The effect of an amphiphilic self-assembled lipid lamellar phase on the relief of dry skin

G. Pennick, Bhaven Chavan*, B. Summers, A. V. Rawlings

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Synopsis Humectant and occlusive technologies have traditionally been used for the treatment of dry skin. Originally, non-lamellar-forming ingredients were used such as petrolatum but recent research has shown the advantage of using lamellar-forming ingredients such as ceramides, pseudoceramides and phospholipids in the relief of dry skin. Nevertheless, the importance of using lipid-phase transition inducers, such as long-chain fatty acids, has not been studied clinically. The evaluation of a novel complex of lipophilic ingredients was of interest: cetyl alcohol, isostearyl isostearate, potassium cetyl phosphate, cetyl behenate and behenic acid. The combination of all these ingredients was shown to be more effective than any single component in water vapour transmission rate studies. This was thought to be owing to the formation of a unique structural organization of the lipids upon dry-down from an O/W emulsion as was examined by X-ray diffraction and optical microscopy. When evaluated clinically in a randomized double-blind and vehicle-controlled moisturization efficacy trial, this novel blend of ingredients was shown to not only improve the visible signs of skin dryness to a significantly greater extent than a comparable mineral oil-containing vehicle but also then maintain a better skin condition during the regression no-treatment phase of the study. This combination of ingredients offers a new technology option for the treatment of dry skin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)567-574
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Cosmetic Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012


  • dry skin
  • lamellar formation
  • lipid-phase transition
  • moisture efficacy test


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