and oxidative stress, both of
which are believed to contribute
to (premature) aging. Antioxidant
ingredients hold almost half of
the market share in the nutricosmetic sector. The most popular
ingredients are proanythocyani-dins, green tea polyphenols,
superoxide dismutase or SOD
(sourced from cantaloupe extract),
CoQ10, phytosterols and
carotenoids (as lycopene and lutein).
Essential fatty acids have anti-inflammatory
properties; examples include omega 3 and 6 fatty
acids (as linolenic acid).
Vitamins are involved in a plethora of physiologic
functions for growth and maintenance and include,
most commonly, vitamins A, B, C, D and E.
words, not all topical formulations will
yield consistent results on all skin
types. Nutricosmetics may alleviate
this issue altogether as each person’s
digestive system will metabolize the
product and theoretically derive what
the body needs. This may be a compelling reason to drive the growth of
nutricosmetics in the U.S.
Frost & Sullivan believes there are
several factors that may stimulate
growth in the nutricosmetics market. First, as the
population in the U.S. ages, there is a greater empha-
sis on healthier lifestyles. Since “health” is being
viewed more globally as “wellness,” beauty concerns
are included in this definition. Commensurate with
this is an increased demand for organic/natural, eco-
friendly and less toxic products. However, the U.S. con-
sumer is not likely to continue or increase the pur-
chase of such products unless their use is substantiat-
ed by scientific evidence supporting their efficacy.
But Frost & Sullivan also points to other factors
that may contribute to market restraint vis-à-vis
nutricosmetics. Specifically, doubt remains in the U.S.
consumer’s mind that the products actually deliver
results. In addition, since the oral route of potentially
improving appearance is indirect, results may take too
long to observe, if the ingested products do not have a
reasonably high bioavailability. In a society where
instant gratification is revered, a prolonged period
before an outcome is regarded as not desirable.
Another potential factor that may slow the growth
of the nutricosmetics industry in the U.S. is the development of complex formulations, where it is difficult to
discern if a single ingredient has a prominent effect.
Also, the lack of both information that consumers are
seeking as well as awareness of the potential positive
effects that nutricosmetics may have on skin, may
serve to limit the expansion of this industry.
For the future, because U.S. consumers are becoming better educated regarding the effects of nutricosmetics, and the products seem to fulfill several needs
that traditional cosmetics have not, the market is
expected to grow faster than both the personal care
and nutraceuticals sectors in the near future. ;
There is an obvious link between
food, health and beauty.
Embracing a New Approach to Beauty
There is an obvious link between food and health.
Therefore, it is reasonable to believe there is an
equally strong association between nutrition and the
health of one’s skin, hair and nails.
The best sources of vitamins, minerals and
antioxidants are whole, unprocessed foods.
However, modern living, with all of its inherent
stresses, may deplete ingested or internal stores of
energy and nutrients, thus necessitating oral sup-plementation. As a result, while nutricosmetics are
not new per se, their use may signal a paradigm
shift in the way that beauty is achieved or maintained. Moreover, nutricosmetics may herald a new
direction in age management that offers a wider,
global accessibility to better overall wellness, of
which beauty is a component.
Traditional topical cosmetics are applied on the
epidermis and work only on the most superficial
layer of the skin. This has limited effects, as topical
products have no other benefit from a more holistic
perspective, neither on adjacent skin nor distant
organs or tissues. Further, traditional cosmetics may
irritate the skin.
It is sometimes difficult to determine which skin
type is better suited to a particular product. In other