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Skin Hydration

A key routine

Hydration is to the skin what the little black dress is to a woman's wardrobe: some would say it's a basic, others a timeless essential! In reality, this is the leading benefit consumers expect from skincare products. Between 1999 and 2016, 39% of products launched in this category claimed a hydrating effect.

Hydration is a market segment riding high in all four corners of the globe! In Asia, the market is concentrated mainly on facial care products. In 2014, 60% of the total volume of facial hydration products were sold on this continent. In the United States, skin hydration is one of the main consumer concerns. According to a recent survey, 42% of consumers consider having dry skin is one of the biggest problems in winter. Finally in France, although mature, the face hydration market is energized by new gelled textures.**

Hydrating the skin is a routine that responds to two separate but closely-related problems: skin dryness and dehydration.

Skin dryness can be related to a problem with the hydrolipidic film (defect in sebum production) but also an imbalance in the barrier functions (intercellular lipid cement). A dry skin is liable to environmental, chemical and mechanical attack, which cause sensations of chronic tightness and roughness of the skin, even going as far as so-called 'crocodile skin'. Dryness of the skin results in more significant imperceptible water loss, leading to dehydration.

Dehydrated skin, as its name suggests, is skin lacking water. On the face, this is characterized by the appearance of small wrinkles, sometimes called dehydration lines, even on young skins! In general, skin dehydration causes sensations of discomfort and tightness. Dehydration problems don't just affect dry skins: they can also concern all other skin types (normal, oily, cry and combination).

Hydrating cosmetic products must therefore provide the skin with water but also lipids, in different proportions depending on the specific needs of each user. These constituents contribute to restoring the hydric balance and to boosting the barrier function. Seppic meets this need by offering a broad range of active and functional ingredients contributing to the different skin hydration mechanisms.

AQUAXYL™, the essential active for hydration

AQUAXYL™ is coming an essential and universal active for compounders looking for hydrating benefits. This patented complex of sugar derivatives has the ability to boost the essential hydration mechanisms. So it is better able to capture water (NMFs, hyaluronic acid), retain it (ceramides) and circulate it in the epidermis (through the aquaporins). AQUAXYL™ is easily incorporated into all kinds of formulations; its good safety profile means it can be used on babies' skins or sensitive skins.

AQUAXYL™ has demonstrated its efficacy in numerous formulations. What's more, its action can be reinforced using O/W emulsifiers from the MONTANOV™ range, which play a real active texture role.

Hydrating texture

The MONTANOV™ range comprises several COSMOS-approved natural emulsifiers. The range allows all types of products to be created for diverse applications with a great variety of textures, butter spray, and differentiating feel (from very light to rich and cocooning).

Also promoting liquid crystals, the MONTANOV™ contribute to creating particularly stable active emulsions. Liquid crystals are “biomimetic bilayers” of the lipid cement bilayers with a restructuring effect (reducing imperceptible water loss) and a hydrating effect.

The activity of the emulsion can be further increased by special synergies. For example, the hydrating effect provided by MONTANOV™ L is even greater and prolonged up to 48 hours after application (in vivo) when it is used in a formulation in synergy with AQUAXYL™ hydrating active.

This synergy is illustrated in the 'Melting caramel butter' formulation: a creamy and voluptuous, astonishingly refreshing when applied. The combination of MONTANOV™ L, MONTANOV™ 14 and LANOL™ P with SIMULGEL™ INS 100 sublimes the sensation of pleasure with a compact, sweetened butter texture.

EU07261 Melting caramel butter

A Water / Aqua
Triethanolamine 99%
Up to 100%
Caprylic / Capric Triglycerides
Cyclopentasiloxane and Cyclohexasiloxane
Cyclopentasiloxane and Dimethiconol
Parfum / Fragrance


Exclusive texture


Patented GELTRAP™ technology is a gel-in-oil emulsion with high water content made with EASYNOV™, a liquid W/O emulsifier combining an Alkyl Polyxyloside and a polymeric surfactant.

The oily phase containing EASYNOV™ is added on top of the preformed aqueous gel.

Once again, this gel offers hydrating and very soothing properties, without an 'oily feel'. It retains all the benefits of the continuous oily-phase emulsion, particularly resistance to water (and sweat, ideal for humid climates) and reduction of imperceptible water loss. GELTRAP™ reinforces the skin's lipid barrier and leaves the same soothing sensation as traditional emulsions but with two times less oil (optimized formulation cost).

The cool texture spreads easily with the greatest comfort and softness. The microscopic appearance reveals a very fine emulsion.

This patented technology creates more eco-friendly emulsions requiring less energy (–98%) and time (–78%), equivalent to a reduction of 4.6 kg of CO2 emissions* compared to manufacturing 5 kg of a hot-formulated Oil-in-Water (O/W) emulsion.

GELTRAP™ can be used to create different hydrating products such as skincare and face masks. Used in a mask, as in our example, the product is easy to apply while providing a cooling sensation. The GELTRAP™ texture boosts the hydrating action of AQUAXYL™ and the skin regains its ideal hydration level.

EU07324 Hydrating Cryo-Geltrap Mask

A Aqua/Water
Up to 100%
Neopentyl Glycol Diethylhexanoate


CODIAVELANE™, the Marine Moisturizing Factor

More than a benefit for the skin, hydration is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for Seppic innovators. With CODIAVELANE™ BG PF, wesource offers a hydrating active with astonishing sourcing. Codium tomentosum (or 'velvet horn' seaweed) is able to maintain a high degree of hydration under especially drying conditions when the sea recedes for several hours at low tide. The seaweed owes this hydrating power to high levels of polysaccharides, comparable to Natural Moisturizing Factors of the skin by virtue of their strong hygroscopic qualities. It is carefully hand-gathered by Breton wrack fishermen (or goémoniers) who conserve both the resource and the environment. It can only be done on 20 days per year.

The quest for simplicity in cosmetics formulations is encouraging the use of multifunctional ingredients that combine sensory qualities and efficacy. Thanks to its active textures, Seppic is becoming well-known in this field by offering solutions to meet current consumer aspirations and, through its wesource brand, by offering a broad range of hydrating actives with multiple co-benefits. Discover them in our new Hydration Book!


Elodie Brun

Beauty Care Market Manager

Léa Couillault

Emulsifying & Foaming Ingredients Product Manager

Audrey Poujade-Fauresse

Active Product Manager

* Global Cosmetic Industry, Survey: Dry Skin in the Winter is Among the Biggest Woes for Americans, 9 January 2018

** Mirabelle Belloir - Les soins du visage cherchent un nouveau souffle [Face skincare products seek a new lease of life] - LSA Commerce & Consommation - published on 08/02/2018 - viewed on 12.09.2018 - available on,279657