Emollient foam in topical drug delivery

Dov Tamarkin, Doron Friedman, Avner Shemer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Foams offer an innovative and more convenient means of topical drug delivery. The successful introduction of hydroalcoholic foams paved the way for the development of a new generation of foam products that provide skin barrier build-up and hydration. Such foams, designated as emollient foams consist of oil-in-water or water-in-oil emulsions with necessary excipients, such as non-ionic surfactants, gelling agents and foam adjuvants. Emollient foams can carry a broad variety of topical drugs, including water-soluble, oil-soluble and suspended active agents. This paper reviews emollient foam compositions and their physicochemical properties. It further accounts for the usability and functional advantages of emollient foam as a vehicle of topical drugs, including: i) improved usability, which affects treatment, compliance and, consequently, improves therapeutic results; ii) safety; iii) controllable drug delivery; iv) skin barrier build-up and hydration; and v) enhanced clinical efficacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)799-807
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Opinion on Drug Delivery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Emollient foam
  • Skin penetration
  • Topical therapy
  • Usability


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