Basin, which produces about 98% of the total world production [66]. Olive trees, fruits, olive oil and olive mill waste contain hydroxytyrosol (2-(3,4-di-hydroxyphenyl) ethanol) and tyrosol (2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)ethanol). These phenolic compounds present antimicrobial, anticarcinogenic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities [67–75]. In addition to its application as food additive and active pharmaceutical ingredient, hydroxytyrosol has great potential as cosmetic ingredient [76]. Due to the beneficial properties of these compounds, the use of olive extracts as raw material in the manufacture of cosmetic products seems to be an interesting innovation approach for cosmetic industries. As a consequence of olive oil extraction, a wet solid waste is produced. This by-product from the olive oil extraction is so rich in hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol that it can be used to produce high content olive extracts [77]. In the subsequent steps to refine and concentrate this product, different by-products containing significant amounts of hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol are obtained, such as dry solid wastes and fat-soluble liquid extracts. The cosmetic raw material to be obtained is a water-soluble liquid extract used as an ingredient. Additionally, the water-soluble olive extracts can be treated to obtain solid extracts, where hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol have been purified and concentrated. Therefore, it is necessary to develop analytical procedures to control the industrial processes to obtain the required olive extracts and to assess the quality of cosmetic products containing them [76]. Olive leaf has gained interest due to the numerous benefits for health, which is mainly attributed to oleuropein, which can constitute up to 6%–9% of dry matter in leaves, and related derivatives. However, other secoiridoids and flavonoids should contribute to the overall antioxidant activity of the olive leaf polar extracts [78,79]. Goulas et al. have demonstrated that olive leaves are a robust source of flavonoids and the total flavonoids contribute to 13%–27% of the total radical scavenging activity. The main leaf constituent identified and found to act as the dominant radical scavenger was luteolin 7-O-glucoside. These authors have concluded that olive leaf is a stable source of bioactive flavonoids [78]. 3.5. Helichrysum Stroechas (L.) Moench Helichrysum genus (Asteraceae) includes more than 500 species that are widespread around the world [80]. A great number of biological activities are usually attributed to this genus, such as anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, antioxidant, antimicrobial, cough relief and treatment of colds and wounds [81]. Its chemistry is complex, with a wide variety of chemical classes including flavonoids, chalcones, phloroglucinol derivatives, essential oils, α-pyrones and diterpenes [82]. Helichrysum stoechas (L.) Moench (Asteraceae) is a perennial species growing to 0.5 m, in dry, rocky and sandy habitats of the Natural Park of Montesinho territory, Trás-os-Montes, North-eastern Portugal. H. stroechas (L.) Moench decoctions have been used with medicinal purpose for cold, bronchitis and fever [83]. Moreover, the antioxidant potential of extracts of this plant could support the development of cosmetic/cosmeceutical products [81,84–86]. Barroso et al. have characterized phenolic compounds of the hydroalcoholic extract and decoction of H. stroechas flowering areal parts and have evaluated their antioxidant potential. Eighteen phenolic compounds were identified and, comparatively to decoction, form the hydroalcoholic extract that

