Freely express emotions while preserving beauty

By Cristina Bonell, Marine Vincendet, Belén Aguirre, Gemma Mola, Raquel Delgado of Lipotec 

Younger consumers are interested in ‘prejuvenation’ treatments – cosmetic products and minimally invasive procedures – to reverse the signs of ageing and prevent future expression lines or wrinkles. This trend has inspired Lubrizol Life Science Beauty to develop an exciting alternative based on its time-tested Argireline peptide. 

Savannah Argireline Youth Peptide P&C Review

The beauty industry is being transformed by younger generations. They are digital natives who investigate the science of cosmetic ingredients and biological mechanisms leading to skin concerns. One area of great interest on social media is the mechanism of action leading to wrinkle formation. 

These days, younger consumers are aware that repeated facial movements produced by daily expressions cause facial muscles to contract, leading to the increased visibility of expression wrinkles later in life. Indeed, there is some evidence to suggest that inhibiting this effect at an early stage may function as a preventative solution to slow down the signs of ageing. As a result, Lubrizol Life Science Beauty has created a new oil soluble peptide active ingredient that has been specifically designed and tested to meet the unique needs of younger consumers in terms of efficacy claims, usage habits and formulation formats. 

An inverse micelle delivery system

The development of the new peptide ingredient has leveraged the benefits of the patent protected inverse micelle delivery system developed by Lubrizol Life Science. The inner layer of the inverse micelles is hydrophilic and has good affinity with hydrophilic peptides, allowing an adequate loading of solubilised active molecules. The outer layer is hydrophobic and disperses well in the oily system. The resulting product enables formulators to create transparent oily systems with a water soluble active. 

This delivery system also allows formulators to incorporate active ingredients more easily in water-in-oil emulsions, using simple mixing without high temperatures or shear to add an active ingredient to the outer oily phase. 

Clinical efficacy of the new active

A clinical test was carried out on 65 male and female volunteers of Caucasian and Latin American descent with an age range of between 19 and 35. These volunteers were divided in two different groups: 

  1. A group using makeup foundation containing 2% of the active ingredient. 
  2. A group using a makeup foundation without any active ingredient. 

The makeup foundation was applied once per day, for 28 days. At day 0 and after 28 days of treatment, the volunteers were asked to give their maximum smile in front of the camera to evaluate skin roughness and wrinkle area in the crow’s feet zone while holding the expression. 

Furthermore, the coefficient of wrinkles in the same area was evaluated but without any expressive emotion. 

Wrinkle improvement with no loss of smile

Skin roughness (Sa) and the wrinkle are (%) within the crow’s feet zone were assessed using a 3D microtopography imaging system based on fringe projection (PRIMOS). Both parameters were determined before and after 28 days of treatment. A decrease in skin roughness and the wrinkle area parameter indicated an improvement in the appearance of expression wrinkles. 

Figure 1: A) Variation (%) in the skin roughness parameter obtained after 28 days of product application (**p<0.01 vs initial time) vs placebo with a smile expression. Student’s t test was used after checking the normality distributions by a Shapiro-Wilk test. B) PRIMOS images of a volunteer smiling before and after 28 days of treatment with active ingredient

In figure 1 (above), the results show a statistically significant decrease of the roughness parameter by 6.8% on average after 28 days of treatment, with respect to initial time. 

At both times in the study, as shown in the volunteer images, there was a prominent improvement in the crow’s feet area when smiling. 

Figure 2 (below) includes results of the wrinkle area in the crow’s feet zone when smiling with respect to initial time. Volunteers who applied the active foundation showed a statistically significant decrease in wrinkles by 19.9% after 28 days of treatment. The images of a young male volunteer show how the visibility of the wrinkles in this area improved after the treatment, when holding the same smile expression, at both times of the study. 

Figure 2: A) Variation (%) in skin wrinkle area obtained after 28 days of product application (****p<0.0001 vs initial time) vs placebo with a smile expression. Student’s t test was used after checking the normality distributions with a Shapiro-Wilk test. B) Macroscopic images of a volunteer smiling, before and after 28 days of treatment with the active ingredient

AI to quantify a bigger smile

In the beauty industry, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being used more and more for research and innovation. Algorithms can learn from data and help us explore new ways of analysis. Lubrizol Life Science Beauty has developed a proprietary smile rating technology using a deep learning-based framework that is able to objectively recognise and quantify the emotions of volunteers. 

As shown in figure 3, this technology classifies facial images into three states: 

  1. Neutral 
  2. Happy 
  3. Very happy. 
Figure 3: Frame images of a volunteer analysed with the proprietary smile rating technology method at three different states after the treatment. Workflow of technology process

The technology detects the face from frames of a video, then predicts the emotion of the face with a trained convolutional neural network (CNN) to compute a smile grade. Previously, the CNN was trained with nearly 3 000 images extracted from videos recorded in previous studies conducted by Lipotec. 

To evaluate the grade of the volunteer’s happiness, they were asked to smile according to the level of satisfaction of their skin after the treatment. Videos about their reaction were taken with a high-resolution camera (Canon Rebel T4i) and analysed with the proprietary smile rating technology. The results showed that, at the end of the study, volunteers who used the active ingredient expressed a smile that was 22% bigger than volunteers in the placebo group. 


Argireline® YOUth peptide is an oil-soluble version of the well-known Argireline peptide, thanks to the LipoClear inverse micelle delivery system. It has been shown to improve the skin of the crow’s feet area, most noticeable when smiling. It could also prevent the emergence of expression wrinkles that might appear in the future, without negatively affecting beautiful facial expressions. 

Argireline YOUth peptide minimises the appearance of expression wrinkles on the areas of greatest concern to younger generations, such as the forehead, crow’s feet, nasolabial folds and neck lines. The efficacy of this peptide has been shown to make users feel happier with their skin, leading to greater self-confidence daily. 

Available in South Africa from Savannah Fine Chemicals, Argireline YOUth peptide is ideal for oil-based and makeup formulations. 

Savannah Argireline Youth Peptide P&C Review

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Pharmaceutical & Cosmetic Review May 2023

Healthy skin matters in the May edition of P&C Review. We also explore packaging automation, solutions for vaccine manufacturing, cold process ingredients for personal care applications and innovation in the sun care category.

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