Silicones Bring Multifunctional Performance to Sun Care

October 2, 2006 | Contact Author | By: Isabelle Van Reeth, Stéphanie Postiaux and Heidi Van Dort, Dow Corning
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Keywords: silicone acrylate copolymer | silicone carbinol | silicone elastomer | silicone | SPF | sun care | sunscreen | UV | wash-off resistance

Abstract: Silicones give formulators choices for a variety of high-performance sun care products and delivery systems. Silicones can boost SPF, add wash-off resistance and help prevent sand from sticking to the skin.

Amidst heightened awareness over the effects of the sun on skin, the world sun care market, the fastest-growing personal care sector, rose 43% in retail value between 2000 and 2005. Sales reached US$5.47 billion in 2005, with Western Europe and North America contributing US$2.3 billion and US$1.2 billion respectively. The compound annual growth rate over this period was about 7.4%.

This increase reflects consumers’ concern about skin cancer, premature aging and an interest in a broader variety of sun care product forms. Demand is increasing for protective sun products as well as those developed for self-tanning and after-sun, and focus has turned to specialty formulations developed for children or those that provide extra benefits such as antiaging ingredients, vitamins, scents, quick-drying characteristics, insect repellency and even sheen or glittery effects on the skin. In the hair care segment, an increasing number of sun care products include sunscreens that aid color retention by protecting hair from UV radiation. But no matter how novel sun care products become, consumers know what they want in terms of the fundamentals: UVB and UVA protection, high SPF, photostability, safe and nonirritating products, water-resistance and good aesthetics—all at a reasonable cost.