Mining expired competitive intellectual property is an excellent innovation strategy to quickly create new IP/products. It’s one that I have successfully used by routinely monitoring competitive patents that have expired or are about to expire. And an easy way to do this is by using the FPO free patent search engine (freepatentsonline.com).
L’Oreal US has 83 US beauty-care patents expiring in 2013 (20 years after the filing date of the earliest application). L’Oreal normally patents in the US, covering marketed products or significant technology. My focus with the following list is on practical patents that formulators could use to innovate now.
- US 5395624 claims di or tri caffeoylquinic derivatives as skin lightening actives.
- US 5449510 claims oil in water emulsions containing an ethoxylated polydimethylsiloxane with an HLB of 9-12 and a MW of 2-7K.
- US 5925337 claims waterproof mascara compositions containing aqueous solutions of film-forming polymers (no emulsifiers are needed). The preferred example contained Kerasol (Croda), and excellent consumer data was shown with and without. (EU: Kerasol)
- US 5993831 claims nanoparticles produced by adding active solubilized using a water soluble solvent to a mixture of surfactant and water. An example was given using Octyl Methoxycinnamate, Eudrait L100, ethanol, and water. The particle size was 600nm. SPF data was higher using the OMC nanoparticle versus conventionally emulsified OMC. (EU: Octyl Methoxycinnamate)
- US 6083491 claims pigments coated using aqueous cationic polymer dispersions. Good stability and adhesion to skin is claimed.
- US 5427771 claims flake titanium dioxide as an IR scattering agent. The preferred material was Luxelen Silk D (Sumitomo). (EU: flake titanium dioxide)
- US 5436230 claims slimming products with improved efficacy containing growth factor peptides and caffeine.
- US 5538716 claims Octocrylene to stabilize Avobenzone. This is a very important patent, since Octocrylene is widely used to stabilize Avobenzone. (EU: Octocrylene | Avobenzone)
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