Pearl powder has been used in traditional Chinese medicine with a long history, in the treatment of acne, eye diseases, tuberculosis, to stimulate skin healing and whitening skins.
The use of pearl powder in China as medicine and as cosmetic could date back at least to 320 AD. Pearl powder was an ingredient in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), in the treatment of eye diseases, tuberculosis and to prevent heart attacks. The empress Wu Ze Tian (625 AD – 705 AD) used pearl powder internally and on her skin. The medical book Bencao Gangmu of the Ming dynasty claimed that pearl can stimulate new skin growth and healing, release toxins, and remove sun damage and age spots. Pearl powder is widely believed to help improve the appearance of the skin, and is used as a cosmetic by royal families in Asia. It is also used as a treatment for acne. Some studies have claimed that pearl powder can stimulate the skin’s fibroblasts, help regenerate collagen, and accelerate healing of certain skin conditions, wounds, and burns. Pearl powder contains a number of amino acids, over 30 trace minerals, and a high concentration of calcium. In Chinese medicine, it is used as an anti-inflammatory and detoxification agent, and as a relaxant. The calcium content is considered beneficial for calcium deficient persons with issues such as osteoporosis. A typical dose is 1 gram of pearl powder taken by mouth, traditionally mixed into water or tea, twice weekly. Excessive doses may cause calcium toxicity. The powder is also used to treat stomach and intestinal conditions such as indigestion and chronic constipation. It is claimed to minimize pain from sores and ulcers, and to help reduce the sores and ulcers themselves.
Difference between Water-insoluble Pearl Powder and Water-soluble Pearl Powder
Water-soluble pearl powder is usually treated with acid (mostly lactic acid) or enzymes to transfer water-insoluble calcium carbonate into water-soluble calcium lactate as well as producing water soluble lactate such as calcium salt, strontium salt and magnesium salt. In addition to calcium supplementation, it can also produce various nourishing and tonifying ingredients such as iron lactate, ammonium ferric lactate, potassium lactate, sodium lactate, bismuth lactate and manganese lactate. However, the amino acids are more or less dissolved by acid which leads to the content of amino acids is lower than that of water-insoluble pearl powder. However the absorptivity of various trace elements such as P, Fe, In, Mn, Ca, Se, Ge, Cu and V in water-soluble pearl powder is much higher than water-insoluble ones because the trace elements in water-soluble pearl powder are in ionic form which is easier being absorbed in our body. Therefore we can see water-soluble pearl powder and water-insoluble pearl powder have their own advantages and disadvantages respectively. Water-soluble pearl powder has less amino acid content but has higher absorptivity of trace elements, vice versa. Clients could make a choice based on the form of the final products and the different emphasis on function requirements.
Identification of Pearl Powder
On the identification of pearl powder, there are many methods are mentioned on the internet. Some say you can apply pearl powder on your hands to see if there are shining spots; some say you can smell if there is burnt odor, etc. In fact from a professional point of view, the methods listed on the Internet are mostly unreliable and the two most professional methods are as:
1. Measuring the protein content of pearl powder, the protein content of shell powder is about from 1.0 to 1.5%, while the content of protein of real pearl powder (Water-soluble pearl powder is excepted) is from 1.8 to 2.2%.
2. The Infrared Spectra Analysis can also accurately identify whether the pearl powder is real by comparing the standard pearl powder spectrum to spectrum of the tested sample.
Nutrition Facts of Pearl Powder
Pearl powder contains high concentration of calcium; calcium activated accounts for 90-92% and pure calcium amount could reach to 38-40%. Protein content is about 2% to 3% and 18 types amino acids could be obtained after protein being hydrolyzed including 7 essential amino acids. In addition, pearl powder also contains vitamin B, taurine as well as more than 20 types trace element such as zinc, sodium, iron, calcium, magnesium, copper, manganese and strontium.
