POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACTS: RESTORE, REJUVENATE, AND REVITALIZE
- Powdered Botanical Extracts are concentrates of bioactive phytochemicals extracted by soaking the herb in a solvent that is later evaporated.
- Some powders can reach up to 10 times the concentration of the original herb.
- Crop conditions, including climate patterns, moisture levels, and sun exposure can impact the quality of powdered and liquid botanical extracts. To remain consistent in potency and quality, the extracts must be standardized.
- Powdered botanical extracts makes it easy and efficient for cosmetic crafters to incorporate beautiful colors, aromas, and textures to personal care products.
- Many Powder Botanical Extracts also contain antioxidant and antibacterial properties when applied topically.
HISTORY OF BOTANICAL EXTRACTS
Research suggests that humans have used plant extracts for medicinal purposes for as long as humanity itself has existed. The practice of Shamanism, a type of spirit medicine, originated the knowledge of the plants' curative properties. Some Shamans retrieved knowledge about certain plants and their healing techniques by intuitively communicating with what were known as "plant teachers". The Egyptian Ebers Papyrus is one of the oldest written records of medicinal plants, dating to 1500 B.C.E. By 2700 B.C.E., herbs were being used in a more scientific context in China. While in India, the Charaka Samhita dates 700 B.C.E. and contains documents of more than 300 medicinal plants that were used.
According to Ayurvedic theory, illness is considered an imbalance, and herbs and certain dietary practices were used to restore the body to its natural state. During the Middle Ages, frequent overlapping occurred between the study of botany and medicine. The Greek botanical compilations were considered the blueprint that the monks followed to prepare herbals with medicinal properties derived by plants.
The reliance on botanical extracts as treatment shifted dramatically in 1803 when morphine became one of the first drugs to be isolated from a plant. By 1852, scientists synthesized the active ingredient salicine from willow bark. Over the next 150 years, mainstream medicine became increasingly separate from holistic practices since medical practitioners wanted to be perceived as rational and scientific. By the 1990's, botanical extracts in medicine saw an increase in demand as people looked for a more natural alternative to harsh, synthetic drugs. According to Nutraceuticals World, the global retail sale of dietary supplements containing botanical extracts was over $25 billion by 2010.
Today, natural extracts are added to cosmetic formulas such as soaps, lotions, creams, toners, shampoos, and conditioners. Formulators opt for powder and liquid botanical extracts for their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antimicrobial properties. Powdered extracts can also add naturally stunning hues to personal care products.
WHAT EXACTLY ARE POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACT? HOW DO THEY COMPARE TO LIQUID BOTANICAL EXTRACTS?
Botanical Extracts are plant materials with highly condensed therapeutic properties. They can be either dried or liquid forms that contains the desired proportions of minerals, vitamins, and phytochemicals. In botanical extraction, the plant (or various plant parts such as the leaves, seeds, twigs, berries, or roots) are placed within a specific solvent that can dissolve the required constituents. The resulting mixture can then be isolated or processed further to obtain the final extract. Powder Botanical Extracts are desirable amongst cosmetic formulators for their anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial properties. Due to their strong concentration and absorption rate, powdered botanicals may be found lower on the ingredient list.
Each plant has thousands of components that have a multitude of benefits, which vary in importance and effectiveness. The plant will be studied for its naturally occurring properties, and specific parts of the plant will be extracted to achieve a specific benefit. Botanicals derived from plants contain high amounts of phenols, a chemical compound that behaves as an antioxidant by combating free radicals and oxidative damage. Phenols found in plants may be the contributing factor to the potency of botanical extracts. Since plants and flowers need to survive the harmful UV rays, botanical extracts may provide the same benefits when applied to the skin.
Powder Botanical Extracts come in a variety of concentrations; some are concentrated up to 10 times from its original herb. The concentration of a botanical extract is typically included as a ratio in the extract's title.
BENEFITS OF POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACTS
Over the last two decades, the skincare, haircare, and cosmeceutical industries have experienced a return to traditional formulations due to the increased demand for safer, naturally derived ingredients. Conventional personal care products often include harsh chemicals that can be detrimental to one's health and cause adverse effects after prolonged use. Public awareness of this knowledge is becoming more accessible and accepted, causing new and existing cosmetic brands to reevaluate their formulations and shift accordingly.
Botanical extracts of all forms and consistencies have provided formulators with convenience and ease when crafting unique, natural personal care products. While each type of botanical extract serves different purposes, Powder Botanical Extracts provide unique benefits for skin and hair, including:
Beautiful Colors - From the bright pink of Rosehip Botanical Extract to the mossy sage of Cucumber Peel, to the deep wine shade of Grapeseed, our Powder Botanical Extracts come in stunning hues for beautifying your personal care products.
Naturally Emolliating - Our Powder Botanical Extracts are believed to possess soothing properties that penetrate the skin and hair when blended into a moisturizing formula.
Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial - A little goes a long way! Due to their high concentration, Powder Botanical Extracts possess qualities that can dramatically improve hair and skin health when applied topically.
Rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins, polyphenols, and carotenoids - These elements work synergistically to rejuvenate tired skin and reveal a healthy complexion.
