The awareness of some harmful side effects of the chemicals contained in synthetic cosmetics has increased the demand for herbal-based cosmetic products today. White pitahaya fruit and peel methanol extracts were prepared to determine their usage potential in the cosmetic industry. Firstly, we investigated their antimicrobial activity against some test microorganisms using the disc diffusion assay. We also determined their minimal inhibition and minimal bactericidal or fungicidal concentrations. Then, we assayed the antimicrobial activity of a commercial cream containing white pitahaya extracts and the probiotic Lactobacillus fermentum MA-7 strain against the test microorganisms. Finally, we measured the sun protection factors of the white pitahaya fruit and peel extracts and the cream with the extracts. The white pitahaya fruit and peel extracts exhibited antimicrobial activity against the test microorganisms. The cream formulation containing a pitahaya fruit extract had the highest inhibition zone diameter of 11.25 mm against Escherichia coli O157:H7. The highest sun protection value among the extracts and cream with extracts was determined for peel extract as 6.66 and 23.34, respectively. The results indicate that pitahaya fruit and peel extracts have effective antibacterial and antifungal properties, as well as high sun protection factors, and therefore they could be used as natural preservatives in the cosmetic industry.
Extract, antimicrobials, probiotics, cream formulation, solar protection
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