what is lignin? Lignopure

Written by: Juliana Carrizosa – Product Innovation Specialist at Lignopure


“No beige allowed, and no light brown, and no off-white… We need whiter white, immaculate white…”. These are common requirements that cosmetic formulators often receive in regard of the development of skincare products. This is not surprising because according to color psychology, the white color is associated with an image of purity, cleanliness, and safety. Consequently, this has led to the misconception that white cosmetic formulations are more effective than their colored contra parts which then are placed in a different category. With this said, it is no wonder that naturally colored cosmetic multifunctional and active ingredients have problems penetrating the world of personal care, especially skin care.

Lignin, a naturally colored multifunctional in a world of white skincare products

Lignin, one of the most interesting bioactive molecules found in plants, has faced a similar problem due to its characteristic brown color, which comes from its plant of origin. Although lignin’s high added value and multiple benefits in cosmetics have been extensively demonstrated, its intrinsic brown color has been often considered undesirable for certain personal care category products because it might interfere with the desired color of the final cosmetic product. What is important to remark is that removing or reducing the chromophores that give lignin its natural brown hue, would result in the diminishing of its naturality and active properties due to the alteration of its molecular structure via chemical processes.

A change in cosmetic consumer demands

Luckily, the increasing popularity of “skinimalism” in the form of natural multifunctional products and the bigger demand of color inclusive beauty products is shifting the market and has started to push major brands to reconsider their formulation standards. On one side, “skinimalism” emphasizes a more natural approach to skincare and makeup, focusing on using fewer products that have multiple benefits to simplify their beauty routines. On the other hand, people are embracing their natural skin tones and looking for cosmetic products that enhance and celebrate their unique features.

With this being said, we at Lignopure are proud to launch the first upcycled lignin-based ingredient line for cosmetic formulations, LignoBase.

LignoBase: natural color meets functionality

Besides LignoBase’s sustainability aspects and inherent multifunctional properties each LignoBase variant has a brown color with a distinctive undertone, which helps formulators to simplify their skin tone formulation processes by reducing the need of using multiple combinations of red, yellow and black iron oxides as well as decreasing the undesirable white-cast effect that multiple products with SPF have. This makes LignoBase a perfect bio-based multifunctional of course for color cosmetics but also for inclusive skin and sun care products.

In the multifunctional cosmetics category, LignoBase provides a subtle touch of color that enhances the natural look of the skin without appearing heavy or overdone. Together with lignin’s natural protective benefits like formulation and skin antioxidant properties and SPF-boosting benefits, LignoBase helps brands and manufacturers to create skinimalist products that protect the skin and give a natural makeup look to the consumer. A multitalented ingredient for multipurpose products!

In brief, if you are looking for a sustainable and natural way to color and simultaneously boost the skin protection capacities of your cosmetic formulations to meet the constantly growing inclusivity and minimalism trends in the market, our new LignoBase ingredient line is your best ally.





Vishtal, A., and Kraslawski, A. (2011). “Challenges in industrial applications of technical lignins”, BioRes. 6(3), 3547-3568.