Probiotics in hand sanitizers can recolonize with the 'good guys'

By Katie Bird

- Last updated on GMT

Probiotics in hand sanitizers can recolonize with the 'good guys'

Related tags Hand sanitizer Probiotic

Probiotics can be protected and incorporated into hand sanitizers using a new encapsulation technique, as a way of recolonizing the hands with good bacteria after killing the bad, according to US company Capsulent.

The technology can encapsulate either prebiotics or probiotics, protecting them from the alcohol or triclosan in the hand sanitizer formulation, company president Tycho Speaker explained.

Click on the player to hear Tycho Speaker discussing the innovation.

The hand sanitizer itself, be it alcohol- or triclosan-based, will not discriminate between the good bacteria and the bad bacteria, Speaker said.

This leaves a ‘scorched earth’ behind where the sanitizer has killed everything; the next bacteria to land on the skin will be able to colonise the environment with no competitors, whether good or bad, he added.

Capsulent’s technology can encapsulate the probiotics keeping them separate from the alcohol or tricsolan in the formulation. After application, when the rest of the formulation has evaporated the capsules will open, releasing their probiotic contents.

According to Speaker, the company has taken swabs after application of the product and found the probiotics that were encapsulated in the product have recolonized the skin.

“We will grow out the selective recolonization bacteria that we have included rather than leaving scorched earth behind…we are able to put the good guys on the surface” ​he said.

The technology can also be used to encapsulate UV filters improving stability and increasing SPF.

Encapsulating the UVA absorber avobenzone and the UVB filter OMC, and not allowing them to release even on contact with the skin, stops them from interacting. Interaction between these two filters would usually result in a severe photodegradation and loss of protection.

CosmeticsDesign.com USA conducted an interview with Speaker about the applications of the encapsulation in sun care, which can be heard here​.

Related topics Formulation & Science Skin Care

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