Nutrition food

When Beauty Meets Nutrition: Food Ingredients Enter Personal Care

After a volatile and difficult period, the personal care products sector is finally regaining its commercial footing. While brands used to focus on volume and logistics in an attempt to combat panic buying in 2020, the focus is now on developing new products and capturing market share.

The personal care category has perhaps been the most unpredictable during the COVID-19 pandemic. While some product segments, such as hygiene, flourished, others struggled to sell. Across the beauty, cosmetics and personal care sector, market intelligence agency McKinsey has predicted an overall drop in sales of up to 30% as a result of the global health crisis.

Fortunately, we are now beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel and a more established and stable market, which makes it extremely important to focus on new product development. Personal care brands and formulators must innovate to capture vital consumer attention and capitalize on growing demand.

The “beautrition” trend sees ingredients traditionally used in food products find new life in personal care formulations.


The idea of ​​food ingredients taking this leap is not entirely new – olive oil is a prime example. Historically used in cooking and food production, the oil successfully entered personal care applications many years ago. Olive oil has proven to be a very effective skincare ingredient, with moisturizing and emollient effects, and is now commonly found in creams and lotions.


What’s particularly exciting now is the diversity of ingredients that are following suit. Today’s personal care product developers have access to a large catalog of potential ingredients from the food industry.


Good enough to eat ingredients shape today’s product developments, but what is driving change and what can it tell brands about the future of formulation?

In all areas, the world is moving towards a healthier lifestyle. Product categories such as organic, non-GMO or vegan, once seen as special-interest niche products, are now firmly entrenched in the mainstream. Consumers are more health conscious than ever, and reaching this audience and engaging is all about “added nutrition”. A strong consumer theme also seen in the food, health and nutrition sectors, shoppers are looking for a combination of more natural components, fewer ingredients overall and a strong nutritional profile.


Shoppers are used to providing essential nutrients to the body through food, but now treat personal care products applied to skin and hair with the same attention. What is considered healthy on the inside of the body may be just as good on the outside. Additionally, the composition of food ingredients tends to be very stable and highly compatible with the personal care product formulation process.


A powerful example of this in action is the avocado, available in oil and butter format. It’s no secret that avocado has grown in popularity in the food world, but it’s also starting to take hold in personal care applications. Avocado Butter retains the signature sweet aromas of avocado, with the versatility to wow a wide range of products.


It has a strong nutritional profile, especially for skin care applications. Avocado is a naturally abundant source of vitamins C, E, K, and B6, and is renowned for its powerful hydration and ability to lock moisture into the skin.

Shopping behavior trends demonstrate that the conscious consumer is looking for more natural ingredients than synthetic ones. Natural ingredients are simply considered more sustainable, eco-friendly and ethical than synthetic chemicals and compounds.


A synthetic ingredient could be made in an extremely sustainable way, but unfortunately the semantic baggage that comes with the term “synthetic” means that it will often be considered less environmentally friendly than ingredients derived from natural sources.


From butters and body lotions to shampoos and conditioners, natural ingredients are proving beneficial in-store as consumers pay more attention to ingredient lists. Similarly, buyers are placing more emphasis on the origin and traceability of ingredients, wanting to know more about the origin of their products. In turn, this helps them build a more complete picture of the brand and its sustainability credentials.


Research and consultancy firm Kline & Company previously highlighted “natural” as the most important trend in the entire personal care industry. We are now seeing what effect this is having on brand competition, especially in the wake of an uncertain retail environment where brands must seize every available opportunity to differentiate themselves.


The natural power of plant-based ingredients over synthetic or synthesized additives is seen very clearly in personal care, especially for brands looking to get creative with formulations. We know macadamia nuts as a convenient snack with a sweet, buttery flavor and a distinctly creamy aroma. However, macadamia oil also proves to be an attractive natural addition to personal care formulations; rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids with the perfect 1:1 ratio.


Popular uses for macadamia nut oil include body and face moisturizers , massage and therapeutic oils. The oil can imbue products with the appealing qualities of the nut without the need for synthetic components. Macadamia oil offers product developers an innovative natural moisturizer and emollient, meeting consumer demand for more natural and less synthetic.

With the heightened stress of lockdown and the many challenges that come with it, premium products have grown in popularity as consumers seek escape and an experience, not just a product. The shift from food ingredients to personal care applications opens up a whole new avenue of creativity for product developers. The sweet flavors and aromas of food products can be infused with luxurious personal care products for simple line extensions, as well as for the development of new lines.


A great example of the embellishment trend is coffee butter. A rising star in personal care formulations, coffee beans offer a number of new benefits. Butter retains the distinctive, appealing aroma of freshly roasted coffee, in a soft, supple butter form from a rheology-modified base. Created by hydrogenating oil from pressed coffee beans, the fantastic aroma isn’t the ingredient’s only strength. Very moisturizing, coffee butter is able to protect and repair the skin and is popular in anti-aging and sensitive skin. soap formulations. In particular, butter does not contain caffeine, because caffeine is a the water – soluble component of the bean.


In summary, beauty is growing in popularity as it responds head-on to a number of consumer trends in harmony. The combination of solid nutrition, “natural” thinking and innovation is fueling the transition from food markets to personal care markets. Brands that can harness food ingredients and use their diverse advantages as a competitive advantage to drive innovation in personal care products will find strong business opportunities.


At Kerfoot Group, our specialty is helping formulators and brand owners boost product development, harnessing the best of nature. Supporting the personal care, food, health and nutrition sectors with our portfolio of oils, ingredients and soap bases, our team of technical experts is backed by strong logistics and warehousing to complete projects of all sizes and complexities.


Could beautification be the next lucrative direction for your personal care line?


Founded in 1980, Kerfoot, an Avril group company, is a global supplier of bulk and packaged, refined and specialty oils. With a portfolio of over 500 products, Kerfoot is a leading sourcing partner for brands, manufacturers and distributors in the food and personal care markets. Kerfoot has over 130 employees operating from its head office in Northallerton and three sites in Goole, Yorkshire, UK. The Kerfoot corporate values ​​of respect, boldness and performance ensure that customer focus and supply chain flexibility are at the forefront of Kerfoot’s business philosophy. For more information: www.kerfootgroup.co.uk