Cosmetics & Personal Care

Let minerals take care

By Dr Carolina Diaz Quijano and Anais Hecker, Omya International AG

Dr Carolina Diaz Quijano and Anais Hecker of Omya International explain how a versatile new mineral with certified organic provena

Dr Carolina Diaz Quijano and Anais Hecker of Omya International explain how a versatile new mineral with certified organic provenance and sustainable credentials is poised to improve colour cosmetics and skin care formulations.
Improving the performance of a formula is no longer enough to ensure successful personal care products. Customers are increasingly seeking out natural and safe ingredients, as well as certified organic provenance and sustainable credentials. Omyaskin, a versatile new mineral, is able not only to improve colour cosmetics and skin care formulations – it also addresses these consumer concerns.
Re-engineering an ancient natural ingredient
Created using a sophisticated, patented technique, Omyaskin is based on high purity limestone from Provence. Starting with Natural Calcium Carbonate (NCC) this new generation ingredient also includes hydroxyapatite. Thereby, particles have excellent porosity and a large surface area, which has many benefits for cosmetics and skin care applications.
One ingredient for several applications
Externally, Omyaskin has a lamellar surface structure, while the core consists of a network of interconnected pores (pictured). These qualities enable Omyaskin particles to improve the effectiveness of end products and additionally ease the production process. For example, they can absorb oil and water as well as enhancing viscosity and providing the final application with a silky feel. Compared to any other mineral – including tapioca starch, kaolin and even its own components when used individually – Omyaskin 100-OG particles absorb four times more oil. Absorption isotherm studies demonstrate a hysteresis behaviour that leads to good water holding capacity and provides thickening.
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In skin care applications, its porosity and large surface area make Omyaskin an efficient mattifying agent that absorbs sebum and reduces drying time, as an in vivo study has demonstrated:  22 subjects applied a face cream with 5% Omyaskin 100-OG daily for a period of 28 days. Skin-Glossymeter measurements showed a 12% shine decrease in 91% of the subjects, while Sebumeter results found that sebum was reduced by 29% in 82% of the participants. Furthermore, 10 panellists applied the face cream to their forearms for sensory evaluation and compared it to a reference formulation without Omyaskin. The formulation containing Omyaskin was described as significantly less sticky, faster absorbing and more viscous. In addition, 46.7% of the test subjects thought the cream containing Omyaskin had a silky feel, while only 6.7% concluded this about the reference cream.
In decorative cosmetic applications, the innovative particles exhibit a superior white pigment quality, which supports coverage of colour cosmetics while simultaneously giving a matt finish. Just 10% Omyaskin 100-OG particles, for instance, optimizes masking by up to 42%. An ideal replacement for TiO2, Omyaskin achieves its extraordinary opacity due to the large surface area provided by its external lamellae. A foundation formulation based on 5% Omyaskin without TiO2 provides similar coverage to a foundation containing 4% TiO2, but Omyaskin can also be combined with TiO2 for even higher performance. A foundation containing 5% Omyaskin without TiO2 was also tested in an in vivo trial. Full face photographs of 20 test subjects were taken in standardized, polarized light before and after application; aperture, speed and camera distance were consistent. An expert group examined the before and after pictures and graded the formulation 2.6 out of 3, with 0 being no coverage and 3 very good coverage. Additionally, using Visia complexion analysis, the smoothing effect of the formulation was assessed on the participants. The results showed a significant improvement in skin texture as well as evidence of a significant reduction in fine lines for all test subjects, with 89% efficacy after 15 minutes and 73% after four hours. Finally, the formulation was evaluated sensorially by ten panellists. Compared to the reference formulation without Omyaskin, the formulation had a significantly faster drying speed and provided a significantly better mattifying and covering effect as well as colour homogeneity and thickness.
The evidence collected in these studies suggests that Omyaskin is a very efficient, versatile ingredient, particularly suited to applications such as face creams and serums, foundations and BB/CC/DD creams. Not only is the mineral an excellent covering agent, but it also provides a mattifying effect and sebum absorption. It is fast drying after application, and has a silky feel.
Quality and sustainability first
Omyaskin offers the advantages of a best performing, multifunctional ingredient with a natural origin. Being high purity, this Natrue- and COSMOS-approved mineral complies with the most stringent regulatory and quality standards and meets the requirements of EC Commission regulation No. 1223/2009 on cosmetic products. The ingredient allows formulators to address current consumer demands for natural and sustainable solutions while simultaneously optimizing the performance and perception of personal care products. 
Dr Carolina Diaz Quijano, Head of Technical Services Consumer Goods, Omya International AG, and Anais Hecker, Formulation Specialist Personal & Oral Care, Omya International AG