The benefits of pure silk and non-woven silk
Are you wondering what the benefits of silk are? Pure silk has great regenerating and healing properties for the skin. It provides the two main silk proteins, sericin and fibroin. In this article you will find details on the benefits of pure silk for the skin.
What is the difference with textile silk? Textile silk contains only fibroin because during the silk production process, sericin is removed from the silk thread. However, textile silk also has very interesting properties: it is hypoallergenic (it is impossible to create allergies), antibacterial, anti-mites, and hydrophobic . This improves the hydration of the skin and hair, and avoids the phenomena of over-inflammation due to mites and bacteria which often proliferate in humid environments. But let's return to the question of the benefits of pure silk for the skin.
The effects of silk on the skin: healing and regeneration
Even if humans have integrated silk into their habits and customs for millennia, research on silk in the field of health and cosmetics is relatively recent. Perhaps you have heard of the benefits of silk for skin and hair? The benefits lie mainly in silk proteins. Silk proteins are currently used in medical applications for their healing and regenerative properties. This opens the way to the use of silk in a skin care approach in cosmetics. The main proteins in silk are called sericin and fibroin.
Sericin is used today as a healing agent [i] , particularly in dressings. The main reason for this choice is the excellent biocompatibility of sericin with keratinocytes and fibroblasts (constituents of hair fiber and skin, see definition at the bottom of the article) , and the secondary reasons are the mitogenic properties and prolonged moisture retention when wrapped by silk proteins, which is important in dressings.
A human clinical study [ii] examined the effect of pure silk dressings in the treatment of superficial burns covering more than 10% of the total body surface area. This strategy allowed rapid re-epithelization, a marked reduction in the frequency of dressing changes and gave rise to great satisfaction with regard to the appearance of the scars and aesthetic issues. In other words, by applying pure silk dressings to burned skin areas, cell regeneration is accelerated and improved .
Patient experience is better because dressing changes are often painful: by reducing the need for dressing renewals, patient comfort is improved. The aesthetic result is also greatly improved by better healing . Another advantage to take into account in a global approach to health systems: pure silk dressings can be “ cost-efficient ”, that is to say relatively inexpensive in relation to the medical service provided.
Silk fibroin also shows promise in helping to compensate and maintain overall skin health by increasing cell spreading, migration, and adhesion, as well as the expression of their related proteins, which are crucial for wound healing. wounds [iii] .
Another scientific study [iv] on wound healing, this time on laboratory skin samples, demonstrated a 150% increase in fibroblast multiplication for samples in contact with fibroin compared to samples fibroin-free skin. This is particularly interesting for skin care because fibroblasts are the cells that enable the production of collagen and elastin necessary to maintain healthy, youthful skin. Silk fibroin helps activate fibroblasts, these essential skin cells, and therefore boost the natural production of collagen and elastin, necessary for healthy and firm skin.
Pure silk non-woven has exactly the same composition as the silk cocoon
The Benu Blanc-Sericyne silk non-woven fabric is made of pure silk fiber: under specific hygrometry conditions, the bombyx mori “weaves” its cocoon on a flat surface. This technique, unique in the world, is a Sericyne know-how . The bombyx mori can then transform into a butterfly, its natural cycle is respected. During this transformation, the bombyx mori produced a non-woven silk, a flat material made of the silk thread that makes up the silk cocoon.
The silk cocoon is made up of two main proteins: fibroin and sericin, of which fibroin, the fibrous protein, is the central part, and sericin, the globular protein, is the sticky part which envelops the fibers and holds them together. . In addition to fibroin and sericin, we find carbohydrates, salts and waxes, known as "non-sericin" constituents, which help give the silk cocoon a water-repellent character [V ] . Silk cocoons, and therefore pure silk eye patches.
Pure silk patches for eye contour care
Pure silk patches made from non-woven silk are a new cosmetic approach: more natural, more eco-responsible, more durable. This new beauty gesture can be used according to two different routines:
- one is minimalist and provides deep care to the skin; the patches are used moistened with water and applied to the skin for 10 minutes. The skin is hydrated and smoothed, bags are immediately less visible
- the other routine combines all the facets of silk proteins for a short-term boost of radiance , immediately visible on the smoothing of the eye contour, and for a long-term anti-aging approach with a significant reduction in signs of aging demonstrated in corneometry measurements in effectiveness tests. This involves moistening the pure silk patches with the silky eye contour serum, the 100% natural serum developed by Benu Blanc. The effects have been demonstrated on smoothing, the anti-puffiness effect, and the anti-aging effect. With regular use, crow's feet wrinkles decrease by 24% in 28 days of use. These are the silk proteins which act on cell regeneration, hydration, and the overall health of the eye contour, which is a particularly sensitive area.
