JOHN JIMÉNEZ: WHAT WINNING THE HENRY MASO AWARD HAS DONE FOR ME
Life has been pretty busy for John Jiménez since he won the IFSCC Henry Maso Award for 2016, expanding his experience and opportunities both in his native Colombia and internationally. It also led to him being named ‘one to watch’ by C&T; in fact he was the inspiration for the magazine’s ‘one to watch’ series! Here John talks to us about what led him to entering the Henry Maso Award with his paper Application of Eye-Tracking Methodology for Fragrance Evaluation and subsequently where it has led him.
IFSCC: What made you choose the IFSCC as the place to publish your paper?
JOHN: I chose the IFSCC magazine for two reasons. The first was because it is one of the most prestigious cosmetic journals in the world and is always at the forefront of cosmetic science. This means the goal of many cosmetic chemists is to publish scientific articles in this important magazine, which has worldwide distribution and is a powerful tool to bring cosmetic knowledge everywhere. The second reason was because I very much like applying neuroscience techniques into cosmetics. This is a trending topic and I thought it could be a good chance to share my first findings with the cosmetics community. My publication was just a small first step because there is a lot of work to be done in this field.
IFSCC: In what way has winning the Henry Maso Award affected you and your career?
JOHN: Receiving this award has been an amazing experience. I feel honoured and fortunate to have had the chance to meet everyone on the IFSCC Praesidium. They seem to be very committed to the advancement of cosmetic science and to the development of the Federation with all countries.
This last year has been spectacular. I was again invited to be a member of the jury for the in-cosmetics innovation awards, held in London this year. We have just participated at the XXIII Colamiqc (Latin-American Congress of Cosmetic Chemists) in Cancún, Mexico from 15-17 May. This was very interesting because we presented, with my colleague Mauricio Guzmán, the synesthesia concept for cosmetics, which was well received at the congress. The IFSCC Praesidium were also attending and it was very nice to see all them. I have also again been invited to speak on market trends at the next in-cosmetics Latin America in Sao Paulo in September and at the world congress of trichology in Brazil in October, among others events. I am going to take on a new role as President of the Colombian Association of Cosmetic Chemists (Accytec) in the Bogota Chapter and from this position one of my aims is to promote participation, at IFSCC level, investigations conducted in Colombia.
IFSCC: C&T named you ‘one to watch’ and put you on their front cover. Was winning the IFSCC award anything to do with this?
JOHN: Absolutely, I have much to thank the C&T editorial team for, especially Rachel Grabenhofer and Jo-El Grossman for the interview, for covering the award and chiefly for the opportunity of being on the cover. This has also been an opportunity and a fantastic experience because I received many emails and messages from people around the world.
This will definitely be a nice lifetime memory for me and something I hope will inspire young researchers from the industry and academia. I invite them to participate in the Congresses/Conferences, further publications and to be closer to the IFSCC. I am also very grateful to C&T as I have had the opportunity to publish some articles with them and also with C&T Brazil, for which I have been writing the trends column since 2013.
IFSCC: What have winning the award and the C&T listing done for your profile?
JOHN: Receiving this Henry Maso Award has helped me to improve my professional position as I have been able to increase my contacts with companies, suppliers and universities considerably, enabling me to get easily closer to innovation in technologies and launches. The award has also inspired me to continue researching and developing new articles for further congresses and publications.
IFSCC: What are your particular areas of interest in cosmetic science?
JOHN: Currently, I work for Belcorp, a leading cosmetic company in Latin America, as Senior Exploration Scientist. Almost all my professional experience has been related to skin care, sun care and, more recently, personal care. I would like to continue to learn about these topics; these are the areas I’m interested in when I attend fairs and congresses.
The application of neuroscience in skin care, personal care, fragrance and make-up also has my immediate interest because there is much to be done in these categories.
Another topic of particular interest to me is active ingredients developed from natural sources. Colombia is biologically mega diverse and after the peace agreement there are interesting projections for the country in the development of cosmetic actives. In Colombia hundreds of natural raw materials are just waiting to be discovered and there are many botanical species and regions that have not yet been studied for cosmetic purposes.
IFSCC: Who has been the most influential individual in your career and why?
JOHN: Definitely Jairo Calle, a great professor and friend with whom I had a natural actives research group. This group had very interesting achievements such as laurel wax development, which had not previously been studied for cosmetic use; we won the Maison G de Navarre Award in 2004 for the work we published with the IFSCC on this. Sadly, Jairo died a couple of years ago, but I still remember him with appreciation because it was from him that I learnt the passion for research, while he also opened my eyes to the potential for Colombian biodiversity in cosmetics.
IFSCC: How important do you consider the role of the IFSCC in the cosmetics industry?
JOHN: The Federation plays a very important role. It is a source that spreads scientific knowledge through congresses and journals, disseminating that knowledge and state of the art technologies. Additionally, it unites the cosmetics industry, promoting professional and scientific development in different countries. Attending IFSCC Congresses/Conferences is very important because the participants are kept up to date on the latest trends and advances in cosmetic science, which will help in future successful product launches that will improve people’s lives.
IFSCC: How well do you think the IFSCC and its role are understood in the industry?
JOHN: I think that there is an opportunity to improve this aspect. While major companies from around the world do give conferences and show their first findings at congresses, there are small and medium sized companies that do not have a presence at the IFSCC. As a consequence they are missing the opportunity to find out what benefits they could be getting by interacting with the Federation (eg promotion of their findings and research conclusions). I think that the IFSCC should consider the challenge of getting more mid-size companies and universities to participate in its activities, such as the IFSCC Magazine and world Congresses and Conferences.
IFSCC: Will you be at the IFSCC Conference in Seoul this year?
JOHN: Yes! It will be a pleasure to participate and visit this wonderful country. Korea is a trends generator in cosmetics and beauty and I think this will big a great opportunity to find inspiration.
The entry deadline for the next Henry Maso Award is 1 June 2017 so you need to move fast. Information & entry form
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