Organic ingredients and their functions (part B)

 

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EMULSIFIERS/ THICKENERS

In cosmetics, an emulsifiers are those  ingredients that helps keep mixtures (such as oil and water) from separating .Emulsifiers are widely used throughout the cosmetics industry and are the heroes of many cosmetics formulas that blend and help to keep ingredients together.

thickening agent or thickener is a substance which can increase the viscosity of a liquid without substantially changing its other properties.Thickeners may also improve the suspension of other ingredients or emulsions which increases the stability of the product.

Some of them are as follows;

Emulsifying Wax

Beeswax

Stearic Acid

Cetyl Alcohol

Borax

BEESWAX

Beeswax-m-1543331718-1561463714203

The best known animal wax is beeswax used in constructing the honeycombs of honeybees, but other insects secrete waxes. A major component of the beeswax is myricyl palmitate which is an ester of triacontanol and palmitic acid. Its melting point is 62-65 °C. Spermaceti occurs in large amounts in the head oil of the sperm whale. One of its main constituents is cetyl palmitate, another ester of a fatty acid and a fatty alcohol. Lanolin is a wax obtained from wool, consisting of esters of sterols

Beeswax (cera alba) is a natural wax produced by honey bees of the genus Apis. The wax is formed into scales by eight wax-producing glands in the abdominal segments of worker bees, which discard it in or at the hive. The hive workers collect and use it to form cells for honey storage and larval and pupal protection within the beehive. Chemically, beeswax consists mainly of esters of fatty acids and various long-chain alcohols.

How it is processed

When beekeepers extract the honey, they cut off the wax caps from each honeycomb cell with an uncapping knife or machine. Its color varies from nearly white to brownish, but most often a shade of yellow, depending on purity, the region, and the type of flowers gathered by the bees. Wax from the brood comb of the honey bee hive tends to be darker than wax from the honeycomb. Impurities accumulate more quickly in the brood comb. Due to the impurities, the wax must be rendered before further use. The leftovers are called slum gum.

The wax may be clarified further by heating in water. As with petroleum waxes, it may be softened by dilution with mineral oil or vegetable oil to make it more workable at room temperature.

Purified and bleached beeswax is used in the production of food, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals.

The three main types of beeswax products are yellow, white, and beeswax absolute.Yellow beeswax is the crude product obtained from the honeycomb, white beeswax is bleached or filtered yellow beeswax, and beeswax absolute is yellow beeswax treated with alcohol

Uses in skin care

Use of beeswax in skin care and cosmetics has been increasing. A German study found beeswax to be superior to similar barrier creams (usually mineral oil-based creams such as petroleum jelly), when used according to its protocol. Beeswax is used in lip balm, lip gloss, hand creams, salves, and moisturizers; and in cosmetics such as eye shadow, blush, and eye liner. Beeswax is also an important ingredient in mustache wax and hair pomades, which make hair look sleek and shiny.

Emulsifying Wax

Emulsifying_wax-product

Emulsifying wax is a cosmetic emulsifying ingredient. The ingredient name is often followed by the initials NF, indicating that it conforms to the specifications of the National Formulary.

Emulsifying wax is created when a wax material (either a vegetable wax of some kind or a petroleum-based wax) is treated with a detergent (typically sodium dodecyl sulfate or polysorbates) to cause it to make oil and water bind together into a smooth emulsion. It is a white waxy solid with a low fatty alcohol odor.

In a cosmetic product, if the emulsifying wax used meets the standards for the National Formulary, it may be listed in the ingredient declaration by the term “emulsifying wax NF”.  Otherwise, the emulsifier is considered a blended ingredient and the individual components must be listed individually in the ingredient declaration, placed appropriately in descending order of predominance in the whole.

Emulsifying wax is used in more modern times as a medium for making skin care products. It can blend oil and water in facial creams, body lotions, moisturizers and other skin care products. The ability of emulsifying wax to blend oil and water into a fine consistency is highly valued in the cosmetic industry as well.

