The Provital Group has created an active that controls the pH of skin to reduce its reactivity. Caresoft (INCI: Propanediol (and) Glycerin (and) Water (aqua) (and) Curculigo Orchioides Root Extract) was created specifically for sensitive skin.
The active in the compound is derived from Curculigo orchioides, an herbaceous, tuberous plant widely distributed in India. The rootstock of the plant bears several fleshy lateral roots (rhizomes), from which the extract was taken.
According to the company, 70% of women believe they have sensitive skin, and studies have shown that people with skin barrier deficiencies (i.e., sensitive skin, atopic dermatitis, etc.) have a higher skin pH. In response, the compound is said to modulate the transmembrane protein NHE1, which regulates extracellular pH to keep skin at an acidic level.
In in vitro testing, the company found that the compound increased NHE1 expression by 58% after 24 hr and 79% after 48 hr. This increase in NHE1 expression is said to decrease the pH of the stratum corneum, leading to increased lipid processing enzyme activity and serine protease activity. The enzyme activity allows for barrier function recovery, while a decrease in serine protease activity allows for better stratum corneum integrity.
The active is recommended at 3–5% in makeup, shaving ranges, intimate hygiene, products for babies and hair care for sensitive scalps.