The only one in the world
My most important job in the skincare industry is to improve your skin. This is always the foundation of my product development. The story about HERO, a one-of-a-kind-product in the world, is the symbol of exactly that.
Back in 2015, a chance-meeting with a Professor of Chemistry from the product development team at a Danish food factory led to the launch of HERO quite some years later.
The Professor had the wish to save the damaged hands of a worker among the kitchen staff at the factory; her hands were exposed repeatedly to water throughout the day, leaving them red and sore with a damaged skin barrier. His goal was to solve “The Why” of her skin issues. In the months to come we had many talks about skin and the disturbed pH level after contact with water.
Scientific studies documenting the skin's essential need for a stable pH value are the basis for the product development of HERO: these include, among other things, dry skin, dermatologically challenged skin such as psoriasis, eczema, rosacea, etc. and also the need for a stable pH value during wound healing. It's really interesting reading, if you ask a skincare nerd like me, read more here.
So what does HERO exactly do?
HERO's purpose is solely to compensate for the disturbing effect of water, soap and hand sanitizer by stabilizing your skin's pH value, immediately after application. HERO also adds moisture, but the stabilized pH is its primary purpose.
The product development journey was challenging and also stalled along the way. Because creating something that does not exist and for which there is no prehistory… that was very exciting but also very difficult.
Three years later, we launched HERO pH solution, a one-of-a-kind product, and it was worth all the effort! It is, hands down, the product we receive the most wholesome and moving stories about from our consumers who touchingly share their experiences with their skin in face, body and/or scalp which has finally found peace and relief. This makes me so very happy.
It all starts with skin’s pH
The development of HERO was centered around one specific thing: the skin's pH value is essential for the skin to be balanced. After a night's sleep, when the skin is undisturbed, the pH value of well-functioning skin is between 4.5 and 5.5 - i.e. slightly acidic.
On the outermost part of the skin lies an ultra-thin, protective layer called the acid mantle, also called the skin's immune system. The acid mantle is naturally acidic.
When we shower in the very alkaline, calcareous water that we have in the Nordics which typically has a pH level of 7 to 8.5 (cf. the Danish Drinking Water Decree), we push the skin's pH value in an alkaline direction, and thereby, the pH gets thrown off-balance. In addition to water, the skin's pH value can also be thrown off-balance by soap, detergent, hand sanitizer and more.
In a way, it's simple math: The goal is for skin's pH value to between 4,5 and 5,5 in pH.
If the pH value is not in place, the skin is challenged. For well-functioning skin, an imbalance can lead to dryness, and for dermatologically challenged skin, an imbalance is an additional stress factor. You can dive deeper into that here. (link til UK En hud i balance artikel).
HERO is your step zero
In development we decided HERO should be a water-like solution, albeit thicker than water. Not a cream, serum nor soap. HERO is your step ZERO: the first product you apply after showering, washing your hands or cleansing your face and before your following skin care steps.
How is HERO different from the rest?
Perhaps you are thinking: "but many skin care brands talk about pH value?"
And that is absolutely true. It is a must for anyone who develops skin care. When we develop a cream, for example, we ensure that it is at a pH value of approx. 5, so that it does not disturb the acid mantle. Products like acid masks must be low in pH in order to work, and hand sanitizers must be high. Some products definitely stand out, but otherwise, most of the skincare industry’s products are on the same level as the skin, as they would be a stress factor for the skin otherwise.
What HERO can do, as the only one around, is to restore the skin's optimal pH immediately after it has been disturbed.
Award-winning crowd favourite
Since its launch, HERO has proven its worth by bringing home several awards from Denmark and Europe: This includes, among other, awards from the Danish Beauty Award, Beauty Space award, Dutch Beauty Award, two awards from the Global Green Beauty Award and from The Beauty Shortlist.
Consumers also express their love for HERO. We first experienced it with our large test panel in the product development phase, but we have also received a multitude of stories from consumers who experience relief and healing from e.g. dry skin, itchy scalp, chapped hands, eczema and rosacea. This has made HERO a real bestseller at Karmameju.
*Based on a questionnaire among women aged 25-60 with approx. 200 respondents in August, 2022.
HERO is the product I am most proud to have contributed with to the skin care industry. Although it does not embrace the sense-awakening aromatherapy, or is packed with nature's bioactive superstars, HERO solves the most important task from the beginning: to ensure the basic element for healthy skin, a pH value in balance, and this is essential for healthy skin.
I hope you have our HERO or another skin care hero in your routine that ensures your skin is both calm and balanced.