Saturday, August 9, 2014

Oh, patents! Waterproof makeup remover

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann

 Smudgeproof and waterproof makeup are two very desirable make-up properties. Waterproof so that you can swim and sweat under the tropical sun; dance and sweat at a disco party; or work under the limelight many hours a day if you are an actress or actor, a performer or a model. Smudgeproof so the make-up resists the natural oils of the skin. Thus, there are make-up compositions of all sorts (for lips, eyes and face) that are effectively and pleasantly waterproof, smudgeproof and long lasting. Problem solved and patented.

 However, once the above dysfunctions are resolved in oil-based waterproof formulations, it also becomes very difficult to remove waterproof make-up with conventional non-waterproof make-up remover. Long lasting and waterproof makeup really works, and without a make-up remover designed specifically for removing of it, you will experience serious difficulty removing the make-up… (Barbery-Coulon, 2014)

 In comes L’Oréal, the French cosmetics giant: a recent champion of alternatives to animal testing, with a research agenda committed to the diversity of beauty, including ethnic and age differences in traditional skin or hair types; a commitment to the principles of green chemistry and responsible sourcing of raw materials; a workforce that boasts 70 % women (!), and both fellowship and foundation programs that support women in the sciences.

 An early L’Oréal make-up remover for Waterproof (WP) and Non-Waterproof make-up (NWP) is US5165917 titled Eye make-up remover with two separate phases. The patent discloses a composition that is both effective and pleasant or comfortable for removing WP and NWP eye makeup.  The composition disclosed includes two synergistic phases: an aqueous phase with at least one surfactant, and an oily phase with at least one cosmetic oil. Experimentation results are also presented to highlight both the effectiveness (make-up removal) and cosmetic properties (comfort and appearance) afforded by various formulations, with evidence in support of a 70:30 or 60:40 ratio of the two phases.

 The abstract for US5165917 titled Eye make-up remover with two separate phases is included below with an image of the marketed product, l’Oréal Artiste long lasting and water proof eye make-up remover:

A composition suitable for effective and comfortable removal of both waterproof and non-waterproof eye makeup is disclosed which includes an aqueous phase containing at least one surfactant and an oily phase containing at least one cosmetic oil. The surfactant concentration may be up to 3 wt % of the total weight of the composition. The weight ratio of the aqueous phase and the oily phase may be from 30:70 to 60:40. [US5165917]

Barbery-Coulon, L. (2014).Mascara Waterproof. Le Magazine du Monde. Le Monde, 8-8-2014.
Research and innovation in key figures
 Paperclip-listed …

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