SPA+CLINIC — Kakadu Plum: Our Skin-Superfood Hero
Cutting edge skincare brands are using vitamin C-packed Australian superfood Kakadu plum in their formulas – an inspired move, given that roughly 60 percent of what we apply to our skin, hair, and nails is absorbed into the body’s ecosystem. That’s what equates to an extension of diet. Beauty brands are increasingly accommodating their customers’ dietary requirements and niche consumer groups are relishing the spread of, for instance, gluten-free, Halal, Kosher, and vegan-friendly cosmetic products now available to them.
Ingredients considered healthy to eat are being slipped into skincare, in the belief that our pores will literally lap up the nutrients. Not surprisingly, “superfoods” such as kale and goji berries are popular inclusions, known to deliver outstanding wellness benefits when orally consumed. The term “superfood” was coined in the 1990s and usually refers to plant-based foods or herbs that pack large doses of antioxidants, vitamins or minerals, and are believed to have therapeutic properties. For example, turmeric is renowned as an effective anti-inflammatory.
Even more recently, Australian native superfoods such as Desert Lime and Kangaroo Apple have gained global recognition for their potent healing capabilities.
And Kakadu plum (also known as Gubinge, Billygoat Plum, or Murunga) is arguably the best-known homegrown hero of all. It is believed to be one of the richest natural sources of vitamin C in the world.
We speak with innovators who harness Kakadu plum in brightening, anti-ageing, hydrating, and acne skin care products.
Synthesis Organics is an award-winning skincare brand, formulated by Byron Bay (NSW) naturopath Theme Rains. She includes cellularly extracted vitamin C from Kakadu plum in a number of products across the collection.
Theme explains the science behind this extraction method and why method matters in terms of efficacy:
“Vitamin C is a highly unstable molecule in the presence of oxygen but this instability is what makes it so effective in preventing cell and tissue damage. While it is stable in dried form, it is also inactive and loses potency within hours when exposed to water.
“Stabilising activity is vital for it to deliver all its beauty benefits, but this has been a major cosmetic chemistry challenge.
“Cellular extraction was the breakthrough we needed. Through biomimicry, it harnesses the pure raw vitamin C by transferring it through the cell wall of the Kakadu plum into a liquid medium, mimicking its cellular environment.
“This produces a water-soluble, active source of the unstable vitamin C in a stable solution that delivers incredible antioxidant benefits to the skin.”