Editor's Note: Vivid Possibilities


Let your cosmetic imagination run wild. Envision spectacular, glowing, even holographic color effects, painted in dreamlike, indescribable shades. Here, hypothetical illusions of perfection and invisibility are mirrored by magical pigments—and FDA-approved, no less.

This last part seems to be the hang-up, which is a key lesson I learned in my interview with color expert Jane Hollenberg. I support protecting the consumer as much as anyone else, but it’s shame it took 30 years just to get Carbon Black back. And now, new sources for natural pigments are being uncovered,1, 2 which consumers would be eating up, but the cost of approving these would outweigh the benefits the cosmetics industry could reap. We would need a larger, pigment-consuming industry partner like automotive. But as Hollenberg explained to me, “the pigments they use would need to remain very stable.”

So until then, the industry has been resizing and reshaping existing pigments, layering them in new ways on new vehicles, and even devising novel applicators to fine-tune the end results. How is this working out for us? Well, as Jiménez and Guzmán Alfonso discovered, in eye-tracking experiments, the soft focus effects of sample color formulas successfully turned attention away from wrinkles. And, using L*C*h* color parameters, Kanda et al. effectively blended pigments for foundations that better match black skin tones. In fact, their approach was too successful; products looked so natural they did not provide enough coverage. Future work will find a happy medium between the two.

Ng Hui et al. focused on the vehicle rather than pigments. Here, they explore Mixture Design to optimize the wax/oil ratio of lipsticks for the best breaking point, softening point and glide.

Just like the industry, this issue of Cosmetics & Toiletries brings you its best to advance color cosmetic development—within regulatory constraints. We hope it paints for you new, vivid and visionary possibilities.

  1. http://www.cosmeticsandtoiletries.com/research/universitydata/Sky-Blues-the-Limit-with-Novel-Pigment-Discovery-413407413.html
  2. http://www.cosmeticsandtoiletries.com/research/biology/Color-Me-Red-Bacterially-Producing-Natural-Pigments-413632423.html
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