|Amino Acids||Content (mg/100g)||Description|
|Aspartic acid||245.2||Treats hepatitis, cirrhosis and hepatic coma|
|Threonine||38.9||Components of several enzymes|
|Glutamate||415||Treats Tinnitus, Deafness, Otitis Media, Allergic Dermatitis, Rhinitis, Insomnia|
|Glycine||458||For skin beauty and Promotes Skin Collagen Cell Regeneration|
|Alanine||399.5||Treats Vascular Diseases|
|Cysteine||445.2||Relates to immune function|
|Arginine||92||Treats Endocrine Diseases and Anti-aging|
|Methionine||23.1||Enhances Skin Elasticity|
|Isoleucine||103.7||Relates to hair growth|
|Leucine||155.1||Promotes body growth and gastric juice secretion|
|Tyrosine||52.8||Treatmes Thyroid Disease, promotes body growth|
|Phenylalanine||176.8||Treats Gastrointestinal Diseases|
|Lysine||110.9||Promotes body Growth, Treats Anemia and Soft Disease|
|Histidine||11.5||Treats Gastric and Duodenal Ulcers, Anemia, Arthritis|
|Arginine||108.1||Produces pain, expands blood vessels and treats hypertension|
|Proline||41.1||Treats placental retention and skin diseases|
|2-aminoethylsulfonic acid||32.1||Enhances the cardiovascular system.|
Characteristics and Precautions for Use of Ultra-fine and Nano Pearl Powder
1. Non-water-soluble pearl powder(food grade, cosmetic grade and nano grade) adopt fresh water pear as the raw materials and is processed via physical grinding at low temperature with no additives of shells or preservatives. And the particle size exceeds the standard stipulated in Chinese Pharmacopoeia as 200 mesh size. And the particle size can reach to 150000 mesh size for different grade. The powder is in offwhite color with characteristic odor of pearl, slightly fishy smell, physically and chemically stable in neutral and dry environment under the temperature from -50℃ to 150℃.
2. Since this type of pearl powder is non-water-soluble, the product will precipitate in water solution after setting for a long time(The smallerthe particle size, the longer precipitation time it will take). And our suggestion for finished products are better in form of powder, lotion and cream.
3. Agglomeration in rice-shaped or bean-shaped lumps always happen for nano pearl powder due to its extreme fineness; which may make customers mistaken the powder is affected with dampness or in large particle size. Agglomeration is less happened for ultra-fine pearl powder comparatively.
4. This type of pearl powder has characteristic fishy smell and taste, especially strong at the moment the packaged is opened. And the smaller the particle size, the stronger smell it will be. This is due to its own physical and biological characteristics rather than any quality problem. In addition, we could customize the pearl powder without fishy smell and taste by adding smell-masking agent, and this kind of product is suggested for external use only.
5. When used with other materials for lotion or cream, it’s suggested to be evenly and fully mixed via dispersing equipment like ultrasonic type. If using regular mechanical mixing devices for lotion, liquid, cream or powder products, it’s suggested to operate according to standard materials mixing procedure and ensure there is sufficient time to stir and disperse.
6. The pearl powder can’t be used in acidic or strongly alkaline environments or should be avoided; because the powder will become unstable so as to affect its final using effect.
7. The pearl powder should be stored in sealed condition and kept away from moisture. Although the powder is not sensitive to temperature, it should not be kept in high temperature environment for a long time.
8. If the inner packing of the product is damaged and the powder leaks, the powder is not suggested to use because it may be contaminated.
9. Suggested internal dosage of food-grade pearl powder: 300 to 600mg each time, once or twice a day;
Suggested external dosage: 300mg to 600mg each time for nano pearl powder, 1000mg to 3000mg each time for ultra-fine pearl powder; once or twice a week. In addition, It is suggested to clean the face thoroughly so as to avoid the adverse reactions such as rash caused by excessive residue of powder blocking the pore.
10. Compared with other pearl powder products in the market or DIY powder, our pearl powder is much finer with very small particle size and easy to be absorbed by skin; thus it’s suggested to start from a smaller amount in case of pore blockage, rash and other symptoms caused by excessive absorption.
11. Although our pearl powder is 100% natural, there is still have chances of allergy for 1% to 2% users. If allergy happens, please stop using the pearl powder immediately and the symptoms will subside several days later. If it is an serious allergy, please seek for your doctor.
Characteristics and Precautions for Use of Water-soluble Pearl Powder
1. Our water-soluble pearl powder is made through enzymolysis by lactalase with a slight yellow or off white appearance and slight sour taste. The PH value is at about 4 to 5 and particle size about 200 mesh.
2. The product has a strong hygroscopicity. When open the package, please take the air humidity into consideration and carry out air dehumidification when necessary.
3. The products is instant soluble in hot water. The suggest temperature for hot water in solubility test is 70 to 80℃. The dissolution rate will slow down with the decrease of water temperature.
4. If the product need to be dried, the drying temperature should not be higher than 80℃ or it may melt under excessive temperature. In drying process, it’s suggested to stir the powder to ensure it drys evenly and avoid caking.
5. The pearl powder can’t be used with other stronglyacidic or alkaline materials in case that it become unstable.
6. The product should be kept sealed during storage. The suggested storage temperature should not be higher than 30℃.
Please carry out efficacy test and related verification for cosmetic application.
7. If the inner packing of the product is damaged and the powder leaks, the powder is not suggested to use because it may be contaminated.
8. Suggested internal dosage is 300mg to 9mg each time, once or twice a day.
9. The range of calcium content in water soluble pearl powder is from 10% to 18% and the result may show some difference for different test method and different batch.
