Frequently Asked Questions about Nicomenthyl

Mechanism of action and properties

Once absorbed through the skin barrier, Menthyl nicotinate is slowly hydrolyzed into its original components: Niacin and Menthol.
Menthol has a refreshing effect, while Niacin generates a sensation of warmth and enhances skin microcirculation (mild modulated vasodilation). With no irritation or sensitization.
Furthermore, Niacin triggers a complex cascade of biochemical reactions that produce one of the most important cellular coenzymes, NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide). NAD plays a pivotal role in hundreds of enzymatic reactions, including those related to energy (ATP) production, many reduction-oxidation metabolic reactions, the Krebs cycle, as well as many others involved in cell signaling within the immune system, DNA repair, epithelial cell renewal, the synthesis of particular lipids (ceramides) essential to skin barrier functionality.

A Doppler Laser Blood-flow Velocity Test has been carried out on twenty volunteers of both sexes, using a topical preparation containing 3% of Nicomenthyl, compared to a negative control (placebo). Increases in microcirculatory flow values reached remarkable levels, up to nearly 150% at 30 minutes and 90% at 60 minutes after application, without any irritating or sensitizing effects. The main benefits of such enhanced blood flow are : a) increased supply of oxygen, nutrients and glucose b) removal of cellular waste products.

Recent studies have confirmed that a very high rate of penetration occurs, reaching 53.8% of the applied dose in only 30 minutes. The whole process of skin absorption gets practically completed in a period of 24 hours after application.

Nicomenthyl, being a powerful skin microcirculation enhancer (thanks to its time-release transcutaneous delivery of Vitamin B3), has deep beneficial effects on hair follicle cycling.
The increased blood flow generated by Nicomenthyl in the hairbulb zone is essential for oxygenating, transporting nutrients and glucose, removing cellular waste products.
Such functions are instrumental in preventing excessive hair loss and promoting hair fullness.

Yes, it is. The time-release high transcutaneous delivery of Vitamin B3 and the enhancement of skin microcirculation produced by Nicomenthyl are key factors for oxygenating, transporting nutrients and glucose, removing cellular waste products in all types of skin.

In some cases it can even improve it. As a matter of fact, Nicomenthyl, because of its high boiling point, may act as a fixative of the more volatile fractions, thus reducing their vanishing rate and bettering the whole fragrance longevity.

Because such high concentrations are useless and needless. For concentrations higher than those recommended, the amount of niacin released into the skin by the hydrolyzation of menthyl nicotinate could produce a vasodilation (niacin-flush) much stronger than necessary, and that result could be bothersome though still not dangerous.

Nicomenthyl may be used in all kinds of cosmetic products at the following recommended concentrations:
Face Products: 0.5 – 1%
Body Products: 0.5 – 3%

The sensorial strenght of Nicomenthyl depends: 1) on its concentration in the finished product 2) on the type of cosmetic formulation (water-based emulsion, hydroalcoholic lotions, fatty or anhydrous compositions, etc. 3) on the presence or absence in formulation of carriers such as: solubilizers, glycols, alcohols, light oils with high spreading values, etc. 4) on the body area where the product is applied.
The best way to evaluate the sensorial strength and longevity of Nicomenthyl is to apply on the lips a cosmetic water-based composition containing it at a concentration of 3%.

Through the two moieties of its molecule (i.e. the niacinic vaso-active warming moiety and the menthyl cooling one), Nicomenthyl, duly dosed and solubilized in cosmetic finished products, exerts also a kind of “modulator” and synergistic effect over several other sensorial agents. These, when used in combination with Nicomenthyl, extend their efficacy in time with a less aggressive impact on the skin.
An example of this is the result obtained when Nicomenthyl is used in combination with Menthol: the refreshing effect of Menthol becomes sort of softened, modulated and dramatically extended with less unpleasant side effects.
A similar modulating action occurs with the warming sensorial agents (i.e. those which activate the heat-sensitive thermo-receptors), such as Vanillyl butyl ether, Methyl nicotinate, Ginger essential oil, etc.: the menthyl moiety of Nicomenthyl molecule produces a sort of “calming”, modulating effect, which results in a more gentle, pleasant and persistent warmth sensation.

The unique and modulated sensory effect which characterizes Nicomenthyl is particularly long-lasting. Its typical fresh tingling sensation can still be perceived even one hour after the application, depending of course on the concentration being used and the type of finished product containing it.