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DSM in Personal Care

Suddenly “blue sky thinking” has a whole new meaning!

DSM extends the horizons of sun protection – into the blue

Without the sun there would be no life. Sunlight is essential for health and wellbeing – just think seasonal affective disorder, or vitamin D. However, as most of us know, too much sunlight in the invisible ultraviolet (UV) range can have a devastating effect on health, and especially on skin.

Organizations like the World Health Organization have been campaigning for years to promote awareness of the need for sun protection, and we in the personal care industry have been playing our part by enhancing sun protection products and integrating sun care into skin care formulations.

Until now, the world has focused on UV light as the source of harm. However, we at DSM strongly believe there is a justification for taking protection further, extending it to cover blue light from the visible range of the spectrum.

High-energy blue light is the natural part of sunlight that is adjacent to UV light on the spectrum, falling within the wavelength range of approximately 400 to 500 nm. It can be seen by the human eye and is responsible for the blue of the sky. Consumers are exposed to blue light every day, and nearly everywhere – whether from the sun or, increasingly, as artificial light from electronic devices.

Early evidence indicates a need for blue light protection

So scientists at DSM decided to investigate blue light activity in the skin. We were able to confirm that blue light induces oxidative stress at the skin surface through the formation of ROS. In particular DSM scientists were able to prove that this triggers a process known as protein carbonylation, which may cause proteins to lose their functionality.

Building on our expertise in both Sun and Skin Care, we were able to follow up on this initial research and develop solutions that put our customers in the driving seat.