The dominance of K-beauty in the early 2010s contributed significantly to the popularity of ceramides, with South Korean brands like Dr Jart touting its ability to strengthen the skin barrier while keeping the skin supple and moisturised.
Speaking to CosmeticsDesign-Asia, Silvana Estarita-Jäde, senior marketing manager of active ingredients at Evonik, noted a resurgence of ceramides in skin care.
While the use of ceramides has widely been associated with products for sensitive skin, there is growing interest in it as a healthy ageing skin care ingredient for its skin regenerative prowess.
“The best way to go in the direction of well-ageing is to protect your skin barrier right from the beginning. We acknowledge that we all age, that’s not going to change, so we now want to age beautifully,” said Estarita-Jäde.
“The definition of ageing is getting broader. Previously it was about fine lines, deep wrinkles – that was ageing. But we’re evolving towards more holistic ageing, meaning you have to take care of yourself and the health of your skin – this is what the market is requesting. We can see it from the growth of derma cosmetics as well, where there’s a focus on the health of your skin next to ageing.
The ‘perfect approach’ to well-ageing
According to Estarita-Jäde, the company has received more requests for ceramides, notably in countries such as China and Japan.
She explained that as an essential component of the skin, there is a high acceptance of ceramides as a skin care ingredient among consumers.
“Our skin barrier is made up of ceramides, 40% of our skin barrier contains ceramides. The idea of applying on the skin ingredients that you already have in your skin, and that you'd normally lose with age is like the perfect approach. Customers want this complexity that we have in our skin in a product to target to have the most performance as possible.”
She also noted that the company conducted a consumer study across eight different countries and the findings showed that ceramides had a high acceptance rate of at least 70% in all the markets.
At this year’s ingredients trade show, in-cosmetics Global, the German firm debuted Skinmimics Pro MB, one of its latest ceramide ingredients. It contains seven skin ceramides, combining skin-identical long-chain ceramides and short bioactive ceramides.
The firm believes this ingredient is well-placed to tap into the well-ageing trends in Asia, where consumers can be extremely demanding about skin care.
“You have this extreme push for activity and performance that's coming from Asia in general,” said Estarita-Jäde.
Additionally, she highlighted opportunities in derma cosmetics and in the indie beauty space.
“Derma cosmetics is a good fit, but I think there are a lot of independent brands that would like to identify themselves with a power ingredient, and the power of seven ceramides.”