Since 1985, Natural Products Expo East has served as a platform for groundbreaking developments across the food, beverage, personal care, and supplement industries, with a specific focus on naturally derived, health-driven products. This September, over 29,000 attendees gathered at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia to explore countless creations unveiled by more than 1,550 exhibitors. Among the crowd were members of Twincraft’s Sales and Marketing Teams, eager to scout out the trends and innovations likely to make a crossover into the skincare space. The convergence of food and beauty isn’t exactly a new concept, as evident by the amassed popularity of multitasking ingredients like vitamin c and collagen, along with a seemingly endless array of oils and extracts, all teeming with benefits - both inside and out. As the beauty industry becomes increasingly aligned with the health and wellness categories, we will continue to see pantries and “shelfies” alike stocked with these intersecting superfoods.
“Functional” Isn’t a Fad
When hunger strikes we might reach for a bite or sip on a drink to satisfy a craving, potentially weighing the nutritional value or indulging simply because it tastes good. Food can be easily categorized as a vehicle for flavor and nourishment, while a multivitamin is great for picking up the slack when diet alone isn’t cutting it. These days, the wellness boom has given birth to a modern class of ingestibles that bridges the gap between snack and supplement. “Functional” is a term widely used to describe a holistic approach to health. Scanning the show floor, you could find a variety of food and drinks designed through this functional lens, some promoting relaxation and better sleep with the help of magnesium, others promising increased energy and endurance from Cordyceps, an adaptogenic mushroom. Among the advertised functions was the notion of a beauty-from-within approach, whereby the consumption of specific ingredients could benefit the look and feel of skin.
Another overarching theme at this year’s expo was the prevalence of upcycled ingredient stories, which has been an apparent trend in skincare as well. Sustainable packaging efforts have been well underway, with more and more brands making it a top priority, but it’s been really exciting to see how much further companies are able to push the boundaries of creativity. One interesting product to note was the reimagining of spent grain to produce a totally new type of plant-based milk made from barley. In the skincare industry, by-product beauty is becoming more mainstream too, as formulators discover unique ways to utilize ingredients at every phase of their life cycle.
The Power of Plants
Carbon footprint, animal rights, and food allergies are a few considerations one might have in mind when making the switch to a plant-based diet. Although a beet may never truly replace a burger, there’s no doubt that plants have the incredible shapeshifting ability to offer a spectrum of health benefits without the sacrifice. Alternatives such as pumpkin seed protein powder, yogurt made from almonds, olive oil-based ice cream, mushroom jerky, and lentil pasta are just some of the options spanning today’s grocery aisles. Venturing into the personal care section of your local market, you’re sure to find a plethora of vegan, cruelty-free, and plant-powered beauty products lining the shelves. Just as the food industry has evolved leaps and bounds, skincare has made impressive strides to harness the vast potential of plants in product formulation.
Twincraft’s approach to product development draws inspiration from the trends and advancements taking place in industries outside of skincare, which we use to inform our unique innovation process. If you’re interested in learning more about our product concepts, please connect with our Sales Team!