“The new cosmetic normality”

“The new cosmetic normality”

By Prof. Carla Scesa, Editor in Chief, HPC Today Journal, Tks Publisher

A rapidly changing world is influencing cosmetology, which today focuses not only on external beauty but on all the factors that generate wellness. In fact, we are addressing (especially in the more developed countries) people who are ageing (and Italy is in first place) and who have been heavily affected, also psychologically, by Covid, lock down, smart working. There is therefore the consequent growing desire to find a new equilibrium in life.

Even for cosmetics, there is a lot of discussion about environment and problems linked to it. But the digital world of the Internet is also being addressed, with global sharing of information and choices.

The result is a new way of thinking, proposing and formulating, which is often described as ‘the new cosmetic normality’.

People seem to no longer be looking for “emotional” ingredients, but for well-defined substances validated by experimental tests and biochemical research. This scientific information is accompanied by boosters which increase absorption to reach cellular targets with the lowest concentration of active substance and proven efficacy.

The Pandemic and the environment also influence the study and production of cosmetics with a low environmental impact, involving resources as local as possible, to reduce transport and storage problems. The use of process energy is reduced through production at lower and controlled temperatures (room temperature processes), and water consumption is limited as much as possible, both during industrial processing and in formulation and subsequent application (particularly interesting, for example, in trichological preparations for professional use).

Advanced textures are being studied which, during application, modify their physical state or ‘dialogue’ with the skin’s neurotransmitters towards new sensations which increase their effectiveness: creating physical and psychological well being.

The growing presence of the Internet, with its immense communication potential, favours the creativity and technological expression of new, often young, ‘cosmetics protagonists’: small entities of study and research, also from little-known cultures and traditions, and therefore potentially very innovative. The ‘sea route’ is increasingly opening up with all its as yet unexplored secrets.

But the ‘net’ can also generate confusion and misinformation: invisible dangers that nevertheless influence the choice and hence the development of new cosmetics. Products are formulated that communicate daily (an average of eight cosmetics a day) with the human body, influencing the response of its largest protective organ: the skin. Major changes are taking place that affect the skin’s immune response, which has to adapt more and more rapidly to physiological changes due to ageing and the environment. We are particularly concerned with increasing exposure to electromagnetic radiation (mobile phones, computers) from the earliest years of life, in addition to the well-known sun rays whose impact on the earth is changing as a result of climate change.

So how can we meet today’s cosmetic challenges? With knowledge and scientific research made up of studies and new targets: from the microbiota, to epigenetics, to chrono-biological interactions, and with the increasing use of artificial intelligence.

This is a stimulating challenge for cosmetology technicians, but also for the media, which must be an attentive and well-prepared sentinel to inform us all about safe and informed choices.

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