The origin of our Cellcosmet and Cellmen ranges is the beginning of a story, rich in scientific and human endeavour. Switzerland’s unrivalled excellence in technology, quality and precision coupled with the passion of Cellap’s founders is at the heart of the international renown our beauty lines enjoy in the world of skin care.
The birth of Swiss cellular cosmetics
Inspired by cellular therapy, cellular cosmetics came into existence in Switzerland in the 1980s. It was inspired by the medical application developed in 1931 by the founder of cellular therapy, Swiss Professor Paul Niehans. However, it would prove to be a long scientific journey before this revitalising technique could be successfully applied to the world of cosmetics.
Behind this evolution lies one man, Dr Alfred Pfister (1910-1990), Swiss doctor and former student of Professor Paul Niehans.
A true visionary with a passion for cellular science in its medical application, he dedicated a large part of his life to researching scientific techniques that would overcome the pitfalls previously encountered in procedures used in traditional cellular revitalisation treatments. Until then, whether they were freeze-dried (lyophilised) or frozen, cells continued to lose efficacy. In response to this problem, Dr Alfred Pfister came up with a new and effective method of stabilisation.
In 1955, he developed a conservation method that slowed down the deterioration process of cells. It was coined the CellVital Method. Thanks to this discovery, cells could be efficiently preserved and continue to “breathe“,while maintaining all their vital force.
Tests carried out at the Battelle de Genève Centre for Research by Professor Warburg, Nobel Prize for Medicine, also served to confirm the effectiveness of this method.
Having made this major leap forward, it would now be possible to control cells after removal. Dr. Pfister used this method for a number of years in the medical setting of his revitalisation clinic. It was then his son, Roland C. Pfister, who took up the reins of the clinic (1977-1985) situated on the shores of Lake Geneva, Switzerland.
“And what can you do for skin?“
It was this very simple question posed by a patient while staying in his revitalisation clinic that gave rise to Roland C. Pfister’s conviction that a form of cellular science could be successfully applied to cosmetics.
The principle of revitalisation is to “stimulate and revitalise a devitalised, prematurely aged or stressed organ with young cells taken from a similar organ to the one being treated“.
Since the skin is a living organ, it seemed obvious that a cosmetic application based on cellular science should be possible.
Driven by the same passion as his father for cellular science, Roland C. Pfister drew inspiration from discoveries that, until then, had been restricted to the medical sphere. He decided to safely and responsibly transfer these advances to the world of cellular cosmetology.
It was on this basis that in 1978 he created and made available to patients staying at his clinic a cellular beauty treatment.
Its success was immediate. His patients’ enthusiasm was such that they quickly expressed a desire to continue the treatment beyond their stay in the clinic. In response to this, Roland C. Pfister had to come up with a cosmetic treatment that would hold the cells in an ointment form that could be used outside of a medical setting. In overcoming this hurdle he opened the doors to cellular cosmetics.
This era was also marked by a quest to find cosmetic manufacturers able to take on the production of cellular cosmetics. However, the formulations envisaged by Roland C. Pfister were of such a technical nature that none of the manufacturers felt up to the job. The specifications were that the cells must conserve their specific biological features as well as their activity over a prolonged period of time.
The manufacturers were quick to suggest he use the freeze-dried cells they were already producing for other skin care brands. However, this was of no interest to Roland C. Pfister for whom the presence of cell vitality in the creams was an absolute must.
But determined not to give up on his project and convinced of the possibility of creating cosmetics based on cellular science, Roland C. Pfister gathered around him leading experts in biology and medicine. He then acquired his first 20kg capacity homogeniser machine and, in collaboration with a galenic technician, began work on developing the ingredients that would be used in his future Swiss cellular cosmetic lines, Cellcosmet and Cellmen.
Cellap Laboratoire S.A.
The New Generation of Swiss Cellular Cosmetics
In 1982, Roland C. Pfister created Cellap Laboratoire S.A. The company would devote itself exclusively to researching and developing cosmetic products.
And just two years later, in August 1984 they finally came
up with a definitive formulation that could be used in cosmetic treatments. Initially
these treatments were only available to patients at the revitalisation clinic,
still managed at the time by Roland C. Pfister.
But with the experimental stage at a close and given the
products’ immediate success, it seemed only logical to make these unique skin
care treatments internationally available.
The decision was finally taken in 1985 when Roland C. Pfister gave up directorship of the revitalisation clinic in order to fully devote himself to the launch of this new generation of Swiss cellular cosmetics.
Helped and supported by his wife, Edith Pfister, it took a further two years to finalise the concept of Cellcosmet cosmetics for women and Cellmen cosmetics for men as, before they could properly launch these cellular skin care lines onto the international market, a mountain of work awaited them.
This included producing packaging, documentation and instruction manuals, reformulating the cellular stabilisation methods to adapt them to their new use in dermocosmetics, and a host of other challenges to ensure the selective distribution of the Cellcosmet and Cellmen ranges in both Switzerland and abroad.In 1986, Cellap Laboratoire S.A. took up premises in Mont-sur-Lausanne, Switzerland where it is home to its own production and processing laboratory, a technologically pioneering R&D department and a team of leading cosmetologists and biologists.
Cellap Laboratoire completed the development of the CellControlTM method in 1987
This was a real breakthrough in the world of cosmetics and a key moment in the history of cellular cosmetics. It also heralded the start of an international success story.
