Water activity plays a crucial role in cosmetic formulations, affecting both their stability and microbial growth. In the quest for effective preservation strategies and enhanced skin barrier function, Cosphaderm® Absolute emerges as a game-changer. This revolutionary blend of humectant actives offers multiple benefits for the skin and formulation alike. Here we will delve into the features, functions and versatility of Cosphaderm® Absolute, a pH-independent, clear and colourless liquid which is COSMOS- and NATRUE-approved.
Formulating made easy
Cosphaderm® Absolute is designed to simplify the formulation process. Its clear, colourless liquid form makes it suitable for a wide range of formulation types. The blend can be easily incorporated into the water phase, ensuring convenient application. Moreover, its pH independence adds to its versatility, allowing for seamless integration into various cosmetic products. By providing an efficient method to reduce water activity, Cosphaderm® Absolute reduces the reliance on antimicrobials for preservation.
Functions for the skin
The skin serves as our body’s first line of defence against external threats. A healthy skin barrier is essential for maintaining optimal moisture levels and safeguarding against environmental factors. Cosphaderm® Absolute supports the skin barrier by promoting hydration and enhancing its functionality. This blend contains sodium lactate and betaine, which are part of the natural moisturising factors (NMF), responsible for maintaining skin moisture. Additionally, the multifunctional propanediol not only aids in solubilisation but also enhances the moisturising effect. By significantly lowering water activity, Cosphaderm® Absolute ensures effective antimicrobial action while simultaneously improving the skin barrier, offering a comprehensive preservation solution in line with industry trends.
The skin barrier-enhancing effect
To validate the skin barrier-enhancing effect of Cosphaderm® Absolute, a study was conducted involving 14 volunteers. Over a two-week period, the volunteers applied a basic O/W emulsion containing 20% Cosphaderm® Absolute twice daily. The results were remarkable, with skin hydration improving by 45.6%. Additionally, transepidermal water loss (TEWL), a key parameter for assessing skin barrier function, reduced by 11.4%. These findings emphasise the blend’s ability to enhance the skin’s natural protective barrier and promote healthy, well-cared skin.
Antimicrobial effect through water activity reduction
Water activity (aw) represents the “free,” unbound water within a formulation that can support microbial growth. By reducing the availability of unbound water, Cosphaderm® Absolute impedes the growth of microorganisms, offering antimicrobial protection. The blend combines sodium lactate, propanediol, and betaine in an optimal ratio to achieve efficient aw reduction without compromising sensory properties. Numerous challenge tests have validated the antimicrobial efficacy of Cosphaderm® Absolute, making it an ideal choice for formulators seeking mild, skin-friendly and effective preservation.
Pure water has an aw value of 1. Adding small, hydrophilic molecules binds water on the basis of intermolecular interactions and reduces the aw value accordingly. In order to reduce the aw value of a skincare emulsion to such an extent that microorganisms are impaired in their ability to grow, high amounts of water-binding substances are needed. However, such high amounts exceed the recommended concentrations of individual ingredients and can have a negative impact on the formulation‘s sensory properties.
The antimicrobial effect of Cosphaderm® Absolute has been proven in numerous challenge tests. It can be excellently combined with other Cosphaderm® Multifunctionals, guaranteeing mild and skin-friendly, yet remarkably good antimicrobial protection for formulations. Here you can see examples of the excellent results obtained in a challenge test:
Using Cosphaderm® Absolute in various formulations
Apart from its skin barrier-strengthening and antimicrobial properties, Cosphaderm® Absolute provides additional benefits for both skin and hair, owing to the properties of its components. Sodium lactate, betaine, and propanediol synergistically contribute to the formulation’s stability and sensory characteristics. Cosphaderm® Absolute can be effortlessly incorporated into the water phase of cosmetic formulations, making it a versatile ingredient suitable for a wide range of products.
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Cosphaderm® Absolute presents a ground-breaking solution for formulators seeking to reduce water activity and enhance skin barrier function. With its easy application, pH independence, and versatile formulation compatibility, it simplifies the formulation process. By effectively reducing water activity, Cosphaderm® Absolute offers a natural preservation strategy, minimising the need for antimicrobials. Its demonstrated skin barrier-enhancing effects and antimicrobial properties make it an invaluable asset in meeting the demands of the cosmetics industry. For more information and comprehensive details, please contact us today.