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Unilever ceramides research ‘unlocks secret to self-healing skin’

Unilever has claimed it has discovered how the skin can be stimulated to maintain its own production of ceramides to improve skin quality and hydration.

Ceramides act to bind skin cells together and are effective at counteracting dryness and are contained in many personal care products.

However, says Unilever, the large size of these ceramides prevents them from penetrating the skin.

Unilever scientists have been looking to overcome this issue by finding ways to trigger the skin’s natural ceramide-producing processes, thereby enabling it to heal from within.

“Our products contain skin-identical lipid precursors which act as the building blocks to allow the natural process of ceramide production to occur,” said Dr Andrew Mayes, Senior Skin Research Manager at Unilever R&D.

“They provide the raw materials and then the skin can do the rest,” he added.

A study published in scientific journal Nature Scientific Reports shows that boosting ceramides can lead to dramatic improvements for people with dry skin.

“We can now build stronger skin from within,” said Dr Mayes. “By strengthening and rebuilding the skin’s functional moisture barrier, skin feels better, looks better, and is more resilient to the outside world.”

Working with microbiome data analysts Eagle Genomics, Unilever identified that when people used its products, they showed a significant increase of Staphylococcus epidermidis - a bacteria associated with good skin health.

This microbe is naturally present on human skin and plays a key role in the production of beneficial metabolites, including lactic acid, that help defend the skin against external threats.

“The ability of product application to improve the skin microbiome was a very exciting discovery,” said Dr Barry Murphy, Senior Microbiome Research Manager at Unilever R&D.

“Over the past number of years, we have built a strategic partnership with Eagle Genomics. Using its AI-augmented platform to analyse complex biological data and study how our skin and its microbiome interact, has been central to this research.”

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Upcoming Events

SCSS Suppliers Day - SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE MARRIOTT TANG PLAZA HOTEL
Thursday 25th & Friday 26th August 2022

32nd IFSCC Congress

Park Plaza Hotel, Westminster
19-22 September 2022

in-cosmetics Latin America 2022

Expo Center Norte, Sao Paulo
21 - 22 September

Cosmetorium 2022

Palau de Congressos de Barcelona
28 - 29 September

SEPAWA 2022

Estrel Congress Center, Berlin
26 - 28 October

in-cosmetics Asia 2022

BITEC Bangkok, Thailand
1 - 3 November 2022

Access the latest issue of Personal Care Global on your mobile device together with an archive of back issues.

Download the FREE Personal Care Global app from your device's App store

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