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Skincare formulations: Uncovering the stabilizing properties of fucoidan

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Moisturisers, cleansers and other skincare formulations are often composed of colloidal suspensions. Bioactive ingredients, mineral oxides, oils and other additives are held in suspension by the addition of surfactants and stabilizers.

The stability of a new product can determine both its sensory properties and its final economic value. Consumers are demanding certified organic, non-toxic and environmentally friendly products that can permanently replace synthetic substitutes. In complex formulation systems each component can interact with others changing the properties of the whole system. The interactions between stabilisers and surfactants are particularly critical.

New research investigated the stabilizing properties of fucoidan in the presence of a commonly utilized cationic surfactant. The study showed that fucoidan could be successfully used as a stabilizer in formulations where surfactants are required. Alumina is a common mineral agent used to enhance sensory properties in skincare products and needs to be held in suspension. The research showed that fucoidan is a versatile stabilizing agent, adsorbing on alumina surfaces. It was established that fucoidan possesses pH tolerant stabilizing efficiency.

Although fucoidan is more commonly included in skincare formulations as a bioactive agent, these stabilizing properties offer additional benefits in colloidal suspensions.  

The full paper, ‘Stabilizing properties of fucoidan for the alumina suspension containing the cationic surfactant’, published in Carbohydrate Polymers is available here.

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