Etnopharmacognostic survey on the natural ingredients used in folk cosmetics, cosmeceuticals and remedies for healing skin deseases in the inland Marches, Central-Eastern Italy

A. Pieroni, C.L. Quave, M.L. Villanelli, P. Mangino, G. Sabbatini, L. Santini, T. Boccetti, M. Profili, T. Ciccioli, L.G. Rampa, G. Antonini, C. Girolamini

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124 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

An ethnopharmaceutical Study focused on domestic cosmetics, cosmeceuticals, and remedies to heal skin diseases traditionally used in the inland part of the Marches region (Central-Eastern Italy) has been conducted. At present, traditional knowledge concerning home-made phytocosmetics is represented by both the remnants of an orally transmitted folk heritage and also by new forms of knowledge, sometimes coming from popular phytotherapeutical books and the mass media (Out of the scope of this survey), but also as a result of recent migration trends from Eastern Europe. We recorded approximately 135 cosmetic or cosmeceutical preparations prepared from more than 70 botanical species and a very few animal or mineral ingredients. Among the recorded preparations, developing a clear distinction amongst cosmetics, cosmeceuticals and pharmaceuticals for skin diseases is very problematic, confirming that in folk knowledge systems medicinal products for healing skin diseases and cosmetics have often been perceived as two poles of a continuum. Many of the quoted species represented well-known medicinal plants of the European phytotherapy, although we also recorded a few unusual plant taxa, which are briefly discussed under the perspective of their eventual phytochemical and/or phytopharmacological potentialities. Exotic drugs or precious essences, even native of the Mediterranean, were not quoted as ingredients for preparing perfumes and fragrances by the interviewees of the present study, thus indicating that popular cosmetic practices in rural Central Italy have taken a much separated path away from the cosmetic "know-how" of the aristocracy and high bourgeois classes of the last centuries. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331-344
JournalJournal of Ethnopharmacology
Volume91
Issue number2-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • traditional drugs sold
  • tanacetum-balsamita
  • ethnopharmacological survey
  • essential oil
  • plants
  • phytotherapy
  • extracts

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