Four ingredients to watch
Maracuja oil comes from various varieties of the beautiful passion flower plant, but it can also be extracted from the seeds of a passionfruit, resulting in two oils that are in fact very similar. Though it remains largely un-researched, the use of this precious oil in fact goes back all the way to the Aztec civilisation.
The oil many health benefits including inducing sleep and aiding relaxation, and is an anxiolytic meaning it calms anxiety. It has also been found that the oil extracted from passion fruit seeds is rich in linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid that plays a key role in skin function. Combining a light texture with a high concentration of fatty acids, maracuja oil is calming and soothing for the skin, penetrating the skin effortlessly whilst also preventing moisture loss. Its particularly high levels of vitamin C brighten the skin, and as an emollient it replenishes and nourishes, calming skin irritation and acting as an anti-inflammatory.
Kombucha is a fermented sweet black tea known for its health boosting benefits. Whilst the fermented food and drink forms part of many consumers’ daily habits, it’s still rare for fermented ingredients to appear in skin care. Kombucha has been consumed for many years, but its popularity has increased recently in New York, Melbourne and Singapore.
As vegetables and consumables are being adopted more than ever in personal care and skin care, and as the significance that bacteria have in maintaining a healthy body is more widely understood, an ingredient like Kombucha is set to become more frequently adopted in these categories.
The fermentation process results in a unique combination of vitamins and organic acids that are proven to provide age-delay benefits, whilst also defending against skin-damaging pollution and free radicals.
Brazilian Red Clay
Clays have been used for many centuries in beauty regimes for their ability to absorb access oils on the skin and to draw out impurities.
The striking colour of Brazilian Red Clay is somewhere between a warm, burnt red earth and rose gold. This rich, ruddy colour is an indication of the clay’s high levels of iron oxide. Thanks to this characteristically coloured pigment, formulations containing red clay are instantly recognisable. The clay is processed to make a fine texture, and there is also a slight shimmer in the clay that occurs naturally due to the mica.
Brazilian Red clay oozes benefits, fighting toxins, reducing the effect of solar radiation, improving elasticity of the skin and stimulating cells. Red clay is used in detoxifying and exfoliating masks, to draw out impurities and toxins from pores, improving skin clarity.
Importantly, red clay is also known to also have ‘bio-photonic’ effects, producing refracted light that can act on tissue and stimulate cellular activity. It is said that bio-photonics will lead the next generation of skincare.
According to legend, black rice was once only consumed by royalty, and was therefore known as forbidden rice or emperor’s rice, apparently being banned from common consumption in Ancient China.
It has a similar fibre content to brown rice, and also has a mild nutty taste. What makes it different to other varieties of rice is its outer layer. During the milling process, other refined grains are stripped of their high nutrient content and beneficial properties. The outer layer, also known as the hull and the bran, are only retained in whole grains. Black Rice does not go through any refining process, and so it retains its beneficial qualities from its antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and iron-rich fibre. Black rice’s high vitamin E content makes it useful in maintaining eye health, skin and hair health, and supports the immune system.
The outermost layer also known as the bran hull is in fact a very dark purple and contains one of the highest levels of the powerful antioxidant anthocyanin, the plant pigment which gives certain fruit and vegetables their deep red, purple or blue colours.