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|BASF's new bioactive ingredients use unique properties of rambutan to hydrate and rejuvenate skin and revitalise hair|
These are the first ingredients developed through the BASF Rambutan Programme, a socially and environmentally responsible supply chain initiative for the production of sustainable bioactives in Vietnam.
The bioactive ingredients from rambutan were identified and extracted by a global, interdisciplinary BASF team which focuses exclusively on the extraction of valuable substances from plant material. “Plants are at the heart of our value proposition. Our commitment to further improve our sourcing network is driving our innovation to develop new products from sustainably sourced plants,” said Lucilene Veira Nunes, head of Business Management Beauty Care Solutions Europe.
Consumers in the Asia-Pacific region and around the world are placing increasing attention to responsible beauty, creating demand for such products from hair and skin care manufacturers. At the same time, Vietnam has taken a strong stance on fostering biodiversity, for example with the passage of its updated biodiversity law in 2009, accession of the Nagoya Protocol in 2014, and Decree No.59/2017/ND-CP in 2017.
BASF is addressing these needs through its Rambutan Programme, which was launched in 2015. This initiative brings together BASF, local growers, scientific partners, and non-governmental organisations to create an environmentally and socially responsible sourcing programme for Vietnamese rambutan. BASF has found a way to extract the powers of the peel, leaves, and seeds for cosmetic products, which avoids waste and minimises land use. At the same time, the programme offers above-average incomes for growers, ensures gender equity, guarantees safer working conditions, and provides health insurance.
A dedicated Rambutan Team is supported by the Center for Rural Economy Development (CRED), a leading Vietnam-based non-profit organisation which works to ensure teh greater inclusion of poor and marginalised groups to take the lead in the development of their livelihoods. The Rambutan Team maintains the gardens throughout the year, harvests the fruit, and prepares all raw materials for the extraction of the bioactive ingredients.
Ingredients are preservative-free, 100 per cent natural in origin, and COSMOS-approved
The rambutan, which is closely related to the lychee, has been used traditionally throughout Asia to promote healthy hair and skin and to quell dysentery. The tree’s juicy fruits are rich in iron, vitamin C, fibres, and antioxidants. The rinds contain various compounds with antioxidant properties, and the seeds are known to decrease unwanted fat. The pulp boosts energy and immunity, prevents diseases, and contributes to eliminate free radicals.
Nephydrat™, an extract from the spiny fruit peel, reinforces the skin’s capacity for water retention and helps to hydrate the skin – a noticeable effect proven in tests with volunteers. The extract fuels keratinocytes with energy and increases phospholipids and long-chain ceramide synthesis for an optimal skin barrier function. Nephydrat provides measurable and perceivable benefits for increased skin hydration and a uniform, fresh complexion.
The evergreen-leaves extract Nephoria™ helps mature skin to rejuvenate through biological pathways similarly to those of retinol. Through its action on several major biological targets involved in collagen synthesis and elastic fibre network, the leaf extract stimulates both collagen and elastic fibre formation in vitro. Nephoria in vivo showed increased skin elasticity and reducing wrinkles.
The seed extract Rambuvital™ protects both the scalp and hair follicles against pollution-induced stress. It increases hair follicle vitality and reduces sebum oxidation triggered by exposure to pollutants and UV. The seed extract enhances the cornified scalp’s barrier function, contributing to water retention by increasing transglutaminase-1 and loricrin synthesis in keratinocytes. In vivo, the scalp was significantly more hydrated within one month and the hair appeared and felt visibly healthier and shinier. Rambuvital also acts as a hair deodorant, repelling the smell of pollution.
All three bioactives are preservative-free, 100 per cent natural in origin, and COSMOS-approved. They are obtained through a unique extraction and purification process, yielding a product with standardised active matter content. For the seed and leaf extracts, the combination of maltodextrin and spray drying allows obtaining concentrated extracts with a recommended dose of use of only 0.1 per cent. The recommended dosage of the liquid peel extract is 2 per cent.