Cosmetics 2015, 2 55 presented the highest antioxidant activity, which can be correlated with its higher phenolic compounds content. Additionally, the same authors have developed microspheres containing the lyophilized extract and these were subsequently incorporated into a moisturizer [86]. 3.6. Quercus Robur Oak (Quercus rubur) is a native tree in Europe, western Asia and northern Africa. Several polyphenols have already been identified from different parts of these plant [87,88]. Q. robur bark extracts have shown free radical scavenging activity, and against superoxide anion, hydroxyl radical and singlet oxygen [89,90]. Almeida et al. prepared extracts from oak leaves and verified the presence of ellagic acid, rutin and hyperoside, and phenolic compounds along with two unidentified flavonols. The ethanol:water (4:6) leaf extract presented potent free radical scavenging activity and iron chelating activity, as well as strong absorption in the Ultraviolet Radiation B (UVB) range. Considering the well-established role of free radicals and iron on the UV photodamage, the studied extract presented interesting features for application as topical antioxidant. The authors have also performed a patch test to study the skin tolerance of the extract verifying a good skin tolerance after a single application under occlusion [91]. 3.7. Glycyrrhiza Glabra Glycyrrhiza glabra, also known as Licorice or sweet wood, is native in Europe (Portugal, Spain, France, among others), Middle East (Syria, Turkey, Iran) and Asia (China) [88]. It is a perennial herb which possesses sweet taste. The main taproot, harvested for medicinal use, is soft, fibrous and has a bright yellow interior [91]. It was one of the most widely known medicines in ancient history. Licorice is good for skin eruptions, including dermatitis, eczema, pruritus and cysts. Anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antibacterial properties were also described [88]. Some of the chemical constituents of Glycyrrhiza glabra have been identified as antioxidants, such as polyphenolic flavonoids [87]. Licorice contains glycyrrhizin, glycyrrhetinic acid, flavonoids, asparagine, iso-flavonoids and chalcones [91]. Glabridin is the main ingredient of the hydrophobic fraction of licorice extract and has been shown to inhibit tyrosinase activity in B16 murine melanoma cells [92,93]. Morteza-Semnani et al., verified that licorice root extract were more effective than other commercial antioxidants in protecting hydroquinone from oxidative degradation, for three months [89]. Another interesting study was developed by Hara and co-workers, demonstrating that Glycyrrhizia glabra root extract effectively inhibit diacetyl formation, without bacterial effects. Diacetyl is a key contributor to unpleasant odors emanated from the axillae, feet and head regions, produced by resident skin bacteria. According to the authors, the results obtained in this study provide new insight that can contribute to the development of effective deodorant agents [94]. Upadhyay et al. have demonstrated that a petroleum extract of Glycyrrhiza glabra promotes hair grow since treated animals developed longer, denser, anagenic hair and took less time for hair cover the denuded skin of female rats, compared to control and minoxidil-treated groups [90].

Cosmetics 2015, 2 56 3.8. Vitis Vinifera Vitis vinifera is also known as wine grape, European grape and grapevine. Phenols are the third most abundant constituent in grapes. The total extractable phenolics in grapes are present at about 10% in the pulp, 60%–70% in the seeds and 28%–35% in the grape skin [95]. Vitis vinifera grape seed extract is reported to function as anti-caries agent, antidandruff, antifungal, antimicrobial, antioxidant, flavouring, light stabilizer and sunscreen agent [96]. Data obtained from Food and Drug Administration in 2012 reported the use of Vitis vinifera grape seed extract in 495 cosmetic formulations. Also, Vitis vinifera grape fruit extract and leaf extract have been used in 238 and 80 cosmetic formulations, respectively [97]. The grape seed hydroethanolic extract is rich in polyphenols (proanthocyanidins). The antioxidant and scavenging activities of proanthocyanidins had been reported by many authors. Proanthocyanidins potentially improve chloasma in a short period of administration. Yamakoshi et al. reported the oral administration of a proanthocyanidin rich extract from grape seeds for one year reduced effectively the hyperpigmentation of women with chloasma [98]. 3.9. Crataegus Monogyna Jacq The inflorescences of hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna Jacq.) have long been known in herbal medicine in Europe, Asia, North Africa and America. The flowers are white or rose and its fruits when matures are red [99]. Crataegus monogyna Jacq. is one of the species highly recommended in folk medicine and the “berries” are consumed by shepherds, hunters and children, because they are considered “healthy” and nutritious [100]. Hawthorn was first mentioned as a drug in the Tang-Ben-Cao (659A.D.), the world’s earliest officially published pharmacopoeia [101]. In Portuguese, Pharmacopoeia 9 described the use of leaves, flowers and fruits (berries) [102]. Pharmacological and toxicological studies have demonstrated that the consumption of hawthorn fruits is associated with long-term medicinal benefits to cardiovascular function with little side effects [103]. During the nineteenth and early twentieth century, preparations containing the fruit, leaves and hawthorn flowers were available across Europe in single preparations or in combination with other plant extracts. The preparations can contain various constituents in different amounts, such as phenolic compounds, according to the harvest time, plant species and extraction method [104]. Furthermore, some studies also demonstrated hawthorn extract moderates antimicrobial activity [105]. The main applications described in cosmetic and dermatological field concern creams and lotions with glycolic extract of the flowers, with toning action on the skin tissue. These products have effect in aged skin and in combating wrinkles [99]. Many studies indicate that hawthorn fruits are a rich source of antioxidants (flavonoids, such as chlorogenic acid, epicatechin, hyperoside, isoquercitrin, protocatechuic acid, quercetin, rutin and ursolic acid) [100,103,106–109]. The structure of these hawthorn phenolic compounds is characterized by two adjacent hydroxyl groups. An antioxidant, in general, should be an excellent donor of electrons or protons, and the resulting free radical should be relatively stable. The two adjacent hydroxyl groups of hawthorn fruits are theoretically more vulnerable to loss a proton and the resulting free radical is stable

