Plant-Based Microcapsules Unveil A Promise Of Fresh Fragrance In Beauty

392 wordsPublished On: March 25th, 2024

Xampla, a spin-out from Cambridge University, has developed plant-based microcapsules that offer exciting opportunities for innovation in fragrance. The principal scientist of the company states that these microcapsules enable the achievement of scent blooms that were previously nearly impossible to attain. In January 2024, Xampla secured US million [EUR6.45 million], allowing it to advance the broader development of its next-generation plant-based materials, named Morro. This innovative range is made from various plant proteins, including pea and potato, and utilizes patented technology to produce natural and fully biodegradable microcapsules, coatings, edible films, and soluble films. These products cater to the beauty, home care, nutrition, food, and beverage industries.

The specific microcapsule product, Morro, is designed to replace synthetic encapsulation in beauty, home, and nutraceutical formulations, thus eliminating the potential use of microplastics. According to Lynette Holland, the principal scientist at Xampla, this development could be a significant game-changer, offering new opportunities, especially for brands where the recognition of their signature fragrance is crucial.

The plant-based microcapsules enable formulators to encapsulate a portion of fragrance within a formula, allowing it to release a powerful scent “bloom” upon use. This innovative technology can be incorporated into various products such as face creams, body creams, conditioners, and deodorants, enhancing the overall liking and performance of the products.

The entire Morro brand, including the plant-based microcapsules, is the result of over 15 years of scientific research into proteins and biopolymers. Much of this research was led by Professor Tuomas Knowles at the University of Cambridge. Xampla has successfully developed these microcapsules to be used across a wide array of mixtures and ingredients in fragrance, preserving the perfumer’s palette intact.

Holland also mentions the strong interest from FMCG companies in the biodegradable and plant-based alternative, as consumers increasingly demand sustainable products. Moreover, Xampla is working on evolving the ingredient sourcing front to ensure that materials are readily available and not competing with food production.

In terms of applications, while the microcapsules are currently suitable for water-based fragrances, topical skin and body care formulations, hair conditioners, and deodorants, Xampla aims to refine them for use in traditional alcohol-based fine fragrances in the future.

Lastly, Xampla is working on a diverse portfolio within the Morro brand, including speciality microcapsules for fragrances and beauty actives, nutraceutical and vitamin microcapsules, as well as films and coatings, with ongoing research and development in progress.

Share this article

Follow us

A quick overview of the topics covered in this article.

Keeping In Touch

Stay informed about special offers, promotions, and exclusive deals for newsletter subscribers.

Latest articles