The secret for longwear, no-transfer or waterproof makeup mainly lies in a synthetic molecule which used to be exclusively petrochemical: isododecane. Thanks to the research done by French biotechnology company Global Bioenergies, this flagship cosmetic ingredient is now available in a biosourced version obtained by fermenting plant resources.
In 2008, the startup started working on an alternative to petrochemical isododecane derived from biomass to create a more environmentally friendly supply chain. “Our concept was mainly aimed to have bacteria produce molecules they don’t naturally produce. That used to be considered impossible,” explains Marc Delcourt, co-founder and CEO of Global Bioenergies.
Twelve years later, this process with countless applications (fuel, plastic, food…) is marketed for the first time in the cosmetics industry, a key sector for this ingredient essential to long-lasting makeup.
“Isododecane in longwear makeup is the core of the issue. This market represents no less than 4% of the cosmetics market in value. We are the only ones to produce a biosourced isododecane, so only we have the key for naturalness on this growth-driving market with a high demand. It is a unique opportunity,” says the CEO.
A high demand for naturalness
Thanks to its hold throughout the day and night, during outdoor activities, and in damp environments, long-lasting, waterproof or no-transfer makeup does have a public expecting high performance, colours… and naturalness. This ingredient can also be used as an emollient in various dermocosmetic or hair care formulas as a substitute for silicones, which are about to be banned due to environmental issues.
“We started by launching the LAST brand in June, with small production volumes. Then, starting from 2022, we will make this ingredient available to makeup players willing to replicate what we have just done. People are already knocking on our door. Within the next three or four years, we will considerably increase production volumes to target broader markets, like dermocosmetics and hair care,” announces Marc Delcourt.
The brand introduces itself as the first to offer longwear makeup with highly natural formulas that do not compromise on vibrant colours. They have developed twelve intense, matte or iridescent colours for liquid eye shadows that last 24 hours. The formulas contain 90% to 99.8% of ingredients of natural origin. The same goes for the three waterproof, black, blue or brown mascara references with 90% of ingredients of natural origin, and the three brow mascara shades with 95% of ingredients of natural origin. The products are free from controversial ingredients and perfume.
The eye shadow bottles are made of glass, the caps are based on metal. The mascara bottles and caps are based on recycled plastic, while the brush is biosourced and derived from castor oil.
Available on the colors-that-last.com e-shop since June, the brand should soon enter selective distribution networks in France with a price range from EUR 18 to EUR 25. A lipstick line based on the same concept will complete the offering as soon as September.
By launching LAST, Global Bioenergies has made a huge step forward, bringing naturalness to a cosmetic segment where it was almost nowhere to be found. This disruptive approach made the public-listed company  change its industrial organization by transferring all equipment from the initial site in Germany to that of Pomacle, in Eastern France.