Cosmetics 2015, 2 57 due to resonance delocalization. The thorn-apple is also rich in pigments such as anthocyanidins which also contribute to the antioxidant activity [103]. In our group, a thorn-apple hydroethanolic extract was developed, incorporated in a semisolid dermatological base and its efficacy on skin application evaluated, demonstrating promising abilities regarding skin hydration (unpublished work). 3.10. Pinus Pinaster The bark of trees is a rich source of green chemicals. The accumulation of polyphenols in the bark results from plant evolution as a response to biotic and abiotic stresses [110]. Pycnogenol® is a nutritional supplement which represents a standardized bark extract from the French maritime pine (Pinus pinaster Ait.) in compliance with US pharmacopoeial requirements [111]. The extract is standardized to contain 70% ± 5% procyanidins, oligomers of catechin and epicatechin subunits, taxifolin and a range of phenolic acids, derivatives of benzoic and cinnamic acids [112]. Therefore, Pycnogenol® contains a variety of bio-active molecules known to exert beneficial effects on skin cells in vitro or in animal studies. Previous studies on Pycnogenol® effects on human skin indicate this supplement improves human skin conditions including chronic venous insufficiency and skin inflammation [113]. Furthermore, Pycnogenol® protects against oxidative stress in several cell systems by doubling the intracellular synthesis of anti-oxidative enzymes and by acting as a potent scavenger of free radicals [114]. Picnogenol® has attracted special attention in the field of Dermatology with regard to its application in cosmetic formulations. Some studies evidence that Pycnogenol® supplementation benefits human skin by increasing skin hydration and skin elasticity and show that these effects are most likely due to an increased synthesis of extracellular matrix molecules such as hyaluronic acid and possibly collagen [111,115]. In summary, it can be concluded that wood is also a promising source of natural antioxidants and in the future may have added value in the cosmetology industry. 4. Conclusions Nowadays, consumers have an increasing interest in natural products, namely in the case of cosmetic products. On the other hand, several works refer to the advantages of plant extracts, such as antioxidant capacity, tyrosinase inhibition and antimicrobial activity, which can be beneficial for attenuation and prevention of various skin conditions. The present review refers to some plant species whose extracts have been evaluated, and the potential advantages demonstrated. However, few works that focused on the development of formulations for skin application containing these extracts were reported. So, scientific studies aiming at the development, evaluation and application of such extracts in topical formulations and that simultaneously meet consumer concerns are a challenge. Given the inherent economic potential in the exploitation of natural resources in ecosystems, plant extracts can be used in cosmetic science in order to beautify and maintain the physiological balance of the human skin. On the other hand, compared to synthetic cosmetic ingredients, herbal products are mild and biodegradable, exhibiting low toxicity. Furthermore, several by-products result from the plant processing industry (for example food industry) and represent a great disposal problem for industries. However, some of these by-products could also be a promising source of compounds with biological

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Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare

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Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare

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concerns about synthetic ingredients/chemical substances. The

use of plants for medicinal purposes is as old as humanity and

plants were the main source of all personal care and cosmetics

before the use of synthetic substances with similar properties

[2]. Additionally, the use of plant extracts in skin care products

is highlighted by consumer demands, which are increasingly

concerned with buying ecologically friendly products. Natural

skin care products improved skin tone, texture, and appearance

by delivering nutrients necessary for healthy skin. Herbal extracts

are primarily added to the skincare formulations due to several

associated properties such as antioxidant capacity, pigmentation

inhibition, and antimicrobial activity, which can be beneficial

for attenuation and prevention of various skin conditions [3,4].

