Korea plows ahead with some 'serious brainpower' in cosmeceuticals
According to OECD statistics, market-leading scientific research is the foundation of Korea’s top industries. Indeed, the country is world champion when it comes to R&D investment (4.4% of GDP in 2012).
In fact, trends analyst Nica Lewis says that thanks to a surge in patent registration in 2013, South Korea is now among the top five in the world for trademarks.
And when it comes to personal care and beauty, this hefty R&D spend yields cutting-edge advances in ingredients and formulation – from nanotechnology to stem-cell related actives and growth factors.
The report appears on in-cosmetics Korea’s blog page, which is a new personal care ingredients show to be held in Seoul from 15-16 June 2015, where 100+ international suppliers will showcase their products to Korean cosmetic manufacturers and distributors.
Korea's music and tech superstars have conquered the world and the march of BB creams and cushion foundations seems unstoppable.
The cosmeceutical segment is particularly coming to the forefront and Korea has a wealth of these products and doctor branded skin care.
Favourites include Dr Jart+, IOPE, IsaKnox, Dr Pharm, Dr G and Dorissiderm, many of which Lewis says, are backed by medical doctors or created by dermatologists.
Companies like Nutrex and YCellBio Med are also straddling the cosmeceutical and pharmaceutical territory. The former has patented a protein synthesis technology and produces a dozen growth factors, including VEGF and KEGF for hair care applications.
"The latter specialises in platelet rich plasma for dermatology and ophthalmology. PnP Biopharm is active in oligopeptides and growth factors. Many of these high tech ingredients feed directly into these type of formulas," Nica explains.
Seoul is notorious for its sweltering summers which means hydrating mists and cooling masks are must-haves to beat the heat. Brands have taken the trend for cold-pressed ingredients a step further with refrigeration technology.
LG’s Frostine, introduced three years ago, claims to be the first refrigerated 5°C skin care line and Prangenidin uses refrigeration technology in its anti-ageing line.
Innovation in cosmetics
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