Consider recent data collected by Mintel. In the U.S. 44% of adults have prioritized mental well-being since the start of COVID-19. Some of the fastest growing skin care claims are “environmentally-friendly” and “free-from” in new product launches. About 58% of U.S. adults who currently use CBD take the compound to reduce stress; 52% find the anti-inflammatory benefits of beauty products that contain hemp or CBD appealing.
The most successful cannabinoid brands will embrace this “clean wellness” moment by adhering to the principles of clean beauty: safety, sustainability, transparency, and performance. Consumers are willing to accept premium products, especially when they become educated on the quantity of CBD in a formulation, information about the CBD itself, and why certain ingredients are used. Within this context, ingredient selection is more important than ever.
Our bodies are naturally built to respond to cannabinoids through the endocannabinoid system. Cannabinoids can help regulate various functions of our skin by interacting with receptors in the dermis and epidermis.
The main function of the skin endocannabinoid system is to maintain the proper balance of skin cell functions by controlling the growth, differentiation, and survival of skin cells. This is important because any disruption to this delicate balance may lead to a variety of skin conditions like acne, inflammation, dermatitis, and hair growth disorders.
For CBD products to work and to realize these benefits, they need efficient delivery to where these receptors are in the skin. A recent study by Aprinnova was conducted to evaluate the performance of various carrier oils to support this kind of delivery. The results provide a case study on how to choose CBD skin care ingredients for a range of applications such as oils, balms, lotions, and serums.
The ability of carrier oils to facilitate skin penetration of CBD was evaluated using an in vitro model of human skin. A commercially available in vitro reconstructed human epidermis from normal human keratinocytes (EpiSkin) was used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Test samples were prepared by mixing CBD in one of five carrier oils: Neossance Squalane, sunflower oil, hemp seed oil, caprylic/capric triglycerides (CCT), and jojoba oil at 1% w/w concentration.
The three-dimensional cultured skins (EpiSkin) were plated in the wells of the 12 well plates and conditioned overnight in maintenance medium. The maintenance medium was replaced with 2 mL of 1% Tween in PBS(-) solution for each well, and 0.15 mL of the test sample was applied to the stratum corneum of the skin model and incubated at 37°C for 1, 3, 6, or 24 hours. At each time point, the test sample was removed from the surface of the skin and washed five times with 0.5 mL of the respective carrier oil.
For each test sample, three distinct types of samples were collected (skin cells, receptor fluid, and washing fluid) in triplicate at various time points (1, 3, 6, and 24 hours) and the amount of CBD in each sample was measured. For the skin cell samples, the washed cells were transferred to an Eppendorf tube and 1 mL of ethanol and a stainless-steel bead was added. The skin cells were then grinded with a TissueLyser, and diluted with isopropanol up to a volume of 50 mL. The amount of CBD in each sample type (skin cells, receptor fluid, and washing fluid) was determined by HPLC.
The amount of CBD measured in the skin cell fraction of the model at various time points showed that Neossance Squalane facilitated faster and greater penetration and delivery of CBD into the skin over the 24-hour period of the experiment. In contrast, the other carrier oils demonstrated much lower penetration rates of CBD over the same time period.
his study demonstrated the importance of one of clean beauty’s most important pillars: performance. It also emphasizes that the entire ingredient profile should be considered. Is an ingredient sourced from sustainable and renewable feedstocks, transparently sourced with a clear chain of custody, and of the highest safety standards? If an ingredient meets these demands, then cannabinoid brands will have a higher chance of nourishing growth for years to come.
About the Authors:
Diva Chan leads Aprinnova’s new product application development, and John Toner leads the company’s global innovation efforts. For more info: www.aprinnova.com.