Personal care and hygiene are an indispensable part of a Consumer's lifestyle and routine. Hygiene & Skin Care directly influences Well-being and longevity as the Skin is the body's largest organ. The Skin's function is to protect against physical injury, microbes, chemical agents and to prevent fluid & water loss from the body.
Bathing is an essential hygiene practice, and Soap has been the core of the bathing routine. The evolution of soaps from ashes to modern shower gels is an interesting story. Today, various rinse-off personal care products are available for every need with development and innovation.
How did soaps come into existence?
Soaps have been the oldest & widely accepted format of body cleansing. The discovery of Soap dates back to 2800 BC. Ash, clay, or mud was used to scrub the body, followed by anointing the body with oil. Soap got its name from an ancient Roman legend about Mount Sapo. Rain on the mountain would mix animal fat and ashes, resulting in a clay mixture with cleaning properties. As time passed, humans could now synthesize Soap, and Soapmaking became a popular art, especially in the Americas. The process is known as Saponification. Saponification is an exothermic chemical reaction that occurs when fats or oils (fatty acids) come into contact with lye, a base. In this reaction, the triglyceride units of fats react with sodium hydroxide or potassium hydroxide and are converted to Soap and glycerol.
Features of Soap:
The essential features of Soap are:
- Good cleansing
- Rich and copious foaming
- Hard structure
The presence of glycerin renders some moisturization properties to soaps. A good soap should have lower cracking and mush (slimy paste formed on the Soap's surface when it comes in contact with water). Earlier, cleansing was perceived to be a basic need. Hence, soaps were evaluated based on TFM (Total Fatty Matter), an indicator of the Soap's total cleansing ingredients and its quality.
The consumer has evolved and is more aware; he expects more than just cleaning from his regular Soap. Consumers are looking for soaps that maintain skin health and hygiene, nourishment, protection from external pollutants, germs, dirt, control damage, and enhance skin rejuvenation. Therefore, product properties like pH, the product's composition, type of cleansing ingredients, and mild ingredients apart from the traditional metrics like cleansing, foaming, rinsing, moisturization, and sensory have gained prominence.
The drawbacks of traditional soaps and their harmful effects on Skin are now widely reported, primary being: having alkaline pH and intense cleansing. Alkaline cleansers potentially can harm the outermost layer of our Skin's epidermis (called the stratum corneum). These can lead to protein denaturation, lipid solubilization, disturbance in the Skin's intact structure, and loss of skin flora, which undermine its natural barrier function. Consumers commonly experience skin dryness, redness, & irritation as a result of this. In extreme cases, this can even lead to skin disorders.
Thus, there is a need for bathing bars that provide good cleansing and remain mild to the Skin. To cater to the fast-paced consumer needs, Bar soaps of today need to offer more value-added benefits to their consumers. The various segments of the new-age consumers are:
- Medicated soaps for the Compromised Skin
- Soap Bars for Baby's Sensitive Skin,
- Luxurious soaps for enhanced skin care.
Syndets – Cleansing bars with Synthetic Detergents – cater to all these needs and more.
Syndet is a complex mixture of surfactants, emollients, plasticizers, binding & bulking agents, nourishing actives, and many other functional ingredients, well balanced to deliver a holistic bathing and skincare experience. Significant components of Syndets are Mild Surfactants and Acyl Isethionates- an ingredient, which is the strength of Galaxy. They are incredibly mild, high foaming, moisturizing and effective cleansers. Syndet cleansing bars, by their composition and properties, provide good cleansing and keep Skin healthy. They have acidic to neutral pH, typically ranging from 5 to 7.5 units.
Syndets have a lower tendency to alter skin pH.
The Skin has acidic pH in the range of 4.7 – 6 units. When Skin comes in contact with an alkaline solution during cleansing, there is an alteration of skin pH. When this happens, the Skin swells and loses its natural oils & lipids. This exposes the Skin to external agents.
One must note that water is neutral and has a pH of 7, so every time you bathe with just water, your Skin undergoes the restoration process. But the extent of skin pH alteration is significantly greater in Soap, which has an alkaline pH (10 to 10.5) and takes a long time to restore. The wider the pH difference between the Soap and the Skin, the higher the restoration time will be. Therefore, the Skin will remain exposed to external agents disrupting skin balance for a long time, resulting in itchy, ageing, or flaky Skin over time.
Syndet based bathing bars have acidic pH and hence have a relatively lesser alteration to skin pH. The skin pH gets quickly restored, keeping the skin structure intact.
*Graphical representation from an in-house study conducted with a panel of N=10, measuring pH post wash/application on Asian Forearm skin, measured using Skin pH meter probe.
Syndets maintain/enhance skin hydration.
There is the evaporation of water through our Skin's stratum corneum. The extent of evaporation depends on many factors. One of the most critical factors is Skin's structural integrity through its components – representatively called 'Natural Moisturizing Factor' (NMF). With a strong barrier, a healthy skin structure keeps Skin hydrated. Loss of lipids, proteins, and NMF causes loss of moisture leading to skin dryness and, in extreme cases or overtime, leads to atopic skin dermatitis.
Syndets have a lesser potential for the dissolution of protein and lipids because of their composition and action mechanism. It instead nourishes the Skin with fatty acids, emollients, and moisturizers, strengthening the Skin & maintaining its structure, hydration levels, and overall flora.
Consumers experience this through skin softness, smoothness, and absence of irritation post-wash with Syndets. This experience is quite similar to that of moisturization of Skin through creams.
*Graphical representation from an in-house study conducted with a panel of N=10, measuring skin hydration over multiple applications on Asian Forearm skin, measured using Corneometer probe
*Graphical representation from in-house Sensory Evaluation study [in vivo] conducted with a panel of N=10
Sensory evaluation of skin post washing with Soap and Syndet brings out the difference clearly and suggesting Holistic Sensorial Experience that consumers will have with Syndets
While multiple methods can evaluate the mildness of Syndet, one standard method is Zein Value determination, which indicates if a cleanser is an irritant and solubilizes proteins. Lower the Zein value, lower the skin irritation factor. A Product with a Zein value less than 200 is considered non-irritating; 200 to 400 is slightly irritating and higher than 400 is irritating to the Skin. Syndets have a Zein value lesser than 200, while Soaps have a Zein value greater than 400, indicating the mildness of Syndets.
Other advantageous properties of Syndet include
- Creamy, luxurious lather
- Effective cleansing and foaming even in Hard Water
- Suitable for cleansing dry and sensitive Skin
- Effective delivery & stability of medicated or treatment actives
- Excellent fragrance release
An excellent choice for the planet:
Syndets solid bars provide an alternative to liquid formats of various cleansing applications while delivering the same properties and benefits. In solid format, transportation is more efficient as water, which is the primary ingredient in most configurations, is not present. Solid formats can be packaged without plastic and also consume less water. Syndet is, therefore, a value beneficial and sustainable option!!
Our unmatched Competencies for Syndet Innovation Platform
Galaxy Surfactants Ltd. developed several Syndet Noodles grades with varied benefits based on application studies and clinical tests with in-house availability of key ingredients such as Amino Acid Surfactants, Isethionates, and other beneficial ingredients. Galaxy Syndets are cruelty-free and are not tested on animals. To offer this to your customers too, write to us at email@example.com