Milk has been used for several hundred years as a beauty remedy.
Historically, milk baths in the wealthier part of the society has been popular. Today, whey derived from milk is proven to offer functional beauty properties.
Collagen represents about 70% of skin in terms of dry weight and helps form the structural network of skin. The presence of collagen provides strength and resiliency in skin. Collins et al. investigated the topical application of whey upon effect on collagen synthesis and found that whey produced a significant increase (1).
Whey minerals prepared as a byproduct from whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate production showed similar water-absorbing ability and absorbing ability as hyaluronic acid, which is an effective humactant used in the cosmetics industry (2). Food products containing amino acids are known to have a beneficial effect upon skin tissues. However, cosmetic products containing amino acids develop unpleasant odour, which is difficult to mask. This odour causes the cosmetic product containing amino acids to be unusable. Hidalgo et al has discovered that a hydrolysate of alfalactalbumin is suitable for topical application to the skin. The hydrolysate is made by an endopeptidase and the hydrolysate consits of essentially peptides with a molecular weight of 200 to 500. They evaluated the performance of the hydrolysate to an amino acid (trypsin) and found similar protective effect and the same healing properties.(3)
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1. Topical compositions containing whey proteins. Collins D F, Mammone T, Ma-reus K D. Patent number: 6,203,805. 2001.
2. VI.3 – Cosmetic properties of whey minerals and their application to skin care products for babies. Negishi H, Otomo H, Gotou T, Ueda T, Kuwata T. Pro-ceedings of the second International whey Conference, held in Chicago, USA, 27-29. Oct. 1997.
3. Composition for topical administration. Hidalgo J, Jost R. Patent number: 4,463,017. 1984