Manufacturers of natural cosmetics are currently frustrated by the lack of natural preservatives on the market and are forced to use 'nature identical' alternatives such as benzoic and benzyl alcohol.
These 'nature identical' preservatives are produced synthetically but are chemically identical to substances that are found in nature.
Slovenia-based Vitiva has now joined the scientific race to formulate effective natural preservatives for the personal care industry with Inolens 4.
Containing active ingredients derived from rosemary, Inolens 4 can be added to cosmetic products to protect cosmetic oils from oxidation and rancidity and therefore help extend shelf-life.
"Inolens 4 has outperformed widely used tocopherols as well as synthetic ingredients, such as BHA and BHT while extending the shelf life of oils up to six times depending on the oil type," said Vitiva's CEO Ohad Cohen.
The product has been tested for efficacy on a range of oils including echium, evening primrose, olive, virgin borage, virgin walnut and virgin sunflower oil.
The company said it can easily blended with these oils before being added to skin care products such as body lotions, sunscreens and massage oils.
Vitiva produces a wide range of rosemary extracts for various cosmetic and food applications.
In addition to Inolens 4 the company produces other anti-ageing and preservative ingredients for cosmetic products.
Another company working to produce natural alternatives to synthetic preservatives is Avisco.
The Israeli biotech company has developed the natural preservative Aviorex, which uses the shrub Inula viscose and also boasts anti-oxidant, anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory benefits.
If these preservatives prove to be effective they will undoubtedly prove popular with natural manufacturers who often feel forced to use weak forms of synthetic preservatives in their products.