Cosmetics alone are not sufficient to take care of skin conditions;

it requires association of active natural ingredients to repair the

damage and to inhibit the ageing of the skin. Herbal skincare

and cosmetics have gained much popularity and claimed to have

efficacy and intrinsic acceptability due to routine use in daily life

and avoid the side effects which are commonly seen in synthetic

products. On the other hand, compared to synthetic skincare and

cosmetic ingredients, herbal products are mild and biodegradable,

exhibiting low toxicity. Natural plant molecules remain particularly

interesting for new studies and a number of researches carrying

in different parts of the world on medicinal plants to developed

newer herbal skincare and cosmetic products having lesser side

effects and rich sources of beneficial compounds [1,2]. In the

last few years, there has been an exponential growth in the field

of herbal skincare and cosmetic products and they are gaining

popularity both in developing and developed countries. Given

the inherent economic potential in the exploitation of natural

resources in ecosystems, plant extracts, essential oils, vegetable

oils and bioactive complexes exhibit a huge potential to be used in

skincare and cosmetic products in order to beautify and maintain

the physiological and biochemical balance and healthy condition

of the human skin.

The personal care product category remains the largest

category in the beauty business and its global value sales will

reach $630 billion by 2017. The general market demand growth

rate for natural and organic skincare products alone is growing

faster than the overall market growth rate. The global demand for

organic personal care products is expected to reach $13.2 billion

by 2018. Health awareness around the globe drives the natural

and organic personal care product market, igniting a major

shift from synthetic to organic personal care products. Organic

personal care products in North America represented about 35%

of the global organic personal market in 2014 and the natural

cosmetics market hit $30 billion last year, predicted to have an

annual growth rate of 10% until 2019. There is a noticeable

increase in organic personal care products in European countries,

China and India. Strong growth in distribution channels and the

number of new product launches in developed as well as emerging

economies is expected to trigger growth of this industry as well.

Chemicals and synthetic ingredients, used in many skincare and

cosmetic products, can cause a variety of undesirable side effects,

especially for people with sensitive skin and potential allergic

reactions. The overwhelming array of synthetic and potentially

harmful ingredients used in skincare and cosmetic products

(health hazards associated phthalates, parabens, petroleum

based chemicals, aluminum salts, etc.) are main reason for freshly

produced organic and natural skincare, based on innovative

and up to date multifunctional and effective formulations which

include products with anti-aging, skin lightening and super

moisturizing benefits. Large corporations are also attempting

to follow the natural trend, due to consumer requirements. The

most recent news is that the first time Procter and Gamble (P&G)

has published a list of 140 fragrances which they no longer use in

their products, which, according to the Environmental Working

Group (EWG), are linked to endocrine disruption, reproductive

toxicity and cancer [5].

Volume 4 Issue 3 - 2016


Phytoceuticals International TM & Novotek Global

SolutionsTM, London, Ontario, Canada


Delizioso Skincare Inc., London, Ontario, Canada


Neuropharmacology Research Laboratory, Department of

Pharmaceutics, Indian Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu

University), India

*Corresponding author: Vikas Kumar, Neuropharmacology

Research Laboratory, Department of Pharmaceutics, Indian

Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu University), India,


Received: March 11, 2016 | Published: April 07, 2016

Short communication

Pharm Pharmacol Int J 2016, 4(3): 00072

Short Communication

According to American Academy of Dermatology (www., skin comprises the largest organ

of human body with over 20 vital physiological functions. Skin

which is a physical barrier to withstand pressure and trauma,

recognize sensations and pain, protects the body from the

external environment such as pollution and radiation, sunlight,

keeping out harmful microbes and chemicals, and helps to

regulate temperature, fluid balance and excretion, involved in

endocrine function through the production of Cholecalciferol (D3)

by epidermis. Skin care products are the medicinal preparations

intended to be placed in contact with the various external parts

of the human body that manifest beneficial topical actions and

provide protection against degenerative skin conditions [1].