The CellControlTM method means that cellular material can be kept in its active state for months at a time, thanks to the use of a stabilising liquid especially developed by scientists at Cellap Laboratoire.
This provides access to active stabilised bio-integral cells that not only maintain their biological integrity but also their extraordinary vital energy. These cells can then be incorporated into the formulation of the Cellcosmet and Cellmen products that, in turn, are selectively distributed throughout the world by Cellap Laboratoire.
To this day, the CellControlTM method that Cellap Laboratoire applies to its cellular products remains the most effective and best adapted treatment for stimulating skin revitalisation.
The launch of Cellcosmet and Cellmen
- Cellmen for men
With this launch, Cellap Laboratoire clearly distinguished itself from other cosmetic ranges by offering, for the first time in cosmetology, cellular skin care lines that respected:
Indeed, the cellular line for women, Cellcosmet takes into account the varying needs of the skin and how these change depending on its physiological age. This is why the concentration of cellular extracts in the various products varies from one cosmeceutical to another.
Developed alongside the women's Cellcosmet line, the Cellmen range for men, has been formulated to perfectly respond to the specific needs of male skin. This cosmetic range has gone on to become one of the most comprehensive male skin care lines on the market today.
Cellcosmet and Cellmen - 100% Swiss Made Cosmetic Ranges
From the onset, Cellap Laboratoire was clear in its desire to emphasise the Swiss origins of its product lines. With the Cellcosmet range packaged in red and white and the Cellmen range in grey and white, the Swiss flag integrated into the company logo and the guarantee of the Swisscos label, these products are a clear reminder to international customers of the Swiss standards and know-how from which they hail.
Moreover, given that the products are developed, manufactured and packaged from start to finish in Switzerland, Cellap Laboratoire can legitimately add the “100% Swiss Made“ label to its Cellcosmet and Cellmen ranges.
The international markets were quick to show an interest in the product ranges. From January 1988, the telex machine crackled with exclusive distribution requests from Europe, Asia and countries as diverse as Japan, the USA and Russia.
The evolution of Cellap Laboratoire had begun.
This evolution took place not only in terms of markets but also in terms of laboratory, collaborator and product structures, as well as the ongoing growth of the company whose major milestones are outlined below.
1988: Alexandre Chappuis, Roland C. Pfister's stepson, joins Cellap Laboratoire S.A.
In line with the rich family heritage, Alexandre Chappuis – Cellap Laboratoire’s current CEO – joined the company with the same passion and desire to innovate that had been passed down to him from previous generations.
1993: phyto products are added to the range of cellular products
In order to respond to the growing needs for relaxation and well-being, Cellap Laboratoire integrated marine and plant components into a number of its products, the latter containing floral extracts as well as plant and essential oils. Phyto bio-complexes are used whenever they seem the best adapted and most efficient solution in terms of the desired outcome.
Cellap Laboratoire has also developed exceptional polyactive treatments by combining within the same formulation (and depending on the desired properties) active stabilised bio-integral cells with phyto bio-complexes. Benefitting from the amplifying synergy that these different active ingredients produce (Cyto + Phyto), these formulas potentiate the results obtained. Even today, Cellap Laboratoire is one of the few laboratories in the world to master both cyto (cellular) and phyto (plant) bio-complex technologies.
1997: stabilised bio-integral cells are obtained using biotechnology - a new feat in the world of cellular cosmetics
As innovators in dermocosmetics, Cellap Laboratoire achieved yet another first in 1997. They began using biotechnology to obtain active stabilised bio-integral cells. This revolutionary method enables cells to be recovered in large numbers from an initial cell. From this point on it would no longer be necessary to retrieve samples for each application. As a result, the products could be made available on a wider scale while still being able to ensure maximum effectiveness and safety.
1998: Cellap Laboratoire is converted into a holding company
The headquarters of Cellap Laboratoire Holdings are located in Mont-sur-Lausanne, Switzerland on the site already housing Cellap's laboratories.
2005: Cellap Laboratoire is ISO 9001:2000 certified and recently ISO 9001:2008 certified
2009: the launch of 7 new products from the Cellmen men's range
These new products join the existing products in the Cellmen men’s range. The high-tech products that make up this men's range offer a targeted response to the modern man who takes care of his looks and is concerned about his appearance. Today, Cellmen is still the only range of cellular and phyto cosmeceuticals to respect the hormonal identity of male skin.
2010: Cellap Laboratoire acquires its production site in Mont-sur-Lausanne, Switzerland
Cellap Laboratoire’s ultra-modern and ultra-sophisticated premises extend over more than 3,000m2. These new premises are a logical step in Cellap Laboratoire's plan to increase its company capacity in terms of production and distribution both nationally and internationally.
2011: the launch of the exclusive and highly confidential CellEctive range with its ultra-smoothing and plumping cellular serum - CellLift Serum
Made from highly concentrated, high-performance ingredients, this range is the fruit of rigorous, cutting-edge scientific research to guarantee exceptional results.
This delicate and luxurious range came into being in 2011 with the launch of its first product, CellLift Serum, an anti-ageing, ultra-smoothing cellular serum with immediate and visible results. It has enjoyed overwhelming success in the markets covered by Cellap Laboratoire.
Then and now...
...with the opening up of high-potential markets, the consolidation of commercial relationships, the introduction of new concepts and the development of new products, Cellap Laboratoire S.A. is undeniably writing and making its mark on the history of cellular cosmetics.