The Roots of our Newest Ingredient

The Roots of our Newest Ingredient

We are continually researching new ingredients to optimize the effectiveness of our products. For decades, there has been little research on ingredients or development of products that could help to prevent or repigment grey hair. But now that we know genetics only account for about 30% of why hair turns grey, the scientific community and ingredient manufacturers have started to focus more on how to help people preserve their natural hair color.

These non-hereditary reasons for grey hair can stem from vitamin and mineral deficiencies, as well as oxidative stress - which causes the accumulation of free radical cells near the hair follicle. Antioxidants are essential in balancing free radical cells. When there are too many free radicals near the hair follicle, the production of pigment can be slowed or even stopped.

Early last year, we started to work with a new ingredient called Citrus Reticulata. A powerful, naturally derived antioxidant, Citrus Reticulata works to prevent the loss of pigment in the hair strand by stimulating the production of melanin. In Vitro studies showing the stimulation of melanin synthesis along with  an increase in melanogenisis and antioxidant activity is what made this ingredient so interesting.

Citrus Reticulata Extract is derived from mandarins. Our formula utilizes a unique variety called the  “Chios Mandarin,” which grows exclusively under very specific conditions that are optimally found on the island of Chios, where mandarins were introduced in the 13th century following the Genoese colonization. The island of Chios, which is also known for the mastic tree, has calcium-rich soil that is based on limestone. The stable temperatures and the Meltemi winds give a mild microclimate that protects the fruits from frost during the winter months.

One place in particular that the mandarins are still cultivated in a traditional way is Kampo, where one of the first organic farms in Greece was developed 25 years ago. As is typical of these secluded, historic settings, the orchard is surrounded by high walls made of natural stone.A grove comprises 1020 trees with mandarins, lemons, oranges, bitter oranges and bergamots. The Chios mandarins are carefully and sustainably harvested by hand.

The mandarins are often used to extract organic perfume essences. In the traditional small distillery, both the juice and the peel of the fruit are used for the gentle distillation process. After condensation, the mandarin oil floats on the water; and the two phases can thus be separated from each other. The result is an aromatic essence with the typical, genuine mandarin taste. The distillation process produces a rich and thick peel paste, called pomace. This is the starting material that is used to produce the new ingredient we use in To The Root.

The benefit of adding this ingredient to our products is that it acts as an antioxidant and stimulates melanin synthesis, which is the production of pigment that the body uses to give our hair its natural color. When the production of this pigment slows down, hair turns gray, and eventually white. Beyond the color change, the loss of pigment can effect the texture and density of our hair strands, making them appear more coarse, dull and dry.

To The Root serum works by being quickly absorbed into the scalp and providing antioxidants and a clinically efficacious peptide that work together to not only slow grey hair growth but also offer the potential of repigmentation. The addition of Citrus Reticulata Extract in To The Root further improves  its effectiveness by neutralizing free radicals and stimulating pigment production. For those that have been using To The Root before the addition of Citrus Reticulata, you will find that it still absorbs into the scalp easily, remains scent-free and contains no oils - so therefore leaves no residue.