Do you know what goes into your skincare products? Biossance’s breakthrough discovery was the creation of a sugarcane-derived Squalene, a bioidentical match to the moisture found in our skin, providing weightless and restorative hydration while delivering other active ingredients to the skin more effectively.
“For generations, skincare companies had tried to obtain similar substances by harvesting shark livers but our vegan sugarcane-derived version is purer, more sustainable, and more reliable, and it saves more than 2 million sharks from being hunted and killed each year,” says McKenzie Bolt, Director of Global Education.
To Understand more about the clean beauty movement Unreserved interviewed McKenzie Bolt, Director of Global Education at Biossance.
What initiatives is Biossance taking to move clean beauty forward?
We expand clean beauty to include sustainable ingredient sourcing methods and product/packaging materials, ethical manufacturing processes as well as formulating clinically proven skincare products. We are moving clean beauty forward through our transparency of where we are on our journey, working with incredible groups like Oceana and Environmental Working Group to ensure we are doing the very best we can.
Did Biossance discover compelling/life-changing statistics or a moment of discovery that led to clean beauty products?
Our first industry-leading innovation was the creation of sugarcane-derived Squalane, the hydrating powerhouse within every Biossance product. Squalane is a bioidentical match to the moisture found in our skin, providing weightless and restorative hydration while delivering other active ingredients to the skin more effectively. For generations, skincare companies had tried to obtain similar substances by harvesting shark livers or turning to other unreliable natural sources, like olive, but our vegan, sugarcane-derived version is purer, more sustainable, and more reliable, and it saves more than 2 million sharks from being hunted and killed each year.
What are the benefits of Squalane oil and how has it impacted the oceans’ ecosystem?
Squalane Oil is a fantastic skincare ingredient. Because it is a bioidentical match to the moisture already found in our skin, it works with all skin types. It is also non-comedogenic so it will not clog pores. It is a lightweight and fast-absorbing oil that is fragrance-free and gentle enough for sensitive skin. Some of the amazing benefits beyond locking in weightless moisture include: improving skin elasticity, softening fine lines and wrinkles, soothing and protecting skin and improving the microbiome on the surface of the skin. Because our Berkeley scientists discovered how to engineer squalane from sustainable sugarcane, we have helped offset the killing of millions of sharks, harvested for their squalene-rich livers. Losing these apex predators has many consequences for the ocean’s ecosystem and we are so happy that we can offer a more sustainable, consistent and ethical source of this desired substance.
In Biossance you highlight using thoughtful packaging. What steps have you taken to make ensure your packaging is sustainable?
We choose recyclable and compostable bottles and tubes, and outer cartons made from FSC-certified, renewable sugarcane paper. Biossance.com shipping is carbon neutral, with each order offset by planting trees and funding reforestation efforts. We also use plastic derived from sugarcane that is recyclable in many of our newer launches, including Squalane + Glycolic Renewal Mask. We have a big goal to be zero waste by 2025 and we are also working on a packaging return redemption program.
How does a person maintain youthful-looking skin?
In my opinion, the best way to maintain youthful-looking skin is through protection and hydration. Your skin will appreciate this if you make them into daily habits. We all need to protect our skin from UV exposure, even on cloudy days. And maintaining the skin’s delicate moisture barrier with a good moisturizer is also key. I would then add in an effective but gentle cleanser, used nightly to remove not only the sunscreen but also pollution, dirt and debris.
Why are people now more concerned about what’s in their beauty products, rather than the results?
I think we will always want results, but there are other questions that we, as consumers, are now asking alongside the questions of, “what does it do?” and “will it work for me?” In the same way that we want to know where the products we purchase at the grocery store comes from, we also have a desire to know the ingredients in our beauty products. As there is more knowledge easily available to consumers, and as brands educate on their specific ingredient choices in their formulas, it is only natural that we ask more questions. This leads into sustainability questions as well, “Were the ingredients sourced sustainably” and “what are the packaging materials?” All good questions that brands should be able to answer.