Combining numerous active agents and ingredients in a single cosmetic product is rather beneficial for marketing purposes because quite a number of good stories can be told. Efficacy however often falls by the wayside since the concentrations of the individual substances come close to homeopathic dimensions.
The more numerous the ingredients the more likely is it that many of them are superfluous or rejected by the consumers for a variety of reasons:
- Perfumes or haptic properties of the product are disliked.
- Lipid- or moisturizing substances are not compatible with the skin type.
- Components are irritant or/and allergenic.
- Ingredients are:
- not vegan, halal or kosher,
- not biodegradable or outright polluting,
- originating from chemical synthesis and not from organic material ("bio"),
- non-physiological substances.
- Ingredients have adverse effects, such as:
- washout effects caused by emulsifiers
- hormonal effects caused by endocrine disruptors
- negative impact on antimicrobial peptides (AMP)
- negative impact on the skin recovery due to occlusive effects
- long term adverse effects with long term continuous use
Consumers are eager to receive individual and personal attention. They prefer customized preparations, in other words, preparations „with" or „without" certain ingredients. There are different strategies available to realise such preparations, such as:
Combining finished products with skin diagnosis data
A simple solution in this context is to use appropriate software supporting the combination of skin analysis results with a range of available finished products. Thus it is ensured that the best matching composition is used.
After processing the skin analysis data, or based on professional experience, personalized preparations are compounded from single components and then filled in containers. Automated compounding is disadvantageous insofar as certain cosmetic additives such as emulsifiers and preservatives are required since the processing system has to provide for an allover stable product.
Modular and individual cosmetic preparations
Individual preparations are manually compounded from modular bases such as base creams, -gels, -lotions and active agent concentrates (sera) whereby all of them are licensed as individual preparations and compatible among each other. The compounding is based on skin analyses that are processed with separate software. The software can incorporate empirical values and problem skin parameters.
This alternative is universally usable since it can take account of dermatological indications besides the analysed skin conditions. It is beneficial insofar as the dermatological therapy can be combined with the cosmetic preventive treatment without changing the base cream. As to the legal aspects, please refer to: Lautenschläger H, Eine gute Basis - Pharmazeutische und kosmetische Basiscremes, medical Beauty Forum 2016 (5), 12-17, available in English translation: "Sound base - pharmaceutical and cosmetic base creams".
Meanwhile the gene profile of consumers is used to compound adequate cosmetic preparations. It should however be mentioned that the results gained in this context still are far from reality
Dr Hans Lautenschläger