Hot Ingredient: TCM Fungus for Mature/Menopausal Skin

It is important to know about up and coming personal care ingredients, so you are able to best answer potential client questions and know what works and what doesn't.

Provital Group sourced Poria cocos to create a multi-targeted active for mature skin. Gladback (INCI: Not Provided) is a purified and standardized fraction of Poria cocos, a fungus used in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

The extract is derived from the sclerocia (mycelium), which mainly contains polysaccharides and triterpenes. This fungus extract is said to improve the appearance of aging in mature and menopausal skin by: maintaining the skin's content of hyaluronic acid, increasing the expression of CD44 and reducing the expression of SPRR. These three actions are said to: increase skin thickness, increase luminosity, increase microcirculation and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

The active is said to improve the binding of hyaluronic acid in the epidermis and dermis by increasing the expression of CD44, the trans-membrane glycoprotein that acts as the main receptor of hyaluronic acid and maintains homeostatis in the skin. During aging and menopause, the expression of CD44 and hyaluronic acid reportedly diminishes, leading to a reduced skin thickness, firmness and cell renewal.

The active is also said to boost the expression of collagen IV, which maintains the skin's stability as a key element of the dermal-epidermal junction.

Finally, the active reduces the expression of SPRR, a family of small proteins rich in prolin, that are overexpressed with age, causing skin imbalances.

The active is recommended at 3-6% in formulations for mature and menopausal skin. It is soluble in aqueous solutions and insoluble in oil.


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