Papaya (Carica papaya) is native to tropical America, spanning the area from southern Mexico to the Andes. They are considered to be "fast-growing, woody, large herb” plants that attain heights between 3 and 4 meters. Branching is only typical of injured plants; and papaya thrives in warm well-drained climes. Spanish exploration brought the papaya to the Caribbean, the Pacific Islands, and back to Europe by the mid 17th century.
The enzymes within fruit as well as virtually all other organisms are natural catalysts (modify or increase the rate of a reaction without being consumed by the reaction) that regulate intrinsic functions such as fruit ripening and color changes in the plants’ leaves. Most enzymes are proteins, which lose functional activity as they denature.
In personal care, fruit enzymes have been used as a safe means of exfoliation. Exfoliation is an important segment of a skincare regimen, which serves to remove the outer layer of dead skin cells that traps both bacteria and sebum. Papaya contains the proteolytic enzyme papain, which helps to gently breakdown and digests large proteins that have accumulated on the body, hair, and scalp. Fruit enzymes, particularly proteolytic enzymes, serve as a safe means of removing product build-up. Papain in papaya is attributed with soothing skin irritations. It is also capable of retaining proteolytic activity over a wide pH range.
Sustainably manufactured, Papaya is extracted from the unused residual fruit pulp, along with the intact chaperone proteins, which help increase stability and maximize shelf life.