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China Beauty Expo preview: Opportunities through advanced science in beauty

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

China Beauty Expo preview: Opportunities through advanced science in beauty
In the run-up to the leading event dedicated to advanced scientific techniques and insights in China, in co-operation with IFSCC, we spoke with Claudie Willemin Scientific Editor at International Federation of Societies of Cosmetic Chemists (IFSCC) and Claudia Bonfiglioli General Manager Informa Beauty to find out what we can expect from the event and the market in 2018.

Emphasising the prevalence of advanced science in cosmetics, the China Beauty Expo’s (CBE) 23rd edition will take place between 22nd-24th May 2018 at Shanghai New International Expo Centre.

In recent years, the IFSCC has been more active in China, meeting Chinese scientists to introduce and present IFSCC to. In order to spread this information, in 2015, IFSCC decided to join forces with the leading China Beauty Expo to confirm an annual scientific forum during the show.

Discussing the current Chinese cosmetics market, Claudie Willemin Scientific Editor at International Federation of Societies of Cosmetic Chemists (IFSCC) explained how this goes back to 2011 when “IFSCC saw that the number of Chinese companies had increased drastically”.

The Chinese landscape

“We met a lot of people in the Chinese cosmetics industry including suppliers and academics, and so after hearing their feedback, we decided to collaborate with China Beauty Expo (CBE) to spread cosmetics and science, and ensure optimal scientific standards were applied in China,”​ Willemin went on to say.

“Ever since, the event has become the communication tool to enable the Federation to connect with the scientific community in China.”

As the market is “very rapid” ​with “constant changes”,​ strong investment in R&D and research centres are on the up along with many companies placing their headquarters in China.

Despite this fast-paced environment, many companies still “want to understand more about growing trends, particularly when it comes to differences between generations and the importance of maximising the quality of products created”.

Currently, the “biggest challenge in communicating these trends and scientific developments is the language barrier”,​ however, this is set to transform as the new generation adopts an international focus, Willemin explained.

In the Chinese cosmetics market today, it’s vital to understand the detail and demands of consumers, which CBE hopes to answer by encouraging its industry insiders to visit, see and share.

Skin biology

Biological knowledge of the Chinese skin and Chinese consumer habits are important to lead the development of new concepts for the Chinese market. The results of this deep research will be carried out by Amorepacific, L’Oreal R&D, Shiseido or Pola Cosmetics and Estee Lauder.

Exploring skin biology will be high on the agenda at this year’s advanced science showcase in CBE @ AS&I. Ashland’s approach is one example of this, where oily skin and acne is treated through identifying genes, and using new information to identify innovative ideas. Today, biotechnology has been used to develop ingredients, Willemin observed.  

Colour usage

Colour cosmetics is also another area that is booming in China as consumers are now using a selection of products and enjoying the various styles and looks that colour can create.

“Ten years ago, there was no colour in China. This changed when the fashion and cosmetics worlds collided and the younger generations began to experiment with colour in hair, make up and nails,”​ commented Claudia Bonfiglioli, General Manager, Informa Beauty. “Over the last three years, we have seen the boom of OEM in colour cosmetics."

Safety claims

When it comes to labelling and packaging, biological knowledge and how we define new targets is a priority. Formulators are seeking more efficient active ingredients and biological approaches that highlight cutting-edge methods.  

The approved in-vitro tests to access safety is a strong tendency today. These in-vitro methods can also optimise clinic tests or support claims for understanding the behaviour of ingredients or cosmetic products. In turn, these help to define new approaches or new claims, for instance.

IFSCC in industry

When it comes to IFSCC’s role in the global cosmetics chemistry, the authority of cosmetics science accepts that it does have an international influence, Willemin commented: “Our aim is to advance cosmetics science and to help members elevate their professional knowledge in science and technology around the world.”

Its annual events and the presence of Congress to educate its members on cosmetics science have been designed to support of this overall objective.

With a total of 16000 global members and 48 associations from 72 countries spanning all corners of the globe, the IFSCC hopes to help countries of all sizes, developments and economic positioning to reach the highest understanding and accumulation of scientific knowledge when it comes to the cosmetics industry.

The Society of Central and West Africa of Cosmetology is the most recent addition to the IFSCC, having joined in 2016 to increase its awareness of science in cosmetics.

“Society members are offered a tailored educational programme, which varies from one to three years, to help them to utilise advanced science in R&D, formulations and product launches,” added Willemin.

The annual IFSCC Congress has been designed to spread science in cosmetics to support this overall objective

After three years of developing this forum in collaboration with IFSCC, global scientists from Estee Lauder, L'Oreal R&I, Shiseido, Amorepacific, Sunjin, Ashland, Pola, Merck, Greentech and BioAlternatives will share and discuss the hottest topics stated above at China Beauty Expo on 23rd May 2018.

CBE 2018

Welcoming an anticipated 3,500 exhibitors through its doors, the event will explore new advancements in skin biology, alternative methods, treatments, colour cosmetics and sun care.

The second day of the event will look at the regulatory landscape in China, with a presentation from L'Oréal on alternative non-animal cosmetics testing methods.

For more information, visit China Beauty Expo's website​ and pre-registration​ page. 

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