A great option for adding texture and decoration - Add to soaps, body washes, lotions, shampoos, and conditioners.
THE IMPORTANCE OF STANDARDIZATION
Natural botanical extracts, as well as their active constituents, are affected by crop conditions such as weather patterns, moisture levels, and sun exposure. The processing/extraction technique chosen by the supplier also impacts the product whether it is a liquid or powder extract. If an extract is produced by an unreputable source, the appearance and performance of the product is compromised. Therefore, standardization is an important step for suppliers to warrant consistency between each batch.
Standardization refers to the process of identifying the biologically active compound in the plant, and the solvent is removed from the extract. Once the concentration of the active compound is regulated, it is diluted with the appropriate carrier oil. Proper standardization ensures that the potency and quality of the botanical extract remains consistent from batch to batch. The process also guarantees the composition of any active constituents and marker compounds. Since the active compound is of a significantly higher concentration than the original extract, standardized botanical extracts may emit higher therapeutic effects in comparison to whole herbs or non-standardized extracts.
USES OF POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACTS
Many of the Powder Botanical Extracts offered at NDA have been used historically for medicinal and cosmetic purposes. Plant extracts were the backbone of numerous traditional cultures and their therapeutic practices. Herbs such as Honeysuckle were used in Chinese medicine for its cleansing and purifying properties, while Horse Chestnut originated in Asia and was introduced to Europe in the 16th Century. Olive Leaf was used for thousands of years by Egyptian and Mediterranean to aid a plethora of health concerns. The use of anti-inflammatory botanicals such as White Willow dates to 6000 in Ancient civilizations. Today, these plant extracts are blended into skin and hair care formulations for their unique beautifying and healing properties. NDA's Powder Botanical Extracts are adaptable and can be used in soaps, body washes, lotions, creams, toners, shampoos, and conditioners.
As a guide, it is recommended including these extract in the amount of 0.5 – 2% by weight of the product. For shampoos, creams, and other thick products, the extract should be dissolved in hot water prior to adding; we recommend mixing the extract with 5-10 ml of hot water (approximately 45-50 degrees Celsius) until it dissolves. If adding to mists, toners, or water-based products, the extract can be added to the formula without dissolving it first.
Botanical Extracts such as Chrysanthemum, Cucumber Peel, and Rosehip possess astringent properties, making them effective ingredients to add to a facial toner. Add your powder of choice to a mixture of Floral Water, Essential Oil, and Solubilizer (Polysorbate 20) Raw Material for a rejuvenating and reinvigorating natural toner.
Chamomile and Thyme Botanical Extracts are believed to be healing, cleansing, and anti-inflammatory when applied topically. For a moisturizing body wash that is also relaxing to the senses, mix your choice of extract with a body wash cosmetic base. Thyme and Chamomile also make excellent ingredients to add to handcrafted soap bars.
Along with skincare products, Powder Botanical Extracts also possess beautifying properties that are beneficial for hair health. Burdock Root, Chamomile, and Sunflower have potential to strengthen hair, prevent further damage, and increase shine. For a restorative and moisturizing shampoo, mix your choice of Powder Botanical Extract with Shampoo Cosmetic base and an Essential Oil that aligns with your desired results.
A GUIDE TO POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACTS AND THEIR BENEFITS
Aspen Bark Powder Botanical Extract
Standardization: 4:1 from the dried bark
Botanical Name: Populus adenopoda
- Possess skin smoothing properties.
- Be a natural preservative that is a healthier alternative to parabens.
- Contain salicin, which is a skin conditioning agent.
- Be non-irritating, making this safe for sensitive skin.
Burdock Root Botanical Extract
Standardization: 4:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Arctium lappa
- Contain Vitamins B and E, as well as an abundance of minerals including potassium, phosphorus, and Zinc.
- Deep clean pores and purify the skin.
- reat extremely dry skin and conditions hair.
Chamomile Botanical Extract
Standardization: 10:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Matricarina recutita
- Soothe the surface of the skin.
- Brighten the skin and the hair.
- Possess cleansing and moisturizing properties.
- Treat mild acne and blemishes.
- Help ease the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
Chrysanthemum Botanical Extract
Standardization: 12:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Chrysanthemum morifolium
- Have natural astringent properties similar to witch hazel, making Chrysanthemum an effective natural toner.
- Possess anti-inflammatory properties.
- Act as an anti-irritant and is soothing on the skin surface.
Cucumber Peel Botanical Extract
Standardization: 10:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Cucumis sativus
- Possess a profile of powerful antioxidants.
- Be cooling and tightening when applied to the skin, making it an excellent addition to skin care products.
- Be refreshing and rejuvenating when applied to the skin surface as a toner.
Grape Seed Botanical Extract
Standardization: 95% Proanthocyanidins
Botanical Name: Vitis vinifera
- Be rich in flavonoids.
- Be non-irritating, making it ideal for sensitive skin.
- Improve the skin's texture by protecting its elasticity, maintaining suppleness and smoothness.
Green Tea Botanical Extract
Standardization: Minimum 10% Polyphenols
Botanical Name: Camellia sinensis
- Be rich in antioxidants such as Vitamins C and E.
