Derived from the fermentation of natural sugars, thealpha-glucan oligosaccharide is a prebiotic. In other words, it serves as a food source for beneficial bacteria, at the expense of undesirable microorganisms. It rebalances the bacterial landscape and thus strengthens the skin's microbiological barrier, which keeps it in good condition and reduces the appearance of blemishes. This article provides all the information you need to know about this plant-based active ingredient.
What is "Alpha-Glucan Oligosaccharide" and what is its purpose?
An overview of alpha-glucan oligosaccharide.
From a chemical perspective, thealpha-glucan oligosaccharide is a complex sugar or oligomer composed solely of glucose itself having a degree of polymerisation of 2 - 10 units. Alpha and beta-glucans differ in the type of bond that links the molecules together.
Like most sugars, alpha-glucan oligosaccharide is primarily extracted from plants, particularly from chicory roots. However, it can also be obtained through chemical synthesis. In both the food industry and the field of skin and hair care, this complex sugar is used as a prebiotic : it nourishes the good bacteria and inhibits the growth of the bad ones.
What exactly is the microbiome?
The term microbiota thus refers to thecollection of non-pathogenic microorganisms (bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites), known as commensals (bacteria that are beneficial to the body), housed in a specific environment, the microbiome. The human microbiota harbours millions of microorganisms. Within the body, there are different microbiotas: in the skin, mouth, vagina, male sexual organs, lungs, and so on.
Thanks to their antimicrobial properties, these "good" bacteria enable the body to protect and defend itself against invasive pathogens. Conversely, the "bad" bacteria invade the body and can damage cells and/or induce inflammation. However, they are also essential to our body, as they stimulate our immune defences. A healthy microbiota results from a balance between these "good" and "bad" bacteria. For instance, excessive use of antibacterial soaps can disrupt the skin microbiota, which can lead to redness and/or irritation; this is referred to as dysbiosis.
Note : The skin microbiome varies from one person to another. It depends on factors such as age, lifestyle, gender, skin pH, and so on...
The alpha-glucan oligosaccharide: its benefits in cosmetics.
As previously mentioned, the alpha-glucan oligosaccharide is a sugar prebiotic, which is a food source for the "good" bacteria, at the expense of undesirable microorganisms. When applied to the skin, it rebalances the microbiota and prevents dysbiosis. The microbiological barrier is strengthened, preventing the colonisation of pathogenic microorganisms and thus the appearance of imperfections. The skin becomes healthier and more uniform.
Furthermore, thealpha-glucan oligosaccharide is recognised for its moisturising properties. This sugar with its film-forming properties captures moisture and retains it within the skin cells. As a result, the skin becomes more supple and soft, preventing any feelings of tightness.
In which skincare products can one find alpha-glucan oligosaccharide?
Thealpha-glucan oligosaccharide is used as a cleansing agent with rebalancing properties in certain products such as facial gels, cleansing oils, or even intimate hygiene products. It can also be found in some oil-based serums or in certain rich creams intended for the face, but also for the body.
Typology has developed the unifying and rebalancing complex with 3 pre+probiotics. It is designed to rebalance the skin's ecosystem to prevent the appearance of blemishes and reduce redness. The skin is healthy and the complexion is even.It is suitable for all skin types, but is particularly recommended for combination to oily skin, prone to skin irregularities (redness, blemishes).
CAMELI N. & al. Effects of topical gluco-oligosaccharide and collagen tripeptide F in the treatment of sensitive atopic skin. International Journal of Cosmetic Science (2009).
GILLIET M. & al. Le microbiote cutané : le poids lourd sort de l’ombre. Dermatologie (2016).