Behind the science – Of Eucerin DermoPURIFYER

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A new skincare approach for acne-prone skin

Acne is not simply a skin condition. As it mainly affects the face, it can affect sufferers’ self-confidence and self-esteem, particularly during puberty when acne is most prevalent. While medical treatments do exist, these can have side effects, such as drying out skin, and may not be necessary for everyone with acne-prone skin. Eucerin has developed a range of dermo-cosmetics for impure skin that can be used alongside standard acne medication, or on their own.

In developing optimum skin care for acne-prone skin, Eucerin researchers needed to address the four factors responsible for the symptoms: hyperkeratosis (disrupted skin cell shedding), seborrhea (increased sebum production), microbial colonisation (increased bacteria proliferation) and inflammation of skin.

Developing a unique combination of active ingredients

Our objective was to identify active ingredients that could be combined to address all four factors,

said Frank Rippke, MD, Head of Scientific Management Eucerin.

“The body’s own amino acid, L-carnitine, was known to accelerate the metabolism of fatty acids and reduce their availability for sebum formation. Twenty-one female volunteers (aged 22 to 56 years) with oily and shiny facial skin were enrolled in a controlled, randomised study. Volunteers applied a cosmetic formulation containing 2% L-carnitine, or the respective vehicle, in a split-face design twice daily (morning and evening). The results show that after three weeks of treatment, L-carnitine significantly decreased the sebum secretion score compared to the vehicle control.”

Anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial ingredients

We also conducted in vitro and in vivo tests to verify the clinical efficacy of Licochalcone A in acute and chronic inflammatory skin conditions.

“To combat microbial colonisation, we tested the anti-bacterial effects of Decandiol in vitro. In this test, human skin cells were treated either with vehicle or verum for 20, 60 or 180 minutes. After treating, these were plated on agarplates and cultivated for five days before colonies were counted.

“We put this unique combination of active ingredients to the test and the results were outstanding,” said Frank Rippke, “Decandiol was found to be extremely effective in reducing bacteria.”

Testing the active ingredient combination

At the University Hospital in Lübeck, Germany, we recruited 60 volunteers, aged 14-40 (40 female, 20 male) with mild to moderately severe acne. Each had 10-25 inflammatory lesions - papules, pustules, noduli - in the facial area.

In an 8-week double-blind, randomised, vehicle-controlled study, participants applied test products (verum or vehicle) twice daily on their faces. No other skin care products, topical or systemic acne medications were applied and the only skin cleansing products used were Eucerin DermoPURIFYER Cleanser and Eucerin DermoPURIFYER Toner.

The clinical results were extremely encouraging, with a significant reduction of inflammatory lesions and sebum and, equally important, a pronounced improvement in quality of life in the verum sample

Summarising the findings, Frank Rippke said: “Our goal was to find active ingredients that could tackle all four symptoms of acne. We were delighted with the results produced by our unique combination of anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and sebum-regulating ingredients.”