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Seeking the Magic to Delight Consumers

By: Denise Petersen
Posted: December 6, 2010, from the December 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

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When the magician pulls a scarf out of his top pocket, everyone is surprised. But when 50 more scarves emerge, the audience is truly delighted. Brands seeking to astonish their customers in the same way can utilize phase inversion temperature (PIT) formulation technology. PIT formulations use a carefully balanced blend of emulsifiers, emollients and processing techniques to create stable emulsions. [Additional information about emulsions is available in the Chemical Reaction column in the July 2010 issue’s “The Mysteries of R&D, Part I” by Art Rich, PhD.] It also makes it possible to develop unique formulations—from sprayable systems to clear solids.

Cognis’ Super Silky Solid with arganyl is an example of a PIT-based formulation that is ultra silky and light. It has a glossy pearlescent appearance, yet doesn’t feel tacky, thanks to shea butter. The butter provides a lasting soft and pleasant skin feel, as well as moisturizing benefits.

And it is possible to surprise consumers beyond the mentioned attributes. Even with a light feel, lotions such as Super Silky Solid can have a deep cosmetic effect with additional ingredients. Arganyl, in this example, an extract from the leaves of the Moroccan argan tree, provides an anti-free radical and anti-aging effect.

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SWOP Technology: Quick Application but Long-lasting Care

One of the most common magic tricks involves putting a coin in one place only to have it reappear somewhere completely different. Cognis’ SWitch Oil Phase (SWOP) technology begins with an oil-in-water (o/w) formulation that becomes a water-in-oil (w/o) formulation when rubbed into the skin. This allows brands to promise the best of both worlds in their claims: It is easy to apply and has a light feel, but when it “swops” over, it becomes water and transfer-resistant and delivers long-lasting moisturization. SWOP technology is ideal for sun care products, and can also be used for liquid foundations that are silky-smooth to apply, transfer-resistant and perfect for all-day wear.

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