Acetyl Glucosamine has been patented by Estée Lauder in 1999 as an exfoliating agent.

Sold by MMP under the tradename Skin’ential HA, it is claimed to be the natural primary constituent of hyaluronic acid in the skin, essential for skin moisture and skin barrier. This cosmetic grade glucosamine derivative would also have anti-tyrosinase activity.


Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate is a mild surfactant for foaming formulas, with the following properties : foaming effect, wide pH range stability, biodegradability, mild and non-drying for the skin, and a soft after feel.


Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate is a foaming surfactant. Compared to classic Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate is a mild, surfate-free, high-foaming, anionic and non-ethoxylated. It is consequently a good option to avoid SLES in cleansing formulas, but much more expensive.


Actractylodes Lancea is the latin name of a chinese plant called Cang Zhu. Clarins uses an extract from its rhizome.


This extract seems to be very specific to Clarins. They present it in their “herbarium” as follow :

“Cang zhu is a plant that grows in the mountains of northern and central China. It has been used since ancient times in Chinese medicine. The bitter-tasting root can be eaten cooked for its toning benefits and raw to fight water retention. In cosmetics, Clarins Laboratories have demonstrated that through the intermediary of G-protein, the root extract improves the skin’s barrier function.”

We already saw this ingredient in Clarins Vital Light products, also used in the Clarins Double Serum.

According to Chinese medicine, it would have effect on stomach.


The association of Xylitylglucoside / Anhydroxylitol / Xylitol is sold by Seppic under the tradename Aquaxyl. It is patented by Seppic, and claimed to “reinforce the synthesis of essential lipids and proteins involved in the organisation of the corneus layer”. This leaded Seppic to emphasize the 2 following benefits of its active ingredient in moisturization :

  • it “increases reserves and circulation of water” in skin dermis / epidermis
  • it “reinforces skin barrieres” for “anti-dehydration power” in epidermis

These benefits are claimed by Seppic to be visible within 8 and 24 hours.

Aquaxyl is made from glucose and xylitol from vegetable origin.

Seppic summarizes the benefits of its ingredients as “AQUAXYL™ offers the 3D hydration hydraconcept for circulation of moisture throughout all skin layers and boosting of hyaluronic acid. The skin barrier is reinforced in 24 hours by limiting water loss. Results are softer smoother skin in 28 days with normal desquamation and smoothing of fine lines. Also effective for hair moisturization and foaming formula sensory profile.”


Natural oils are generally triglycerides, ie ester derived from glycerol and three fatty acids. Triglycerides are the main constituents of body fat in humans and other animals, as well as vegetable fat. They have a very good compatibility with human skin.

Naturally occuring triglycerides are generally unsaturated, ie one or several Carbon / Carbon bonds are double bonds. For example, the triglycerides of the olive oil are made of two radicals of oleic acid and one of palmitic acid attached to glycerol. Oleic acid has one Carbon/Carbon double bond.

Below, an example of triglyceride with double bonds on the fatty chaines.

Example of Triglyceride

These double bonds are sensitive to oxidation, which turns natural triglycerides rancid. As a consequence, the use of natural triglycerides in cosmetic needs to be balanced with their tendancy to turn rancid, with a typical malodor associated. The solution is often to add anti-oxidants to cosmetic formulations with natural fats, to prevent oxidation and rancid odor.

Another option, to keep the benefits of natural oils (skin feel, emolliency), without the drawback of oxidation, is to go with Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride. This ingredient is a synthetic triglyceride from natural origin (generally Coconut and Palm). This means that the fatty chains and glycerine can be from natural origin, and a chemical reaction is made (esterification) to synthesize the triglyceride. The fatty chains come from Caprylic Acid and Capric Acid, both saturated (ie without double bonds), so resistant to oxidation.

Molecule of Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride :

Example of Triglyceride

Croda is one of the suppliers of Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, under the tradename Crodamol GTCC. It is described as a “fully saturated emollient triester, recommended as an alternative for mineral or vegetable oils in a wide variety of personal care and pharmaceutical applications. Fully saturated triglyceride. Light emollient with good lubricity. Excellent solvent for chemical sunscreens and wetting agent for physical sunscreens.”


Silybum Marianum Seed Oil is an oil extracted from the seeds of Lady Thistle (Chardon-Marie in French).

Silybum Marianum - Lady Thistle

The oil contains Silymarin, a complex mixture of polyphenolic molecules, including Silibinin, the major active constituent of this mixture. It exhibits a number of pharmacological effects, particularly in the liver.

According to one of its suppliers Aldivia, Silymarine is known for its hepatoprotective effect: it acts on the cell membrane, making it difficult for toxins to pass into the cell. In addition, silymarine appears to slow down the lipid peroxidation process, giving a membrane stabilizing effect. Lady thistle oil can be used in all finished cosmetic products. It is used particularly in body and hair care products: creams for damaged and dull skin, massage oils and shampoos for thin and fragile hair.


Isononyl Isononanoate is the ester of isononanoic acid and isononanol alcohol.

Isononyl Isononanoate

It is a highly branched low molecular weight, dry and silky ester that exhibits unique characteristics including extremely low freeze point, low viscosity, good penetrating power, excellent solubility and compatibility in a variety of ingredients such as esters, volatile silicones, mineral and vegetable oils. It acts as a replacement for volatile silicones in antiperspirants where it reduces tackiness and prevents clogging in aerosols and as a resin plasticizer in hair sprays.

In particular is skincare products, it gives them a distinctive velvety feel.