Archives for October 2008

Pumice – complex geology in a familiar form

Pumice stone is the end product of an amazing natural force – the volcano.

As a natural ingredient it has some unique properties including low density, lightness and abrasiveness which make it ideal in exfoliating and polishing products.

From a marketing view point, pumice manages to combine scientific complexity with familiarity. Most people recognise a pumice stone as a humble household object – yet delving deeper into the scientific origins of pumice open up a much more complex picture requiring at least a superficial understanding of geology. [Read more…]

Why Moroccan women love rhassoul clay

Moisturizing and full of minerals Rhassoul clay has been the beauty treatment of choice for generations of women in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco.

Not all clays are created equal and rhassoul clay differs from others in its unique composition. Whilst it is extremely absorbent and great for cleansing skin it is moisturizing as well.

Many clays are known to strip oil from the skin but treatment with rhassoul clay leaves skin buttery soft. [Read more…]

How seaweeds benefit us all

Seaweed is a commonly used term for a vast and complex genus of plants covering some 6000 species. The term refers to the large marine algae that grow in the shallow waters at the edge of the world’s oceans.

Seaweeds provide a natural habitat and a source of food for a huge range of marine animals and enhance the natural beauty of the shore and underwater landscape. They are hugely valuable to humankind as a food, an industrial raw material and increasingly as a highly active cosmeceutical ingredient. [Read more…]

Micro algae fights skin ageing

Spirulina platensis – the most commonly found micro algae in Cuba – has been shown to offer high protection against free radicals according to a research study at the University of Havana.

The study which was carried out in November 2007 discovered that the high vitamin E and carotene content of the algae can stimulate the immune system and help in the prevention of cancer and premature skin ageing.

The research group has produced a line of cosmetic products based on their findings using hydroalcoholic extracts of Spirulina platensis which is being marketed throughout South America and parts of Europe. [Read more…]

The anti ageing secret of the oyster pearl

ancient empress wearing pearls

Used for over 2000 years in China in both traditional medicine and topical applications – pearl powder is an exciting and effective natural active for skin care.

Particularly effective in anti ageing products, pearl powder smoothes, softens and nourishes skin and maintains skin tone.

Perhaps the two most important strands of skin care research currently – in reaction to consumer demand – are the search for anti ageing skin care and naturally active skin care. [Read more…]

Mulberries the latest ‘superfruit’

Mulberries are the latest in a fairly long line of fruit berries to be given ‘superfood’ status.

The famous subject of a children’s nursery rhyme and the favoured diet of the silkworm – mulberries are not very well known as a domestic fruit.

In appearance they most resemble loganberries or raspberries but mulberry fruit rival and even outperform cranberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries when it comes to phytoactive ingredients. [Read more…]

The hard nut that creates naturally soft skin

There is nothing unfamiliar or startling about the walnut. But – despite their familiarity – walnuts can be used as an attractive exfoliating ingredient in any natural skin care range.

Walnuts are well known and loved as a food. They have associations for the Western consumer of treats – cakes, Christmas holidays, luscious puddings, chocolate fillings, rich toffee sauces, salad oils.

Walnut wood has associations of luxury and style with its deep richly coloured patina and quality finish. The nut itself is visually intricate and appealing. [Read more…]