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The star in­gre­di­ent in Ve­ri­phy’s skin­care line was dis­cov­ered by ac­ci­dent when a mi­cro­bi­ol­ogy ex­per­i­ment with non-GMO On­tario sweet corn went wrong at the Univer­sity of Guelph. When sci­en­tists stud­ied the con­tents of the shelved beaker, they found that it con­tained glyco­gen, a form of glu­cose used to fuel cells. (In skin, it helps with the pro­duc­tion of elastin, col­la­gen and hyaluronic acid.) They also found that this va­ri­ety of phy­to­glyco­gen ap­pears to love wa­ter. “It will ab­sorb and hold onto it, so that’s what gave [the sci­en­tists] the idea to look into skin­care,” says Ali­son Crum­ble­hulme, founder and pres­i­dent of Ve­ri­phy. Each of the three prod­ucts—a lac­tic acid serum, a mois­tur­izer and an eye cream—uses 200 per cent more of the ac­tive than what is typ­i­cally used in a prod­uct, says Jes­sica Ki­zovki, lead for­mu­la­tor. “It’s not a cheap in­gre­di­ent, but we re­ally wanted to power pack it,” she says of the phy­to­glyco­gen. It also al­lowed her to forgo us­ing sil­i­cones. “By in­creas­ing the dosage, I got not only a bet­ter ef­fect but also a vel­vety feel.”

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