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Skin Care Thinks Small to Deliver Big

By: Leslie Benson
Posted: August 5, 2008, from the August 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.
An array of polymer microneedles 1,000 microns tall

Mark Prausnitz of Georgia Tech’s school of chemical and biomolecular engineering, one of the professors leading a U.S. team in finding a new mass delivery method for the flu vaccine, holds an array of polymer microneedles 1,000 microns tall. This photo, taken by Gary Meek and duplicated from the cover, is used with permission from Georgia Tech.

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Whereas some companies focus on innovative delivery systems, Niadyne, Inc.’s Jacobson is one researcher who believes ... “the key feature is the benefit obtained from the product. The delivery system used to achieve the benefit is clearly secondary to a consumer.” However, even with proven, aggressive marketing claims, Freeze 24-7’s Gurfein believes that “generally, the consumers stay within their comfort zone, so the challenge on the marketing side to get them to try the product is not easy.”


All of the companies GCI magazine interviewed reiterated the importance of closely-tied R&D and marketing departments, a working relationship that has grown in recent years with the expanding demand for advanced skin care claims. “Recognizing formulators’ need to improve the stability and delivery of active ingredients and consumers’ increasing demand for multifunctional skin care products, our marketing and R&D departments worked together to identify the technology behind SatinFX … and to successfully launch it in the market,” says Amerchol’s Elias-Costrini.

“Having a great idea, knowing how to implement it and demonstrating compelling business reasons are excellent starting points when advising our marketing clients,” Lahanas says. “This approach aligns the various teams up front and defines goals and expectations, thus reducing duplication, cancellations, setting of priorities … achieving far greater speed to market.”

When his brand launched Freeze & Go in 2007, Gurfein says his marketing and R&D teams also worked closely to merge ideas—including performance-based cosmeceutical formulation, portability and visually appealing packaging. “This product hosts a specialized delivery system for smooth application, a multilayered optical complex for increased luminosity and a proprietary treatment formula that provides a protective antioxidant shield,” he says. “Potency is important. Pricing has little to do with it.”

In Germany, three technology pillars—chemistry, biotechnology and plant extracts—determine Evonik’s range of ingredients. “Performance and market-driven research within our organization is key,” Santonnat says. Such is the case with the majority of players on the skin care field.