The Newark, NJ-based company was formed in 2007 when the Lipoid Group purchased Cosmetochem AG, a Swiss company that produces high quality botanical extracts and actives.
One of its products is a line called Herbamilk, which is a range of natural plant emulsions that contain stable plant oils and extracts with a plant-derived emulsifier system.
These natural cosmetic milk concentrates allow both water- and fat-soluble ingredients to be incorporated together. They are self-preserving, slightly opaque (translucent), yellowish brown, slightly viscous liquids which are stable for a minimum of 12 months if refrigerated (2-8°C). The plant oils and herbal ingredients form an oil-in-water emulsion that is stabilized by lecithin. The plant oils are in the inner portion of the matrix. Dispersing Herbaspheres in water gives the milky appearance of Herbamilk.
Three different versions are offered:
- Almond Oil Herbaspheres (INCI name: Glycerin, water, Prunus amygdalus dulcis (sweet almond) oil, hydrogenated lecithin, citric acid). The fruit of the almond tree has an outer hull and a hard shell with a seed, the almond. Sweet almond oil is cold pressed from it and is said to have emollient, moisturizing, and anti-irritant properties.
- Orchid/Almond Oil Herbaspheres (INCI name: Same name as above with vanilla planifolia fruit extract added just before the citric acid.) The vanilla is a member of the climbing orchids family that gets moisture and nutrients from air and rain while anchored to another plant. The pods have no flavor or odor until they are cured.
- Sheabutter/Almond Oil Herba-spheres (INCI: Same as the first product, with Butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter added before the hydrogenated lecithin). The shea tree is found in Africa and grows up to 14 meters high. The yellow fruits contain one or more oil rich seeds from which shea butter is extracted.
In formulations, the preferred pH range is 5-7, and the recommended use level is 1-10%.
Following is a suggested body lotion with Orchid/Almond Oil Herbaspheres.
|Citric acid (50%)||0.35|
|Sodium stearoyl glutamate||1.30|
|Vitis Vinifera (Grape) seed oil||5.00|
|Butyrospermum Parkii (shea) butter||8.00|
|Orchid/Almond Oil Herbaspheres||4.00|
The procedure is not provided, but I assume phase A and B are heated separately to the same temperature and B with the dissolved solid cetearyl alcohol is added to phase A. Phase C would be added at 50°C or below.
The manufacturer affirms the compatibility and non-toxicity of the Herbaspheres and states that they are compliant with REACH, Ecocert and COSMOS standards.
Harvey M. Fishman
Harvey Fishman has a consulting firm in Wanaque, NJ, specializing in cosmetic formulations and new product ideas, offering tested finished products. He has more than 30 years of experience and has been director of research at Bonat, Nestlé LeMur and Turner Hall. He welcomes descriptive literature from suppliers and bench chemists and others in the field.