Preparations of natural ingredients have been traditionally used

for centuries for skin care purposes; nowadays they are becoming

more popular in modern formulations due to consumers

Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare 2/3 Copyright:

©2016 Emerald et al.

Citation: Emerald M, Emerald A, Emerald L, Kumar V (2016) Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare. Pharm Pharmacol Int J 4(3): 00072. DOI:


In order to create a natural and/or organic formulation,

plant derived bioactive compounds from essential oils, cold

pressed vegetable oils, natural resins, extracts and other natural;

raw materials are combined with plant derived emulsifiers,

surfactants, humectants, pigments and other ingredients [6].

Taking into consideration the huge variety of the market supply

of organic plant derived ingredients which are often adulterated

with synthetic or toxic intermediates. It is important to choose

top quality, analytically tested ingredients from a reliable supplier,

such as companies proven to follow a quality over quantity

concept: Symrise, Firmenich, Citrus & Allied Essences, Sabinsa,

Lebermuth, Phytoceuticals International, Liberty Natural, and

others. Finding a good quality sustainable source supplier with

established quality assurance procedures and services, as well as

clean processing, which eliminates cross contamination, is very

important and is sometimes the biggest challenge for natural

personal care and cosmetic companies.

A huge impact is done to the natural personal care industry

by companies who purchase and use various natural and

organic ingredients in their products and market the brand as

‘natural’, though not always containing only natural and organic

ingredients. Some of those brands include but are not limited to

Eminence, L’Occitane en Provence, Aveda, Burt’s Bee, Organicare,

Aubrey organics, Intelligent nutrients, NaturaCosméticos S.A.,

Beeseline, Tata Harper Skincare, Dr. Haushka Skincare, Dr. Murad

Skincare, Dr. Emerald Skincare, Delizioso Skincare & Cosmetics,

Juice Beauty, 100% Pure and many others. The quality of such

marketed organic and natural personal care products is dependent

on the quality of natural plant derived ingredient supply, many of

which are certified by organic certification bodies such as USDA,

Sanoflore, NOP, QAI and others, as well as the percentage of

natural and organic content in the personal care product formula

itself. UK, Germany, France, Italy and Belgium consolidated the

regulations under COSMOS (one regulatory body). In Japan,

cosmeceuticals are regulated as quasi-drugs [7]. Organic and

Sustainable Industry Standards (OASIS) ‘made with organic’ must

contain 70% minimum organic content, while organic requires

85%, but the requirement increased 95% in 2012. According

to a new obtained standard, the Natural Products Association

(NPA) recognize product as natural only if it contains minimum

of 95% of ingredients from natural sources [8-10]. There is strong

trend for regulation and proper testing of the natural and organic

personal care products which is expected to ensure the quality,

properties and corresponding shelf life [11].

In spite of the availability of excellent quality natural plant

derived ingredients, manufacturers of organic personal care

products are still facing some serious challenges. Microbial

contamination in personal care, skincare and cosmetic products

lead to instability such as product separation, discoloration, and

formation of gasses and odors. Non-availability of the proper

type of natural preservatives effective for all the spectrum of the

microorganisms (gram positive and gram negative), fungus and

viruses, which can guarantee a prolonged shelf life without toxic

side effects is one of the most challenging problems which natural

personal care products face. Natural personal care products

are often made in large batches and stand in storage and/or

shelves for an extended period of time prior to reaching the end

consumer, which can therefore lead the product to contain higher

concentrations of microorganisms if not properly preserved. This

is why many consumers prefer freshly ‘made to order’ products

when choosing natural personal care. Some companies that

market their products as freshly made to order include but are

not limited to: Lush Cosmetics, Delizioso Skincare, Beeseline and

Dr. Emerald Skincare.

