FRESH PLANTSExtracts from fresh plants are not the same as extracts from dry plants.
In cosmetics, the majority of extracts are used in their dried forms and the use of extracts from fresh plants is very rare, if not unique. However, during the drying process a considerable amount of functional substances may be lost and consequently in the final extract some relevant constituents may be missing.
The use of fresh plants allows to exploit the maximum vitality of the plant, to capture the pure essence, to utilize the full natural power. The fist distinctive feature when using extracts fresh plants is their unique fragrance, one feels the full spectrum of flavors and aromas. Just as nature intended.
Anyhow, it is not all about scents.
Technically the use of fresh plants is crucial to preserve the so-called “Phytocomplex”, which represents the full spectrum of actives from a plant. In fact, by making extractions directly from fresh plant, thermolabile, volatile, degradable actives are preserved and the result is the highest concentration of functionally effective substances.
The presence of the intact Phytocomplex enhances the biological activity and allows to maximise the entire strength of natural extracts. The benefits of using fresh extracts versus dry extracts have been highlighted in a variety of studies, both in-vitro and ethnobotanical where it was observed that fresh extracts have stronger activity on the tested parameters than the dry ones.
In the graphs below it is possible to observe an example of the difference in content of actives in extracts from fresh Valerianae Officinalis radix (first two graphs from the left) and Symphyti Officinalis radix (graph on the right) versus their respective dry extracts, according to the tested methodology. Depending on the type of plant and the analysed substance the difference can be remarkable.
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