Cosmeceuticals are cosmetics that have additional drug-like or medicinal benefits to the body.
The latest entrant in this category is the antimicrobial lipstick that everyone is talking about.
The Organic Path Of Beauty Companies Gaining Popularity
Organic beauty products are those made using active, natural ingredients. These ingredients are supposed to make beneficial changes to the person’s body upon regular usage.
Based on this idea, a group of researchers has developed an interesting product - a lipstick that can protect against bacteria, viruses, and fungi.
Antimicrobial Lipstick: What’s The Story Here?
In December 2022, a group of researchers published a study in the ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces journal, introducing a new product called antimicrobial lipstick.
This lipstick can inactivate diverse microorganisms that could spread via the lips.
It is very common to see friends and family share lipsticks or chapsticks.
After the COVID-19 pandemic, experts are constantly searching for ways to prevent the further spread of SARS-CoV-2.
When you share lipstick, apart from this virus, you risk getting infected by multiple bacterial and fungal infections.
According to researchers who created this lipstick, the ingredients in this may help inactivate microorganisms that get passed on when you share lipsticks.
The main ingredient of interest in this lipstick is cranberry extract.
Health Benefits of Cranberries
Cranberries are a rich source of polyphenols. These are plant-based compounds that are rich in antioxidants.
Cranberry extracts are commonly used to treat urinary tract infections and have antibacterial and antiviral properties.
They also have antimutagenic, anticarcinogenic, antiangiogenic, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties, making them a very healthy fruit to snack on.
Cranberries contain the following phytochemicals.
- Flavan-3-ol monomers and dimers
- Hydroxybenzoic acids
- Hydroxycinnamic acids
The Formulation of Antimicrobial Lipstick
This antimicrobial lipstick contains cranberry extract, shea butter, vitamin E, provitamin B5, babassu oil, and avocado oil.
Thanks to the cranberry extracts, the formulation has a natural red color.
What Do The Researchers Say?
According to researchers, this bio-based lipstick can inactivate many microorganisms, including the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.
When tested, it also inactivated other types of microorganisms, including:
- Enveloped viruses such as bacteriophage Φ6
- Non-enveloped viruses, including bacteriophage MS2
- Multidrug-resistant bacteria like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, and Mycobacterium smegmatis
- Mycobacterium tuberculosis
- Candida albicans fungus
Image source: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acsami.2c19460
The above image shows tests performed with the bio-lipstick on different microorganisms and the results after one hour of contact.
Within five hours, the lipstick inactivated most of the microorganisms it interacted with.
Are Antimicrobial Lipsticks Effective?
Antimicrobial lipsticks definitely have protective benefits that regular lipsticks don’t.
Antimicrobial lipsticks can be an effective cosmeceutical solution with no compromise on qualities such as stain, texture, and application longevity.
We will need to wait and see how the cosmetic industry adapts to the idea.
- Cosmeceutical products are cosmetics with drug-like benefits to the body, and antimicrobial lipsticks are the latest in this trend.
- Recently, researchers have come up with lipsticks made from cranberry extracts that have antimicrobial properties.
- These lipsticks can inactivate many microorganisms that come in contact with lips, including enveloped and non-enveloped viruses, multi-resistant bacteria, and Candida Albicans fungus.
- According to these researchers, these lipsticks start working from the first minute of coming to contact with microorganisms. Within five hours, they inactivate most surface organisms that can cause infections and diseases.
- Over time, if cosmetic companies can adopt this idea, then antimicrobial lipsticks can offer protection against many infection-causing microorganisms and provide an aesthetic appeal.