The nutricosmetic companies (Perricone, Borba, Glowelle, and

others) which combine diet supplements and nutritional support

routine along with skin care products containing vitamins,

fatty acids, hyaluronic acid, alpha-lipoic acid and bio active

botanicals are oriented for a great systemic result, better health

and beauty, promote youthfulness by targeting and reversing

specific physiological and cellular processes leading to premature

aging. Bio botanicals usually include ingredients promoting

skin health, have anti-inflammatory properties and promote

circulation, cellular vitality and regenerative mechanisms. The

Natural Marketing Institute (NMI) report published in 2007

demonstrated that personal natural products segment is also

exponentially growing for men, and also includes a cosmeceutical

range [12]. There are quite a few natural skincare brands for

men who contain great plant derived ingredients, such as RSVP’s,

Bulldog, Intelligent Nutrients, Naturopathica, Weleda, Jack Black,

Dr. Emerald Skincare for men, Dr. Bronners products, and others.

There is also a significant trend in natural products for babies,

which includes bath and body care products, as well as skin

actives and sunscreens [11].

There is a large international demand for the development

of anti-aging, UV protective, whitening and extra moisturizing

natural skincare products. The anti-aging skin care products

trend is moving towards developing new botanical ingredients

and intermediates targeting specific needs, based on discoveries,

and advanced technologies [13]. In case of anti aging products,

the age-related decline in skin regenerative cells is a result of

homeostatic imbalance, cutaneous disorders, environmental

factors [14,15]. Skin exposure to UV radiations cause oxidative

stress, inflammation, wrinkling, skin cancer, erythema, edema,

sunburn and photoaging [16] and can lead to generation of toxic

compounds and reactive free radicals, which can cause damages

to DNA in nuclei and mitochondria, deterioration of membranes,

lipids and proteins in skin-resident stem/progenitor and

following cell dysfunctions [11,18]. There are quite a few natural

compounds, which can prevent from UV damage: α-tocopherol

which prevents UVA- and UVB-induced glutathione loss and

reduce induction of DNA damage by UVB [19,20]. β-Carotene

which inhibits free radicals and cause higher resistance to

immunosuppression after exposure to UV light [21]; lycopene

which absorb light in the UV range and increase the toughness

of the skin [22,23]. Lutein which prevent extracellular matrix

breakdown and prevents skin from UV damage [24]; flavonoids

such as isorhamnetin, quercetin, kaempferol which significantly

decreased erythema developed after UVB irradiation [25], and

green tea polyphenols which reduce UV-induced p53 expression

and keratinocytes apoptosis and protect from DNA damage [26],

and others. Among the other natural plant derived compounds,

polyphenols (for example from green and black tea) are shown

to promote the degradation of melanin causing depigmentation

effect on animal skin in vitro [24].

Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare 3/3 Copyright:

©2016 Emerald et al.

Citation: Emerald M, Emerald A, Emerald L, Kumar V (2016) Perspective of Natural Products in Skincare. Pharm Pharmacol Int J 4(3): 00072. DOI:


The research challenges in natural personal products trend

are including creation of a perfect ratio between the natural

plant derived ingredients and bio actives, which will provide

great product absorption, proper moisture balance, effective and

improved cellular metabolism including hormonal and chemical

skin reactions, efficient hydration, proper exfoliation, effective

circulation and cellular nutritional support, enhanced lymphatic

functions and detoxification of the skin.

There are no doubts that global natural and organic personal

care products market is growing, significantly expanding and by

Grand View research Inc, is expected to reach USD 15.98 billion

by 2020 [27]. North American and International companies

are undertaking strategic initiatives to increase presence and

percentage of the natural skincare and cosmetic products on the

Global market. Instead of synthetic products, North American and

International consumers prefer organic and natural non toxic and

environment friendly personal care products which definitely

represent the major stream in personal care and cosmetic



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