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.

Pearl powder with its ability to answer both these consumer needs in one active ingredient offers wonderful possibilities to the cosmetic scientist or dermatologist looking for a natural active with anti ageing and anti wrinkle effects.

As a marketing story the development of the pearl is well known and ever fascinating with its associations of transformation, renewal, rarity, discovery,beauty and luxury.

Pearl Powder is a micronised powder obtained from freshwater pearls, and contains both inorganic (aragonite crystals) and organic (protein complexes, amino acids & polysaccharides) constituents.

Pearls are made of aragonite (CaCO3) and a small amount of conchiolin – an organic albuminoid substance. Oyster pearl powder and shell are both excellent sources of calcium carbonate.

As an active ingredient, pearl powder has a fascinating story to present to the consumer. According to ancient texts and records pearl powder has been used for medicinal purposes in China for over 2000 years.

The secret of the smooth, clear skin of Chinese Empresses has been attributed to pearl powder formulations that were passed down through generations of doctors at the Emperor’s court.

In traditional Chinese medicine pearl powder is both taken internally and applied topically. More recently, French researchers have shown that oyster shell taken with calcium carbonate increases bone density in elderly patients.

Doctors who practice traditional Chinese medicine believe that calcium and other valuable minerals and amino acids from pearl powder are absorbed through the skin increasing the skin’s natural rate of healing. This effect can be harnessed in products to tone and rejuvenate the complexion, heal blemishes, minimize large pores and reduce redness.

It is the anti-inflammatory and wound healing action of this amazing natural active that offers a range of other exciting possibilities in personal care including: blemish control and anti acne formulations, gentle exfoliants and skin polishers, skin lightening and protein building hair care products.

Visually the pearl has a unique appearance combining shimmering smoothness and soft defused light in a beautiful natural form.

Very few natural active ingredients combine such high efficacy with a visual symbolism that enhances the marketing message to quite the same degree.

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