International beauty giant L’Oréal has developed a waterless sunscreen using liquid carnauba wax, Cosmetics Design-Europe reported on 13 August.

The waterless formulation comprised an oil-in-water carnauba wax, a silica aerogel and a UV filter system to overcome ‘current drawbacks’ associated with anhydrous sunscreens, the company was reported to have written in its international patent.

Designed to be used to make sunscreen products in a variety of forms, including lotions, milks, creams and foams, L’Oréal said it was particularly suitable for a stick variant.

Current waterless sunscreen formulations, in any form, were susceptible to oxidation when exposed to high temperatures due to the high fatty compound content, according to L’Oréal. This resulted in sensory changes to the product, including smell and colour, it said.

Initially, L’Oréal had tested a carnauba wax in solid form, but it had moved on to a liquid emulsion as the solid ingredient had affected the colour of the final formulation, Cosmetics Design-Europe reported.

Incubation tests had shown the formula had ‘superior stability’ when exposed to temperatures as high as 45°C, the company said.

L’Oréal said the liquid wax could be incorporated at a range of 1%/8% by weight of the final composition and mixed in at temperatures between 80°/90°C. Other fatty compounds, including waxes and oils, could also be added.