Determination of hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol by liquid chromatography for the quality control of cosmetic products based on olive extracts

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An analytical method for the simultaneous determination of hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol in different types of olive extract raw materials and cosmetic cream samples has been developed. The determination was performed by liquid chromatography with UV spectrophotometric detection. Different chromatographic parameters, such as mobile phase pH and composition, oven temperature and different sample preparation variables were studied. The best chromatographic separation was obtained under the following conditions: C18 column set at 35 °C and isocratic elution of a mixture ethanol: 1% acetic acid solution at pH 5 (5:95, v/v) as mobile phase pumped at 1 mL min−1. The detection wavelength was set at 280 nm and the total run time required for the chromatographic analysis was 10 min, except for cosmetic cream samples where 20 min runtime was required (including a cleaning step). The method was satisfactorily applied to 23 samples including solid, water-soluble and fat-soluble olive extracts and cosmetic cream samples containing hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol. Good recoveries (95–107%) and repeatability (1.1–3.6%) were obtained, besides of limits of detection values below the μg mL−1 level. These good analytical features, as well as its environmentally-friendly characteristics, make the presented method suitable to carry out both the control of the whole manufacture process of raw materials containing the target analytes and the quality control of the finished cosmetic products.

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