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Why can’t the active ingredients pass through the skin barrier?
The active ingredients of cosmetics are largely divided into fat-soluble and water-soluble ingredients.
Fat-soluble ingredients are Vitamin A/Retinol, Ceramide, Fat-Soluble peptide and etc.
Collagen Hyaluronic acid, Vitamin C, and Adenosine are water-soluble ingredients.
The skin barrier consists of keratinocytes and lipids to protect and prevent external harmful substances from entering and penetrating.
Water-soluble ingredients can pass Keratinocytes, but not block fat-soluble components.
Lipids let fat-soluble components to pass through but blocks water-soluble components.
The problem is that the skin barrier is constructed
as overlap structure of keratinocytes and lipids.
This insinuates that water-soluble ingredients cannot pass through lipids,
and fat-soluble ingredients cannot pass through keratinocytes,
hence none of the ingredients can easily pass through the skin barrier.
In fact, skin barrier penetration rate of well-known active ingredients is very low such as Vitamin C resulting 0% and Retinol 0.28% according to
“The Study on the Skin Penetration of Cosmetic Ingredient with in vivo Raman Spectroscopy and in vitro Franz Cell”.
Source: Se-rim Jeon, Min-he Han, Dae-gyun Jung, Jae-seong Hwang (2014).
In vivo skin permeation measurement and in vitro comparative evaluation of functional cosmetic ingredients using a Raman spectroscopic skin analyzer. Vol 40 No. 1 
Altum technology™ penetrates even to underneath of skin barrier using Raphitox™ as a vehicle.
The active ingredients are firmly bounded to the vehicle so that Altum™ is not separated or dissolved by the moisture and oil in the skin barrier as it passes through the skin barrier.
After that, when the active ingredient crosses the skin barrier and reaches the epidermis, it reacts with the glutathione enzyme in the skin and begins to separate.
~0.3wt% of glutathione enzyme is present in human skin and Altum™ is precisely designed to release the active ingredient under this concentration.