- Reduce the signs of aging caused by environmental stressors.
- Possess active constituents such as Catechin – Polyphenols.
Honeysuckle Flower Botanical Extract
Standardization: 10% Chlorogenic acid
Botanical Name: Lonicera japonica
- Be antibacterial and anti-inflammatory.
- Treat areas troubled by acne, redness, and irritation.
- Help ease eczema, allergies, and sunburns.
Horse Chestnut Botanical Extract
Standardization: 20% Aescin
Botanical Name: Aesculus hippocastanum
- Reduce the appearance of varicose veins.
- Ease swelling and inflammation.
- Consist of many powerful antioxidants that help prevent damage caused by free radicals.
Milk Thistle Silymarin Botanical Extract
Standardization: 80% Silymarin
Botanical Name: Silybum marianum
- Be a powerful antioxidant that emits powerful effects due to the silymarin content.
- Protect against environmental stressors.
- Be an effective treatment against mild acne.
- Reduce the signs of aging skin.
- Protect against harmful UV rays.
Olive Leaf Botanical Extract
Standardization: 8:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Olea europaea
- Contain up to 100 phytochemicals and essential nutrients.
- Act as a conditioning agent for dry and stressed skin.
- Possess antioxidant properties.
Rosehip Botanical Extract
Standardization: 5% Ascorbic Acid
Botanical Name: Rosa canina
- Be rich in Vitamin C, as well as Vitamins A, B1 and 2, E, and K.
- Contain minerals such as beta carotene, bioflavonoids, calcium, citrates, citric acid, and phosphorus.
- Maintain skin's suppleness.
- Possess soothing properties that can relieve dryness, itchiness and irritation.
- Can also act as an astringent, making it an excellent toner.
Rosemary Botanical Extract
Standardization: 15% in Carnosic Acid
Botanical Name: Rosmarinus officinalis
- Be a highly effective antioxidant.
- Strengthen skin elasticity, slowing the signs of aging.
Sea Buckthorn Botanical Extract
Standardization: 20% Flavonoids
Botanical Name: Hippophae rhamnoides
- Be rich in vitamins and antioxidants.
- Be a natural emollient possessing skin healing nutrients.
- Improve skin's texture by treating dryness.
- Reduce the appearance of fine lines.
Sunflower Botanical Extract
Standardization: 5:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Helianthus Annuus
- Possess antioxidant properties that help protect the skin from environmental stressors.
- Be rich in polyphenols and Vitamin F.
- Provide a protective layer on the surface when applied to the hair, preventing further damage and splitting of the ends.
- Enhance hair's fullness and shine.
Thyme Botanical Extract
Standardization: 4:1 Extract
Botanical Name: Thymus Vulgaris
- Possess strong cleansing properties due to its constituents of tannins and organic acids.
- Be a natural astringent that can ease the appearance of inflammation.
- Reduce excessive oiliness and treat mild acne.
White Willow Bark Extract
Standardization: 15% Salicin
Botanical Name: Salix alba L.
- Be an effective exfoliant and astringent.
- Act as a purifying agent.
- Treat inflammatory skin issues such as redness.
- Refine pores and reduce oiliness.
- Help skin fight free radicals that cause it to age prematurely.
CONTRAINDICATIONS OF POWDER BOTANICAL EXTRACTS
As with all New Directions Aromatics products, Powder Botanical Extracts are for external use only. It is imperative to consult a medical practitioner before using any of our Powdered Botanical Extracts for therapeutic purposes. For people who are pregnant or nursing, do not use Powder Botanical Extracts without the medical advice of a physician, as they may negatively impact certain hormone secretions, and more research needs to be done as to whether these effects are transferable to babies during early stages of development. Keep the powders out of reach of children, especially those under the age of 7.
If you are living with cancer, a skin disorder, a bleeding disorder, a hormone-related aliment, or a condition of the heart, liver, or kidney, speak to a physician before using Powder Botanical Extracts.
As with other types of botanical extracts, a skin test is recommended prior to using our powders. Dilute 1 tsp. of the preferred Powder Botanical Extract in 1 tsp. distilled water and apply a dime-size amount to a small area of the skin.
Never apply Powder Botanical Extracts near the eye area, inner nose, ears, or any other sensitive areas. Potential side effects for Powder Botanical Extracts include skin irritation or discoloration, rash, hives, swelling or tenderness on the mouth, lips, or cheeks, headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, nerve damage, fever, chills, nasal congestion, wheezing, breathing difficulties, chest pain, throat irritation, increased thirst, nausea, heightened or lowered blood sugar levels, bloody nose, irregular heartbeat, vomiting, gas, indigestion, cramping, constipation, diarrhea, excess menstrual flow, and frequent urination.
All NDA products are meant to serve as complementary remedies and are not to be used as a replacement for any medicinal treatments or prescriptions for managing moods, behaviors, or disorders. In the event of an allergic reaction, discontinue use of these products and see a doctor, pharmacist, or allergist immediately for a health assessment and appropriate remedial action. To prevent side effects, consult with a medical professional prior to use.
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