Background: Horse oil (HO) has skin barrier restoration and skin-moisturizing effects. Although cream formulations have been used widely and safely, their limited penetration through the stratum corneum is a major obstacle to maximizing the cosmetic efficacy of HO. Therefore, we aimed to encapsulate HO in a cosmetic dissolving microneedle (DMN) for efficient transdermal delivery. Methods: To overcome these limitations of skin permeation, HO-loaded DMN (HO-DMN) patches were developed and evaluated for their efficacy and safety using in vitro and clinical studies. Results: Despite the lipophilic nature of HO, the HO-DMN patches had a sharp shape and uniform array, with an average length and tip diameter of 388.36 ± 16.73 and 38.54 ± 5.29 μm, respectively. The mechanical strength of the HO-DMN patches was sufficient (fracture force of 0.29 ± 0.01 N), and they could successfully penetrate pig skin. During the 4-week clinical evaluation, HO-DMN patches caused significant improvements in skin and dermal density, skin elasticity, and moisturization. Additionally, a brief safety assessment showed that the HO-DMN patches induced negligible adverse events. Conclusion: The HO-DMNs are efficient, safe, and convenient for wide use in cosmetic applications for skin barrier restoration and moisturization.
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