Based near Bordeaux in southwestern France, the company upcycles the by-products of grapes from the northeastern Champagne region, which it says are up to five times richer in beneficial and bioavailable monomers than other Vinifera varieties.
Regulating melanin production
In speaking with NutraIngredients-USA at the recent SupplySide West trade show, Benoit Lemaire, CEO and co-founder at Activ’Inside, explains that Belight3 was developed to respond to the interest in the Asian market for an oral supplement that specifically targets the appearance of hyperpigmentation.
"When presenting our first nutricosmetic SkinAx2 in Asia, most of the focus was on the melanin spot benefits, and this led to the development of Belight3,” he said. “In Asia, skin ages differently. Spots appear first and wrinkles after the age of 50, whereas skin wrinkles first in Caucasian populations."
Belight3 builds on the SkinAx2 beauty-from-within formulation developed for skin radiance, combining grape flavonol monomers, licorice extract, Vitamin C and grape viniferin. Activ’Inside attributes the regulation of melanin synthesis to the synergistic interaction between ingredients, particularly Vitamin C and the flavonols from the grape pomace.
The science and the synergy
The company’s research to date shows that the Belight3 formulation acts through its ability to inhibit the tyrosinase enzyme involved in melanin production, with an in-house in vitro study demonstrating an 85% reduction in tyrosinase activity.
A usage study, which administered a 300 mg daily dose of Belight3 to 100 participants over a 60-day evaluation period, reported a 30% reduction in dark spots related to age, 40% to sun exposure and 27% to pregnancy mask.
“The open trial conducted under dermatological control proved that combined together, the ingredients of Belight3 work as early as 11 days, making it an effective and fast-acting formula,” Lemaire said, adding that other extracts can take three months to work.
As anecdote to the synergy between the Belight3 ingredients, Lemaire references Nobel prize winning Hungarian biochemist Albert Szent-Györgyim, who simultaneously discovered Vitamin C and Vitamin P (now more commonly known as flavonoids) in 1928.
Results from a forthcoming study demonstrate the clinical effectiveness of Belight3 in adults.
Women’s health and well-being in focus
Looking down the pipeline, Lemaire said that the company is exploring the benefits of grape extracts for women’s health beyond the skin and continues to investigate how its Safr’Inside saffron ingredient protects the serotonin pathway from stress.
“The primary focus behind all of our ingredient development is performing a comprehensive range of scientific trials that will show that our ingredients do what we claim and do them well,” Lemaire added. “To do so, we invest 20% of our revenue in R&D and, so far, we have earned 17 patents and published more than 20 studies on our ingredients.”
Active’Inside’s portfolio also includes Memophenol – a blend of grape and wild blueberry extracts clinically shown to boost neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity for improved memory, concentration, mental endurance and overall cognitive performance in seniors, college students and gamers.