Anti-Pollution Special Newsletter

Inside, Outside, Upside-down: Anti-pollution solutions in the Americas

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

Inside, Outside, Upside-down: Anti-pollution solutions in the Americas

Related tags Cosmetics design Omega-3 fatty acid Nutrition

Pollution is a global reality and a particular concern in urban areas. Whether it’s from light, gases, particulate matter, organic compounds, or heavy metals, ingredient and personal care makers serving the region are innovating to mitigate pollution’s impact on the skin.

All along the supply chain and on into the marketplace, anti-pollution is getting a lot of attention. From a newly launched ingredient made in Brazil to a formulation kit developed for contract manufacturers worldwide or a beauty brand making newly possible skin care, it seems everyone serving the Americas regions is getting in on anti-pollution solutions. 


Patricia Moreira, skin care product manager at Chemyunion who lead the company’s launch of the anti-pollution ingredient SkinBlitz, spoke with Cosmetics Design at the recent in-cosmetics global event in London.

She explained that the company developed SkinBlitz because clients had asked for an anti-pollution skin care ingredient. And it’s little wonder; according to data Moreira shared, many cities in the US are above a healthy pollution level limit.

Moreira calls SkinBlitz a “unique solution to anti-pollution.” ​Through testing, she says the company has been able to prove that this film-former ensures that pollutants like heavy metals and even cigarette smoke do not contact the skin.

Moreira tells Cosmetics Design that the company has no plans to launch an extensive portfolio of anti-pollution ingredients. SkinBlitz, she says, “is a complete solution.” ​Though she did suggest other anti-pollution ingredients may be in the pipeline for other applications like hair care.


At the in-cosmetics global show numerous ingredient companies were offering anti-pollution solutions. And the global distributor Azelis even made it the concept of their entire formulation kit: ‘Urban Impact.’

As if to reinforce how prevalent of a concern pollution is, this Urban Impact formulation kit is the first such kit the company has put together for all of its customers around the world. Historically, Azelis had developed kits based on specific regional needs and preferences.

“Anti-pollution claims are up dramatically,” ​Claire Summers, technical development manager for Azelis Personal Care, tells Cosmetics Design. And the company’s marketing literature includes a stat from Mintel indicating that almost 4,000 personal care and cosmetic items launched between 2009 and 2013 had the word ‘pollution’ in the product description.

The 6-product kit was developed so Azelis could “hand [a complete anti-pollution] service to contract manufacturers,” ​says Summers. The kit comprises a day protection product, one for daily defense, a marine power mask, a skin matrix protection product, a skin rebalancer, and an urban protection eye gel. And a few of the key ingredients used are derived from on-trend materials like seaweed, charcoal, and bamboo.

Finished goods

But it’s not only problems that can spark inspiration; discovering what is possible can also lead to exciting innovations. “As with most of our products, the team was inspired by the latest, fascinating research on how topically applied omega fatty acids help skin,”​ Desiree Stordahl, senior research and education manager of Seattle, Washington – based Paula’s Choice tells Cosmetics Design.

“For years we’ve known the health benefits of these oils when consumed as part of a healthy diet; now we know how much they help skin! Specifically, omega 3s, 6s, and 9s, which are naturally soothing and skin-replenishing. They work synergistically with the ceramides and hydrating ingredients in this formula to create a strong skin barrier—it’s like a healthy diet for your skin,”​ she says.

When Stordahl mentions ‘this formula’ she’s referring to Paula’ Choice RESIST Omega+ Complex. The product, launched just this month, “helps fight against signs of environmental damage, including UV exposure, airborne pollution and seasonal aggressors,”​ explains Stordahl.

And she goes on to note that the new product “doesn’t ‘detox’ skin because in truth skincare cannot do that. Skin doesn’t harbor toxins that need to be removed (pollution isn’t the same thing as a toxin).”

In terms of benefits, Stordahl tells Cosmetics Desing that “the concentrated level of omega fatty acids fortify skin against visible signs of aging and instantly nourishes dehydrated skin to restore a healthy, natural glow.  You can expect to see a dull complexion rejuvenated and an impressive supple feel that does double duty by diminishing the look of lines and wrinkles. Perfect for year-round use, RESIST Omega+ Complex is fragrance-free and so gentle it can be used around the eyes for maximum benefits.”

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