in-cosmetics Asia: the driving force of innovation in the Asia Pacific beauty industry

After a year eagerly awaiting the return of the region’s leading cosmetics and personal care event, the APAC beauty industry once again descended on in-cosmetics Asia earlier this month. All eyes were on the future, with R&D teams seeking out new and previously unseen ingredients that will enable them to formulate incredible new products that capitaise on future trends.

Over three days, the region’s leading personal care ingredients event provided a platform for more than 11,307 cosmetics professionals – from 73 countries – to get hands-on with the world’s most innovative materials and technologies, while learning about new scientific breakthroughs, global trends and regulations.

Highlighting the diverse, high-level visitors that attended this year’s event, Ichimaru Pharcos Co,. Ltd. revealed that it had talked with company presidents, R&D scientists, formulators and sales managers over the three days, while Fabrice Guillemard, Regional Marketing Lead DSM Personal Care and Aroma Ingredients APAC at DSM, commented: “We met customers from across the region, Chinese, Indian, Korean, Thai, Indonesian and Malaysian. But at this year’s show we even spoke with people from Europe, including the UK, Turkey and France. It made the show a real success that we certainly want to repeat next year.”

The 480 suppliers presenting their latest ingredients alongside an educational programme featuring 54 global experts were the main attractions, with international R&D professionals hailing the show a huge success. Mineo Yamashita, a researcher for Japan-based business KOSE, was one of many that was enthused by the sourcing opportunities available at in-cosmetics Asia. He said: “I found so many ingredients at the event and had meetings with international suppliers from Germany, Holland and Japan. Among the most interesting was a polymer for a shampoo that I will try in my next formulation.”

Furthermore, the event’s co-location with Cosmex – ASEAN’s only event that focuses on manufacturing technologies, packaging and ODM/OEM services for the beauty industry – meant that there was no better location for those responsible for the development of new cosmetic and personal care products to source solutions across the supply chain.


Tours of discovery

Brand new to the in-cosmetics Asia programme this year were the hugely popular 90-minute ‘silent’ R&D Tours, curated and led by expert cosmetic chemist Rouah Al-Wakeel.

Over three days, more than 100 formulators – from the likes of Unilever, Coty, L’Oréal, AmorePacific and P&G – joined sessions that helped them learn more about Biotechnology Actives, Leadership in Microbiomics and Natural Ingredients.  Participants’ feedback was excellent, with several remarking on how powerful the

information was and how it gave them the opportunity to try products and ask questions to suppliers in a time efficient way.


Sharing industry knowledge

Year on year, the highly acclaimed Marketing Trends & Regulations Theatre continues to be the place cosmetic manufacturers turn to for information about future trends. This year, visitors packed the auditorium to discover exclusive insights on topics such as natural and organic products, C-beauty, premiumisation and anti-ageing.

Whether in Europe, Thailand, the US or China, the industry needs to navigate a vast array of regulations to comply with the law. As a result, one of the most eagerly anticipated sessions was delivered by Dr. Alain Khaiat and Indian government member Dr. V Varma who discussed the new ISO 16128 standard and how cosmetic manufacturers can ensure compliance with the Nagoya Protocol.

Meanwhile, the free-to-attend Technical Seminars enabled scientists to familiarise themselves with key personal care ingredients as international suppliers shared insights into their latest products. Representatives from Ashland, Brenntag, Clariant, DSM, Evonik, Dr. Straetmans GmbH and Givaudan Active Beauty were among those who delivered sessions designed to help R&D teams overcome specific challenges.

One of the busiest sessions was run by David Hunkeler, Director of AQUA+TECH Specialities, who highlighted how R&D teams can use molecular innovation to create novel natural cosmetic products. And chemists filled the theatre to hear John Lofthouse of CLR Berlin reveal a new approach to skin moisturisation that involves stimulating the efficiency of vitamin D receptors in skin cells.


Next level innovation

The APAC beauty industry prides itself on being one step ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to developing novel beauty products meaning that the Innovation Zone is always one of the most popular areas of in-cosmetics Asia.

This year, 66 products were on display, all of which had been launched within eight months of the event opening. Two of the ingredients in the area that attracted the most attention were Evonik Speciality Chemicals’ RHEANCE® Glycolipids – a new class of all-natural, multi-functional ingredient, suitable for gentle personal cleansing formulations that took a decade to develop – and Silab’s ECOBIOTYS®, an active ingredient bio-inspired by the regulating capacity of the microbiota of floral nectar, the Nectarobiota.

And it was no surprise that they scooped the top prizes in the in-cosmetics Asia Innovation Zone Best Ingredient Awards, in the functional and active categories respectively. The judges highlighted that RHEANCE® Glycolipids was a great multi-functional ingredient which was completely on-trend, while they complimented

ECOBIOTYS® on its unique story and ability to rebalance the microbiota of mature skin.

Another hugely popular feature of the Innovation Zone were the Mintel Live Demonstrations that were run throughout the event. This year the trend forecaster focused on Developing Beauty in a World of Emotions, presenting a host of finished products that deliver unique sensations to consumers.


