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TiL, ou l’histoire d’un défi de formulation

TiL, or the story of a formulation challenge

TiL is a beauty and self-care brand, holistic because it is created from the holistic tree par excellence, the liden tree .

He was the one who guided the entire creative process .

Him, or rather them, the hundred or more than a hundred-year-old linden trees , rooted for generations in our family estate in Dordogne . Who have withstood many storms and who, even very damaged for some, have found in themselves (and among themselves because they help each other), an incredible force of regeneration to start again with a vengeance .

With their astonishing powers on the skin, body and mind , they gave birth to TiL and its cosmetic, nutri-cosmetic and perfume ranges.

We wanted to write this series of articles on the scientific behind the scenes of TiL, which has the rare distinction of not only being a natural, local, clean, vegan and ultra-sensory brand . It is also a brand that required 3 years of R&D , under the leadership of the greatest experts , where everything we put forward has been scientifically proven. Because we wanted to promote this incredible tree, used for centuries for its virtues (to the point that Pliny the Elder already called it “ the doctor tree ”), through 21st century Science, biotechnology and neuroscience.

Today, in this 3rd episode, we interview Daniel Joutard, founder and director of Laboratoire Savoir des Peuples , expert in natural cosmetics, who formulated TiL products.

A formulation challenge to reconcile naturalness, sensoriality and effectiveness , with an additional degree of complexity , by having to build the formulas around an exclusive active ingredient, Tiliactiv4®, a raw material combining extracts of flowers, leaves, branches and fresh buds, harvested on the family estate in Dordogne.


Daniel Joutard, you are the founder and director of the Laboratoire Savoir des Peuples.

Yes, we are a cosmetics laboratory located in the heart of Paris and our job is to develop natural skincare products for brands.

I don't have a background as a chemist, and I arrived in this world via plants for which I have an old passion , and from plants I wanted to work on extracts , and extracts on products .

What motivated you to put your expertise in natural formulation at the service of TiL?

It's already a meeting , the one with the founders , who are enthusiastic and full of passion .

Then, it's a story that is true . When we work on cosmetics, we work on a story, on sensoriality, on effectiveness and TiL really works on all these aspects of creation. We have the creation of a sector, of an ingredient , both familiar and very particular, and TiL controls and masters this production chain, from their field to the point of sale ; It's rare , so it makes the story extremely interesting and rich to create formulas around.

What is motivating when working with products with a traced and marked origin like it is the case in this particular story, is that there are several challenges in terms of formulation . In fact, when we use ingredients from suppliers, originally designed for cosmetics, everything is already marked out.

Whereas here, with Dordogne Linden trees, we are working on a raw ingredient which will then be highlighted behind, and there are stabilization issues because these are ingredients which are very rich in anti-oxidants, and we knows that this can have consequences for example in terms of coloring on the products. There is a real technical challenge to stabilize this within a cream or a product, while maintaining the effectiveness of the extract.

Is it usual to work with an exclusive asset?

It's quite original to work with brands that will control the complete chain, from the start of production to the marketing of a product; These are relatively rare things.

Most of the time, to create a product, we will assemble raw materials that already exist and are accessible to as many people as possible. In the case of TiL, we are dealing with a local ingredient on which we will be constrained by time, duration, season , so that makes the development more complicated , but at the same time more exciting. It is true luxury!


What is the process of developing a formula?

To develop a treatment and a formula there are different stages, we first meet with the founders to try to understand exactly what they have in mind.

Then, we will work on 3 dimensions , on the story, but in the case of TiL, the story is already made up, so our work will rather be to think about how to highlight it, as well as this magical ingredient . We are going to work on sensoriality, and there has been a lot of work done on the perfume level, with the note created by Francis Kurkdjian , and we are going to work on effectiveness, which we obviously have via the Linden extract , and which we will try to highlight with a selection of other natural active ingredients.

Then, we will move on to the development and prototyping phase, and make several proposals. When you're lucky and you understand TiL's expectations very well, it can last 4 months, or even more if the development is more complicated. We then carry out a testing phase for 2 to 4 months depending on the complexity of the products.

How did you work on the galenics of the different products?

The complexity in developing TiL's products is combining several things. It's already difficult and complicated to make extremely natural products while preserving great sensoriality , but here we also have a linden extract . It's great, but for us, as a formulator, it's more complicated because, as soon as we touch raw materials , we will have volatility, variation, evolution over time. that we need to manage. So it's managing to master all these contradictions at the same time that makes the development of TiL quite demanding .

What are the characteristics of the different formulas?

  • The complexity of Baume Qui Ressource (the Regenerating Night Balm) is to achieve a product that is rich, present but not too much . As soon as we work with rich natural products, we need to use vegetable oils , the problem being that they often have a somewhat heavy finish. We must therefore be able to find the right adjustment to have this presence, this nutrition, this richness , with a slightly evanescent effect , and this adjustment is always a little complicated in natural cosmetics.
  • Their Soothing Cleansing & Make up remover gel , "La Gelée à Fleur de Peau" is a product that I really like because it is both quite simple in its construction and quite complicated. Unlike emulsions where we mix oils and water, here we are on a single phase, and the difficulty is to achieve the right level of viscosity , that is to say gelling . Often the jellies in the natural version are quite sticky, and here we have worked on gelling based on algae derivatives which allows us to have a much softer touch. 
  • For the body lotion, named "Le Lait Corps et Ame ", the challenge is to have a texture that is both fluid and spreads well , penetrates quickly , is not sticky and has a very soft and silky finish .
  • Concerning the Cleansing Shower Gel, it is a product that seems relatively simple but the challenge is to really highlight the perfume which is the star of the product. However, often the foaming agents we use have a lingering odor and we have to find the right combination of foaming agents to achieve the full expression of the perfume , while maintaining great pleasure and comfort of application.

How did you manage to reconcile naturalness, sensoriality and efficiency?

The secret to being able to combine things that are a little contradictory or which may seem so, and this is what was interesting in the process of creating TiL products, was to combine our demands and our know-how of naturalness ( our historical profession), with for TiL the requirement of Lionel de Benetti which guided us, of galenics and sensoriality . Combining this dual requirement gave results that were very interesting.

How did you manage to have such a high percentage of natural formulas, while being so sensory and effective?

Developing a good product means having very high demands on a maximum of possible dimensions : it means pushing naturalness to the maximum, sensoriality to the maximum, effectiveness to the maximum , and then it means making trade-offs.
Good products are those that manage to push the cursors as far as possible based on an initial need . Making a product that is absolutely natural but that no one will want to use is not necessarily a good idea. We can sometimes include in the formulas products that are derived from green chemistry or chemistry , provided of course that they are safe and that they significantly increase efficiency or pleasure of use .

For example, each time we use a chemical preservative , it will always be a preservative that will be mild , potentially usable as an organic product , and always this one because we cannot use another. Preservatives are both mandatory and necessary because, as soon as we have products that contain water , they are fragile and sensitive to contamination during use. We must protect them, because we must put products on the market that are safe and can be stored over time, in good conditions over several months.

TiL formulas are both green and clean , meaning that they aim to preserve the skin and the environment, with a strong focus on the plant-based which is the essential part of the formulation approach.



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