An open-label clinical study to evaluate the dermal safety and post-application effect of an oil control moisturizer

European J Biomed Pharmaceutical Sci. 2016;3(10):462–66.
Oily skin (seborrhoea) is one of the most common cosmetic complaints during adulthood, which is caused due to excess skin oil (sebum). And it is an important factor that could result in the formation of acne, oily scalp and comedo. Increased sebum secretion can also be seen during pregnancy and menopause because of hormonal imbalances, further leading to increased activity of sebaceous glands.

In oily skin, follicular reservoir is filled with large quantities of sebum, which further leaks onto the skin surface, thus making the skin look shiny, thick and dull-coloured with coarse pores, pimples and other blemishes. However, this condition peaks during adolescence and starts decreasing as you age.

Although several antibacterial cleansing lotions are available in the market, natural water-based, oil-free moisturizers are believed to be a safer bet. For example, policosanol, a natural sebum regulator, obtained from sugarcane wax and standardized to contain not less than 60% Octocosanol.



To evaluate safety and efficacy of oil control moisturizer containing policosanol in participants with excess facial oiliness.

Study Design:

  • Seventeen healthy volunteers (male=8 and female=9; age: 18–50 years) were included in the current study
  • They were asked to apply the oil control moisturizer on their face in a circular motion, on cheeks, forehead and ala of nose, once per day for 2 weeks
  • Participants were followed-up regularly (i.e. on day 0, day 7 and 14) by the investigational team
  • Dermal safety was the primary outcome, while change in the skin appearance (i.e. reduction in face skin oiliness and soothing, and smoothing and softening effects) were secondary endpoints

Results and Discussion:

  • Oiliness of the skin was found to be drastically decreased by the end of the study when assessed using oily skin self-assessment scale (OSSAS) (Fig. 1A) and oily skin impact scale (OSIS) (Fig. 1B)
  • Similarly, number of oil absorbing pads used for wiping the facial oil was also reduced significantly upon application of the product in a time-dependent manner
  • "After effects" of oil control moisturizer was found to be excellent with 90% of participants experiencing much softer and smoother skin by the end of the study
  • Volunteers were also of the opinion that application of oil control moisturizer was beneficial
  • No adverse effects were reported by the volunteers


Hence, it was concluded that application of oil control moisturizer containing policosanol was beneficial in controlling excess oiliness of the skin with smoother and softer skin in healthy volunteers.

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