At this year's Congress of the International Federation of Societies of Cosmetic Chemists (IFSCC), BASF scientists will present the latest discoveries and research methods for the development of effective cosmetic products. Among the most notable research findings are the discovery of the age-related decline of skin-specific bacteria and the development of a cosmetic ingredient containing living microorganisms to fill this gap. Other research projects include a new neuroskin-on-chip technology used for the first time and developed by Netri to create a 3D internalized skin model, as well as a joint study with Stanford University on emollients that can reduce skin dryness and promote skin well-being. BASF scientists and experts will talk about the effects and opportunities in poster and panel presentations.
New method reveals the peculiarities of sensitive skin
Although it is known that the microbiome plays an important role in skin health, its influence on skin sensitivity has so far not received much attention. In a recent study, BASF scientists examined the composition of the skin microbiota of people with sensitive skin compared to people with non-sensitive skin. The analysis revealed changes in the presence and abundance of common and specific bacterial strains. For the first time, a droplet-based microfluidic technolgy (DBMT) technology developed by Biomillenia was used to isolate these bacterial strains in culture. The microbial library thus obtained can be used to identify and test the active substances that have the best potential to restore the balance of the microbiota of sensitive skin.
Neuroskin-on-chip technology mimics innervated skin
For healthy skin, a functional supply network of nerve cells is an essential factor. To develop and test neurocosmetics that help improve interactions between the skin and the nervous system, and thus reduce signs of aging or skin stress, specific skin models are needed. In collaboration with NETRI, a French start-up specializing in the rapid prototyping of "organs on a chip", BASF has succeeded in developing for the first time an innervated epidermis on a chip. Compared to existing models of innervated epidermis or skin in conventional coculture, the new "neuroskin-on-chip" technology better mimics the actual innervation physiology of the skin. It thus facilitates and improves the study of highly effective neurocosmetic active substances.
The selection of emollients promotes the hydration of the skin
How people evaluate the effectiveness of skin care products depends heavily on skin hydration and skin biomechanics. To optimize performance, it is therefore important to better understand the effects of biomechanical stresses that occur during dehydration of the stratum corneum. In order to study the influence of cosmetic ingredients at different levels of air and therefore skin humidity, a research team from BASF and the laboratory of Professor Reinhold Dauskardt at Stanford University analyzed skin care formulations containing different emollients with very different molecular properties and structures. The results indicate that by carefully choosing emollients and other ingredients, it is possible to reduce the biomechanical stress of the skin and promote its well-being.
Anti-aging probiotic ingredient containing live bacteria
Skin aging remains one of the most important areas of cosmetics. To better understand the link between aging and changes in the skin microbiome, BASF researchers conducted a study with young and old subjects. It revealed considerable differences in the population of Lactobacillus strains. L. crispatus was identified as "youth bacteria": It was present in abundance in young skin, but was not detectable in the folds of older participants. These results served as the basis for the development of a probiotic for skincare products to promote healthy skin aging. The research team has managed to develop a product that guarantees the survival of the bacteria it contains when used in appropriate cosmetic formulations. This makes the ingredient the first cosmetic active ingredient based on live and skin-specific bacteria. Its effectiveness in alleviating the visible signs of skin aging has been demonstrated in vitro and in vivo compared to placebo.
Strategy for reducing age-related changes in the scalp and hair based on plant extracts
With age, the structure of the scalp and its ability to regenerate changes. As a result, hair loss can occur, which can affect self-confidence and well-being. BASF scientists have developed a comprehensive anti-aging approach for the scalp and hair follicles, based on a temperance strategy and pursuing three main objectives: Reduce scalp sensitivity by protecting the skin barrier, balance the microbiota and reduce an excessive immune response. For this purpose, plant extracts were selected for their TRPV1 antagonistic properties. The best extract was then studied for its effects on the aforementioned parameters. This approach made it possible to identify a plant extract capable of counteracting age-related changes in the scalp and hair.
Interactive matrix for skin care products with anti-pollution effect
Pollutants are distinguished both by their nature and by their effect on the skin. Cosmetic products must therefore be formulated accordingly and their effectiveness must be proven. The Anti-Pollution Working Group of the German Society for Scientific and Applied Cosmetics (DGK) has developed a publicly accessible interactive matrix containing information on air pollutants, some of their effects on the skin, cosmetic ingredients and methods of application, as well as relevant methods for evaluating efficacy. The matrix does not claim to be exhaustive, but it provides a better understanding of the factors involved. It also shows how the challenges of proving a product's promise can be addressed when developing relevant skin care products.