Our biotech actives derived from Melissa officinalis and Daucus carota sativa are the focus in the article ‘Sun care products with SPF-boosting plant phytocomplexes,’ published in N.27(2)-2024 Cosmetic Technology by CEC Editore, demonstrating their promising action as SPF-booster ingredients.

Sun can be beneficial to our health as it has a positive effect on mood, stress reduction, regularization of the circadian rhythm, and stimulation of melanin and vitamin D synthesis, to name a few. However, its harmful effects are also well-known, as it could lead to sunburn, premature skin aging, even skin cancer is some cases. Consumers are more aware that ever of the importance of sun protection, as we can observe the “skinification” of sun care products, driven by the need for formulas that can protect the skin from UV rays and Blue Light while also providing skincare benefits.

SPF-booster ingredients are gaining traction in the cosmetic industry, as they seem promising in reducing the use of solar filters in sun care products. In recent years, the use of solar filters has been widely discussed due to their environmental impact and potential toxic effects following possible local or systemic adsorption.

DauVes CROP®-G/P and MetropolePure CROP®-G/P cosmetic activities

The two phytocomplexes evaluated in the study were derived from wild red-purple Daucus carota sativa and Melissa officinalis plant-cell cultures, respectively, using Aethera Biotech’s proprietary CROP® platform. This platform guarantees the absence of pollutants and environmental contaminants such as pesticides, heavy metals, and aflatoxins.

DauVes CROP®-G is a standardized phytocomplex dispersed in glycerine and rich in anthocyanins, that fights photoaging thanks to double level activities: antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, prolonging cell longevity. It also protects skin against oxidative stress working as a powerful scavenger and improves blood microcirculation reducing the skin redness in sensitive skin.

MetropolePure CROP®-G is a standardized phytocomplex rich in total polyphenols (rosmarinic acid) dispersed in glycerine, able to shield the skin against external stresses, reducing the damages by blue light and IR radiations. It protects the skin from damage induced by oxidative stress and preserves the mitochondria, ensuring wellbeing integrity under stressed conditions.

Proven efficacy as SPF-booster for DauVes CROP®-G/P and MetropolePure CROP®-G/P

The study aimed to evaluate the use of phytocomplexes of Daucus carota sativa and Melissa officinalis in three different types (powder form, dispersed in glycerine, and dispersed in camelina oil) in a sun care formulation with SPF 30, used as the standard reference.

Formulations containing the dry powdered phytocomplexes and the  glycerine-dispersed phytocomplexes were homogeneous and more organoleptically pleasing. However, emulsions with the phytocomplex dispersed in camelina oil were not very consistent, with the presence of lumps and difficult to rub on the skin after accelerated ageing.

To verify the SPF boosting activity of Aethera phytocomplexes, an in vitro SPF assessment was conducted on the formulations with the best organoleptic profile. In particular, the analysis was performed on the formulations with the intermediate concentration ranging from 0,5% (dry phyotocomplexes) -5% (phytocomplex dispersed in glycerin with camelina oil). Compared to the standard reference, all samples containing Aethera phytocomplexes produced an SPF 50 booster activity.

The study has demonstrated that phytocomplex of Daucus carota sativa and Melissa officinalis obtained through the CROP® process hold promise for inclusion in sun care formulations as SPF boosters, while also possessing specific cosmetic activities inherently present in the ingredients.