“Our R&D is the engine driving new solutions in hair, oral and skin care applications. Working as an extension to the R&D teams of our customers around the world, we’re helping them solve market-specific challenges,” Vito Consiglio, Vice President, Personal and Home Care, Ashland said.
Ashland invests in the development of speciality ingredients for the APAC market and is supported by formulation science, measurement science and consumer science.
As the use of natural ingredients continues to lead product development in the region, pairing these natural formulations with scientific R&D processes is a key area that Ashland and other brands continue to focus on.
“We have consumer science laboratories in Mumbai and Shanghai to understand the consumer experience and expert evaluators to quantify the performance of our technologies in personal care formulations,” emphasised Consiglio.
New product: Harmoniance biofunctional launch
On October 31st 2016, Ashland launched Harmoniance biofunctional, a natural and multifunctional product with anti-ageing benefits for face and body applications.
Combining three of APAC’s most prevalent and popular trends, Harmoniance biofunctional appeals to consumers seeking natural multifunctional skin care products that also have anti-ageing properties.
Harmoniance biofunctional, a product of Ashland’s Dr Michael Koganov and his colleagues, uses Zeta Fraction technology, which employs the theories of three Nobel prize-winning scientists and involves recent advances in physical chemistry and life sciences.
Using its proprietary Zeta Fraction technology, the personal care manufacturer accesses and utilises the biologically active benefits, amplifies the efficacy and refines the usability of the of the Sacred Lotus plant in Harmoniance.
The process, which is solvent-free, begins with the separation of live plants into a stable intracellular colloidal dispersion and fibre-enriched material. The technology successfully isolates biologically active complexes and compounds by a reproducible and sustainable process. Then, this dispersion is separated into different fractions.
Its Zeta Fraction technology enables Ashland to utilise the whole living plant including its leaves, flowers and roots.
“Processing the whole living Sacred Lotus plant through proprietary fractionation to obtain a unique, powerful biofunctional affords the personal care industry access to the actual nature and benefits of an extraordinary plant,” said Joel Mantelin, Vice President business development - biofunctionals, Ashland.
Harmoniance biofunctional contains patented ingredient including phenolic compounds, carbohydrates, free amino acids, electrolytes, and microelements, and is applicable to the anti-ageing skin care applications market.
Scientific evaluations of Harmoniance also indicate that this biofunctional is applicable in formulations to brighten skin tone, enhance skin texture, improve skin contouring, address the appearance of sensitive skin, and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
“Hydration, barrier integrity, skin elasticity, contouring, and tone are some of the most important aspects of beautiful, alluring skin.”
Sustainability: a top priority
In the APAC region, sustainability in skin care remains a considerable market and its importance looks set to continue in the years ahead.
Companies are, therefore, searching for raw materials that fit the criteria of sustainability, from the field to processing, as well as the actual use in finished products.
The sustainability credentials of these raw materials need to be known at the outset as they are integral to the design and commercialisation of products.
“Sustainable skin care requires the use of plant-based ingredients that provide the assurance of ecological balance, a continuation of biodiversity, and a low carbon footprint,” said Nelson Corda, General Manager, Asia Pacific.
Ashland is investing in the inclusion of polymers and biofunctionals in its products to use multifunctional ingredients that create multifunctional beauty and cosmetics products.
“In an era of sustainability, new personal care product forms, and personal care regimens, a premium is placed on formulations that deliver, in one application, primary and secondary performance characteristics,” said Linda Foltis, Vice President of care specialities research and development.
Ashland highlighted the importance of multifunctional ingredients in a recent press release emphasising their ability to “allow formulators to improve the usability, profitability and sustainability of finished products”.
“This requires a backwards integration to ingredient design and forward integration to long-term market needs. Ashland’s R&D programme is substantially organised to develop and validate ingredients with multifunctional benefits in skin, hair, and oral care.”