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Beta-Carotene is an organic compound that is a strongly colored red-orange pigment abundant in fungi, plants, and fruits. It is a member of the carotenes, terpenoids (isoprenoids) synthesized biochemically from eight isoprene units, thus having 40 carbons.

Dietary beta-carotene is a provitamin A compound, converting in the body to retinol (vitamin A). It has rich content in foods like carrots, pumpkin, spinach, and sweet potato. It is used as a dietary supplement and may be prescribed to treat erythropoietic protoporphyria, an inherited condition of sunlight sensitivity.

Beta-carotene is the most common carotenoid in plants. When used as a food coloring, it has the E number E160a. Its structure was deduced in 1930.

By 102% Yield - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=102363808

Effects in Cosmetics

Beta-Carotene has a variety of effects and applications, some of which are listed below:

As an antioxidant, it protects the skin from free radical damage.
As a natural pigment, it enhances the product's appeal.
Helps protect the skin from UV damage.

Source or Extraction Method

Beta-Carotene is widely found in nature in many plants and plant extracts.
Industrially, beta-carotene is extracted from fruits abundant in carotenoids, commonly using column chromatography. It can also be extracted from algae like Dunaliella salina. The separation of beta-carotene from the mixture of other carotenoids is based on the polarity of a compound. Being a non-polar compound, it is separated with a non-polar solvent such as hexane.

Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals 




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