We’re here to provide clean beauty that’s better for you and the planet. Our sustainable star ingredient, squalane, is nature’s best moisturizer—it’s a powerfully effective head-to-toe hydrator—but its sister, squalene, has a complex sourcing story.
Squalene is a hydrator the body naturally produces to maintain and protect the moisture barrier. As we age, the body produces less squalene, which shows itself in the form of dry and dull skin. It’s important to replenish the skin with moisture that it naturally recognizes, which is why squalene is such a popular ingredient in the beauty industry. Squalene can be sourced from olives, but unpredictable weather and growing conditions often make this method unstable.
Another squalene sourcing method is from sharks. Harvesting shark livers for squalene has been around since the 1950s. The deep sea shark liver is particularly rich in squalene—it can comprise up to 80 percent of the organ. Deep sea sharks are often the target of liver harvesting as they yield high amounts of squalene, although this sourcing method is incredibly cruel and unethical. It’s estimated that harvesting three shark livers produce just two pounds of squalene. Millions of sharks have been killed for their livers and this practice has also contributed to many shark species becoming endangered. The environmental impact is staggering and devastating.
Our scientists were determined to create a clean, sustainable and ethical squalene alternative. They discovered a way to bioengineer this mega-moisturizer as safely and effectively as the body does—we call it squalane. It’s made from Brazilian sugarcane, a renewable resource that requires little to no irrigation thanks to the abundant rainfall in the area. Our sustainable solution saves millions of sharks every year and has a low carbon footprint. We estimate that over ten years, one hectare of a sugarcane field can produce as much squalane as 23,000 sharks. We make every effort to minimize our environmental impact and are proud that our star ingredient, squalane, is powerfully effective and 100% plant-based.
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To celebrate International Women’s Day, we’re honoring women who are at the forefront of the clean beauty space. Each of these leaders is deeply dedicated to advancing the clean beauty agenda and making clean the new standard. We chatted with five women in a range of roles—from our very own Biossance President to the woman who leads all things skincare at Sephora—to learn about their inspiration, what they love about clean beauty and their favorite Biossance product.
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