“[The] potential is unlimited,” said Fabrice Lefevre, innovation and marketing director at Givaudan Active Beauty.
He added: “We screen lots of microalgae in our lab located in a protected area in France and much more will come soon from this platform to the market,”
Blending beauty and wellness
Lefevre believes the company’s latest marine biotech-based ingredient, Sensityl, is a good example of how microalgae can change the beauty industry.
Givaudan claims that Sensityl is the first ingredient of its kind that can positively influence mood, thanks to its soothing benefits.
“Sensityl will revolutionise the future beauty market by giving shape to products acting simultaneously on skin and mood. So far the mood dimension from cosmetic products was mainly driven by their texture and fragrances,” said Lefevre.
The ingredient is extracted from microalgae which the company grows in seawater in Brittany, France, where Givaudan’s Marine Biotechnology Centre of Excellence is based.
“We grow the microalgae in seawater with sunlight and they use atmospheric CO2 to grow. This is extremely sustainable and gives a positive impact on the planet,” said Lefevre.
To determine the efficacy of the ingredient, the company teamed up with internal experts from the Sensory Centre of Excellence in the UK and external non-verbal emotion decoding experts.
“We used specific neurosciences based tests to statistically analyse the emotions of volunteers from the placebo group or from the group receiving the cream with Sensityl after one month.”
Lefevre said the experts were ‘amazed’ by the results of the trial.
“They were able to observe with scientific evidence that a skin care ingredient was able to trigger positive emotions and reduce negative ones. After one month of usage, people felt refreshed, invigorated and were smiling during the interviews. We were able to bottle positivity in a jar.”
Potential of a ‘neurocosmetic’
The firm classifies the ingredient as a ‘neurocosmetic’ because it benefits skin while having neuro-based benefits.
“Sensityl creates a scientific and market breakthrough. By acting on skin microbiome and inflammatory pathways, it offers consumers the possibility to positively change their mood thanks to an active ingredient,” said Leferve.
Leferve said the ingredient could be used in many different personal care products, from skin creams to shampoo.
He added that this gives beauty brands an opportunity to launch new products that can positively affect mood.
“Due to this potential new positioning for cosmetics products, consumers will have new beauty solutions that have benefits on their health and wellbeing without being on medication.”
Leferve also highlighted that Sensityl has a lot of potential for the sensitive skin product segment.
“Having sensitive skin is a serious concern for consumers. They generally feel very negative due to itching redness and its effects on their skin beauty which subsequently affects their self-confidence.”
He elaborated that the skin microbiome of people with psoriasis and atopic dermatitis had lower diversity and Sensityl could help balance and protect the skin’s microflora.
“Sensityl protects the skin microbiome diversity. It prevents skin immune cells recruitment, it decreases the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines while reducing the number of pain receptors in the epidermis.”
Leferve concluded: “As a result, the skin irritation is reduced for 10% of the volunteers who tested it, and their skin reactivity decreases.”