Pearl Powder Benefits
1. Beautify Skin
Pearl powder can solve the problems of face oil and dead skin as well as to help whitening skin. In specific, pearl powder can play an anti-aging role and make the skin refreshed, smooth and white by enhancing the activity of SOD. Free radical is the main cause of aging. As we age, metabolism slows down gradually and the ability of self-resistance to free radicals decreases; which will trigger the premature aging of skin and body organs. Pearl powder is rich in trace elements including manganese, copper , zinc and so on which are the components of making SOD. External use of pearl powder on face could promote the activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) in human skin, inhibit the synthesis of melanin and keep skin white. In addition, due to SOD has the function of scavenging free radicals, it also can prevent skin from aging and wrinkling. Therefore, pearl powder is often added into many kinds of cosmetics such as facial cream, lotion, facial cleanser, hair dye, hand cream and so on.
2. Muscle Regeneration and Wound Repair
Pearl powder has a good repair effect on skin trauma (knife cut, burn, scald, etc.). This is because pearl powder can promote the growth of collagen cells in human body, and collagen cells are the main contributors to promote skin regeneration. Pearl powder also has a significant anti-inflammatory effect, which can inhibit the regeneration of inflammatory cells and prevent further deterioration of wounds. External use of pearl powder on wounds can fill tissue gap, adhere to vascular tissue, diminish inflammation, promote the growth of collagen cells, promote the regeneration of body cells. According to clinical trials, carefully clean the wound with normal saline or hydrogen peroxide before treatment with pearl powder; and then evenly apply with a thin layer of pearl powder on the wound, change it once a day. For would with blisters, it will have a better effect for wound with blisters if not break the blisters or tear off the surface skin before apply with pearl powder. For knife cut and abscesses that have already festered, it’s better to wipe off the pus and clean the wound before apply with pearl powder for a better treatment effect.
The immune system is not only the barrier of human body to prevent disease invasion, but also the resistance system after disease invades the body. If the immune system is dysfunctional, it will lead to a decline in disease prevention and resistance, especially to epidemic and infectious diseases. Pearl powder contains 18 kinds of amino acids, such as leucine, methionine and alanine. Amino acids are necessary for the growth and maturation of lymphoid tissues and organs, and have significant effects on the protein synthesis rate and the type of protein synthesis in cells. Long-term oral administration of pearl powder can effectively improve the activity of T and B lymphocyte in human immune system, thereby enhancing immune resistance.
2. Calcium Supplement
Modern nutritionists have studied that the amount of calcium for daily need for modern people is seriously imbalanced with the actual amount of calcium intake. As a new type of calcium supplement, pearl powder is becoming more and more popular and valued by consumers, and is known as “pearl calcium”. Pearl powder has a high calcium content; it contains 90-92% active calcium, of which pure calcium accounts for 38-40%. Intake of 600 mg per day is equivalent to taking 220-240 mg pure calcium. The pure calcium content of pearl powder is 4 times higher than that of calcium gluconate and it is a natural source of calcium which is much safer than other regular calcium supplement on the market. What’s more, the digestion and absorption rate of calcium is higher. There are two kinds of calcium supplements on the market as organic calcium and inorganic calcium whose absorption rate is between 25-32%; calcium gluconate around 27%, calcium citrate around 30%, ordinary pearl powder around 29%, and nano pearl powder having a higher absorption rate than 29%. This makes the pearl powder as an important calcium supplements compared with others.
3. Improve Sleep Quality
According to the records of Compendium of Materia Medica which is a masterpiece for Traditional Chinese Medicine in China, pearls can calm the mind and tranquilize the spirit. It is also recorded in the Pharmacopoeia of the People’s Republic of China that pearls have calming and tranquilizing effects and are used for palpitation and insomnia. Pearl powder contains a variety of amino acids and trace elements which can play a “soothing and calming” role in the brain center which can help to nourish those exhausted cells resulted by excessive excitement and calm them down after intake of pearl powder; and pearl powder is also helpful for children with epilepsy shock. For insomnia caused by emotional disorders, excitement, anxiety and depression, mental self-adjustment combined with pearl powder can effectively improve sleep quality.
4. Nourish the liver and improve the eyesight
Pearl powder is heart and liver meridians entered, has the effect of clearing away heat and detoxification, and can clear the liver-fire in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Liver is said controls the eyes in Traditional Chinese Medicine, and too much liver-fire will lead to blurred vision. Researches have found that selenium in pearl powder could enhance the transmission of visual nerve and improve visual acuity and zinc could promote axoplasmic transport of optic nerve and improve the metabolism and function of retinal and retinal pigment epithelial cells. The Pharmacopoeia of the People’s Republic of China states that “pearls have the function of improving eyesight and eliminating nebula”. Therefore there are a lot of eyedrops with pearl powder on the market in China which emphasize its effect of “improving the vision”.