Hair, skin and senses

Glowing skin, glossy hair and products that offer unique sensory experiences are already a signature of the APAC region, and, in testament to this, cosmetic chemists packed out this year’s Spotlight On areas that focused on Hair Actives, Sensory Enhancers and Hydration.

With the Asia-Pacific region set to become the largest haircare market by 2022, cosmetic chemists were presented with a range of new haircare actives including 100% natural treatments from DSM Nutritional Products, a new frizz control ingredient from Gattefossé Asia Pacific and a treatment for split ends from Solvay Speciality Chemicals Asia Pacific that boasts a 90% repair rate after just one application. Additionally, Sumit Chopra, Director of Research Analysis with GlobalData, talked attendees through the emergence of individualism and the demand for efficiency in the category, while Xin Qu, from Ashland LLC, hosted an invaluable technical seminar on ‘Protecting hair and scalp from the stress of urban living’.

Sanjeev Bhatt, a Director at Radico in India, commented: “The Spotlight On Haircare was the most useful aspect of the show for me. I could identify unique products and then visit the exhibitors at their stands to learn more. I strongly recommend this show for manufacturers who are looking for new ingredients to upgrade their products.”

Growing consumer demand for products that feel and smell fantastic on the skin meant that the Spotlight on Sensory Enhancers area was a huge hit with show visitors. It offered a closer look at innovative ingredients that are able to improve and enhance the touch, feel and smell of formulations, with the newest powder-to-cream foundations featured, alongside ‘jelly’ and ‘dry’ mask treatments. An exclusive presentation also highlighted leading technologies influencing the latest generation of sensory enhancers.

Glowing and flawless skin is a prerequisite for Asian consumers and this paved the way for a third Spotlight On area that focused on Hydration. It brought together leading suppliers of ingredients that enhance finished products to achieve luminous skin. Area sponsor Mibelle Biochemistry showcased its award winning MossCellTec™ – a biotechnology-produced moss that improves skin hydration – while BIOCOSMETHIC SAS unveiled Aquapuntia®, an ingredient derived from prickly pear. Visitors also benefited from an exclusive presentation by Mintel that explored different hydration-related claims and how they are influencing all beauty and personal care categories.

One outstanding ingredient from each Spotlight On area was presented with a coveted award during in-cosmetics Asia’s highly anticipated awards evening, which featured live entertainment and attracted a huge audience. Mr Kilala Tilaar, Creative and Innovation Director from the Martha Tilaar Group in Indonesia, was one of four judges that reviewed the technical data and tested each formulation on display. He remarked that the judging process had been extremely difficult because the “entries were hugely impressive and all provided manufacturers with innovative ways to develop new products.”

For haircare actives, the top prize went to Givaudan, while Ichimaru Pharcos scooped the award for hydration and INA Trading Co Ltd came top in the sensory enhancers category.


Winning formulations

Elsewhere at the show, across three days, the Formulation Lab brought together 596 R&D professionals who were keen to learn how new ingredients can inspire new formulations.

In total, 11 lab sessions ran over the course of the show, each delivering an invaluable and exclusive opportunity for cosmetic chemists to get hands-on with ingredients and learn new techniques that will help them develop innovative new products.

With the lab at capacity, Valerio Vergani from Grant Industries educated chemists on how to create ‘non-whitening, high SPF, high sensory formulations with Halal compliance’. Another well-attended session was run by Dr Carsten Dietz, R&D/Quality Director of Cosphatec GmbH, who demonstrated how to create a soft, anti-pollution, highly caring and stable anti-ageing skin elixir – enabling R&D professionals to create products that will tap into some of the biggest trends of the moment.

Demonstrating the value of the sessions, Neelam Khurana, Director, Timpac Healthcare PVT Ltd., said: “What was fantastic about in-cosmetics Asia was the Formulation Labs, I found them very interesting and learnt about new technologies and how to mix new bioactives to make new formulations.”

Sarah Gibson, Exhibition Director of in-cosmetics Asia, commented:

“Innovation is always strong at any in-cosmetics event, but visitors and exhibitors have told us that they were impressed with the sheer number of new products on display at this year’s Asia event. Thanks to the interactive and educational elements of this year’s show, manufacturers will be able to create some incredible new products that will advance the current cosmetic retail space, offering new and innovative end products that meet cutting-edge trends.”

in-cosmetics Asia 2019 will take place from 5-7 November 2019. Visit for more information.


OTC Beauty Magazine offers useful business tips and effective selling tools to boost revenue and customer traffic for OTC retailers. The magazine also provides invaluable product knowledge, industry news and insights for retail store owners, manufacturers, distributors and professionals in the barber and beauty supply industry. Contact us:

Read the latest issue of
OTC Beauty Magazine

May 2024


Stay in the Know!

From the newest products to the latest in acquisitions and mergers, if you want to be in know of what’s going on in the multicultural beauty industry, you’ve come to the right place!

Just sign up below and you’ll receive updates right to your inbox!

You have Successfully Subscribed!