Why is the origin of silk non-woven and silk important?
Traceability is crucial: this involves using silk directly in contact with your skin. This is why Benu Blanc and Sericyne are working hand in hand to create a French silk industry in an ultra-preserved environment, the Cévennes regional natural park. With Sericyne silk, the origin of the silk is guaranteed and virtuous: these are approved farmers who cultivate silkworms in a protected, GMO-free environment.
After use, what to do with pure silk?
Pure silk is a completely natural product. It is recyclable, and even more simply, compostable .
In the case of the pure silk patches that we offer, you can reuse them up to 3 times : simply rinse them well and let them air dry. Then you can put them in your composter.
Silk vocabulary: need some definitions?
What is a non-woven?
This term non-woven describes materials whose fabric appearance does not come from weaving but either from a natural characteristic or from compression of the fibers with a binder. In the case of Benu Blanc silk patches, it is an entirely natural non-woven material, without any addition or use of material other than the natural and raw silk thread intended to create the silk cocoon.
Pure silk and pure silk: are they the same thing?
Normally, pure silk only refers to silk in its natural state, coming from the cocoon of the bombyx. But you will sometimes find a term "pure silk" for silk textiles: this is used as a synonym for 100% silk, especially for pillowcases. This is an easy way to emphasize the fact that the designated fabric is entirely made of silk.
Aside from the Sericyne non-woven silk pillowcase, which is now available on the Benu Blanc website, all other pillowcases on the market are made of silk, natural silk, 100% silk, mulberry silk , etc. The non-woven silk pillowcase is a two-sided pillowcase: one side in pure non-woven silk, another side in textile silk. The idea is to use the pure silk side of the pillowcase for a basic treatment: 1 night per week for the prevention of signs of aging; or 2 to 3 times a week for acne-prone skin. In fact, in the latter case, it is the problems of over-inflammation that will be addressed by silk; as well as the healing which is necessary to avoid leaving too many brown or dark spots on the skin following acne spots.
And the term mulberry silk? what does it designate?
Once again it is a matter of ease of language. The tree, the mulberry, does not produce silk. It produces leaves which are eaten by silkworms. The silkworms will then produce a cocoon (or a non-woven piece of pure silk ;-)) whose thread will be transformed into fabric. So mulberry silk is shorthand for saying that it is silk made by silkworms that eat mulberry leaves.
One last definition: what is a fibroblast?
A fibroblast is a connective tissue cell. Fibroblasts are present in the dermis where they produce extracellular matrix components such as collagen fibers and elastin. Fibroblasts are therefore very important for maintaining healthy and well-hydrated skin.
Conclusion: pure silk has exceptional potential for cosmetics
Here are some advantages of using pure silk: an entirely natural material that brings you the best of silk proteins. The two main proteins in natural silk are sericin and fibroin. They are particularly recognized for their healing and regenerating properties.
Scientific research into the potential of silk is currently attracting researchers from around the world. Benu Blanc creates in France with Sericyne the French silk industry for cosmetics, in an ever more natural and responsible approach.
[i] G. Tao, et al., Bioinspired design of AgNPs embedded silk sericin-based sponges for efficiently combating bacteria and promoting wound healing, Mater. Of the. 180
[ii] JL Schiefer, et al., Feasibility of pure silk for the treatment of large superficial burn wounds covering over 10% of the total body surface, J. Burn Care Res. 41 (1)
[iii] M. Vidya, S. Rajagopal, Silk fibroin: a promising tool for wound healing and skin regeneration, Int. J.Poly. Science. 2021 (2021), 9069924
[iv] Tshubouchi et al. Bombyx mori fibroin enhanced the proliferation of cultured human skin fibroblasts, journal of insect biotechnology and sericology, 72, 65-69, 2003
[V] P. Aramwit, T. Siritientong, T. Srichana, Potential applications of silk sericin, a natural protein from textile industry by-products, Waste Manag. Res., 30 (3) (2012), pp. 217-224