Tag Archives: ingredient


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.


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.”


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.


Isohexadecane is part of the paraffin or alkane family of molecules. Alkanes are acyclic saturated hydrocarbon, i.e. molecules made of Hydrogen and Carbon atoms, not forming cycles, only with simple bonds between these atoms.

More precisely, isohexadecane is an isoparaffin, a branched chain hydrocarbon. Isohexadecane contains 16 Carbon atoms.


According to one of its suppliers INEOS, used in cosmetic products, Isohexadecane is a clear, colorless, and odorless liquid providing high emolliency, ease of spreadability and moisturizing properties. It imparts a non-drying feel on the skin and has a light, smooth feel with excellent cleansing characteristics. Applications for use include: face and eye make-up cleansers, skin care, sun care, color cosmetics, bath oils and foundation creams.



This association of ingredients corresponds to Ashland Lubrajel Oil.

According to Ashland, Lubrajel hydrogels are hydrophilic and consist of water, humectants and a polymer as a thickening agent. The solvent and humectant molecules are bound to the polymeric network, resulting in a structured system with increased viscosity.

Lubrajels are rheology modifiers. Ashland offers several versions, with varying viscosities, from the highly viscous Lubrajel DV hydrogel used in emulsion stabilization and suspension of compatible materials such as titanium dioxide to Lubrajel Oil hydrogel, an oil-like, low viscosity gel. They are also effective at stabilizing emulsions in various personal care applications.

Lubrajel Oil (Glycerin (and) Glyceryl Acrylate/Acrylic Acid Copolymer (and) PVM/MA Copolymer) is water-soluble clear gel. According to Ashland, “it is an emollient matrix that imparts excellent lubricity and provides skin care products with superb spreadability”. It is used for moisturization and emulsion stabilization.


Acrylic Acid/VP Crosspolymer is a thickener supplied by Ashland under the tradename UltraThix™ P-100 polymer. It is a cross-linked copolymer of vinyl pyrrolidone (VP) and acrylic acid.

Acrylic Acid/VP Copolymer

It is claimed by Ashland to be a multi-benefit, patented rheology modifier that delivers an array of benefits, such as shear-thinning rheological properties with yield value and positive sensory perception.

According to Ashland, it offers emulsion stabilization, reduces tack and improves aesthetics of hydroalcoholic sprays, and enhances skin feel properties.


Chondrus crispus—commonly called Irish moss or carrageen moss (Irish carraigín, “little rock”)—is a species of red algae which grows abundantly along the rocky parts of the Atlantic coast of Europe and North America. Chondrus crispus is an industrial source of carrageenan.

Chondrus Crispus

Carrageenans are a family of linear sulphated polysaccharides. All carrageenans are high-molecular-weight polysaccharides made up of repeating galactose units and 3,6 anhydrogalactose (3,6-AG), both sulfated and nonsulfated. The units are joined by alternating α-1,3 and β-1,4 glycosidic linkages. There are three main varieties of carrageenan, which differ in their degree of sulphation.


As explained by CP Kelco about its range on Carrageenan thickeners for personal care, by using the appropriate carrageenan product, the formulator can create textures ranging from free-flowing liquids to solid gels. Carrageenan products can be used to create rheological profiles ranging from free-flowing liquids to thixotropic liquid gels and self-supporting solid gels with a wide range of textures, setting temperatures and melting temperatures. With a single carrageenan product, a range of viscosities and gel strengths can be obtained by adjusting other ingredients in the formulation.

  • Kappa carrageenan forms firm gels in the presence of ions.
  • Iota carrageenan forms elastic gels and thixotropic fluids in the presence of ions.
  • Lambda carrageenan forms viscous, non-gelling solutions.


Dimethiconol is a non volatile, high viscosity, hydroxy-terminated polydimethylsiloxane gum. To facilitate its use, it is usually offered by supplier as a blend with a liquid silicone oil (e.g. Dimethicone or Cyclopentasiloxane).


Xiameter PMX 1503 from Dow Corning is a blend of Dimethicone and Dimethiconol. It is claimed to be film forming and non occlusive, with long-lasting, wash-off resistant benefits. It is mainly use in skincare as it imparts a silky, lubricious feel.