The Importance of emulsifying wax

Because emulsifying wax is essentially the glue that holds all those important cleansing oils together with water, your facial moisturizer won’t last too long without it. If left too long on the shelf, or if you use it for a longer period than the manufacturer expected, the oils and water will separate. Chances are, one day you’ll tip the bottle over your hand and get a stream of oil before a glop of water and other ingredients fall out.

With emulsifying wax, the oils and the water will stay blended together. You won’t have to worry about applying as much of it as possible or using it as frequently as possible within a certain time period.

Facial moisturizers use emulsifying wax to regulate their thickness and creaminess. Some facial moisturizers are runnier than others, some are thicker than others, and it does come down to your preference. However, a creamy moisturizer that holds when you massage it into your skin has more chance of being absorbed. So when you double-check your facial moisturizer ingredients, make sure emulsifying wax is included.

Stearic acid

acid is a saturated fatty acid with an 18-carbon chain and has the IUPAC name octadecanoic acid. It is a waxy solid and its chemical formula is C17H35CO2H. Its name comes from the Greek word στέαρ “stéar”, which means tallow. The salts and esters of stearic acid are called stearates. As its ester, stearic acid is one of the most common saturated fatty acids found in nature following palmitic acid. The triglyceride derived from three molecules of stearic acid is called stearin.

Stearic acid is obtained from fats and oils by the saponification of the triglycerides using hot water (about 100 °C). The resulting mixture is then distilled.

Commercial stearic acid is often a mixture of stearic and palmitic acids, although purified stearic acid is available.

Uses in Soaps, cosmetics, detergents.

Stearic acid is mainly used in the production of detergents, soaps, and cosmetics such as shampoos and shaving cream products. Soaps are not made directly from stearic acid, but indirectly by saponification of triglycerides consisting of stearic acid esters. Esters of stearic acid with ethylene glycol, glycol stearate, and glycol distearate are used to produce a pearly effect in shampoos, soaps, and other cosmetic products.

They are added to the product in molten form and allowed to crystallize under controlled conditions. Detergents are obtained from amides and quaternary alkylammonium derivatives of stearic acid.

Cetyl alcohol

Cetyl alcohol, also known as hexadecan-1-ol and palmityl alcohol, is a fatty alcohol with the formula CH3(CH2)15OH. At room temperature, cetyl alcohol takes the form of a waxy white solid or flakes. The name cetyl derives from the whale oil (Latin: cetus) from which it was first isolated.

The first was obtained by heating spermaceti, a waxy substance obtained from sperm whale oil, with caustic potash (potassium hydroxide). Flakes of cetyl alcohol was left behind on cooling.  Modern production is based around the reduction of palmitic acid, which is obtained from palm oil.

Cetyl alcohol is used in the cosmetic industry as an opacifier in shampoos, or as an emollient, emulsifier or thickening agent in the manufacture of skin creams and lotions.

When Cetyl Alcohol is added to natural cosmetic preparations, it functions as an agent that helps homogenize components that naturally separate (emulsifier), as a soothing lubricant (emollient), as a thickener, as an opacifier, and as a carrier for other ingredients in a formula. These stabilizing properties ensure that the oils and water remain combined, thus promoting an ideal, smooth texture that ultimately gives the final product an easy glide on the skin or hair.

Borax

Borax is a component of many detergents, cosmetics, and enamel glazes. It is used to make buffer solutions in biochemistry, as a fire retardant, as an anti-fungal compound, in the manufacture of fiberglass, as a flux in metallurgy, neutron-capture shields for radioactive sources, a texturing agent in cooking, as a precursor for other boron compounds, and along with its inverse, boric acid, is useful as an insecticide.

Borax, also known as sodium borate, sodium tetraborate, or disodium tetraborate, is an important boron compound, a mineral, and a salt of boric acid. Powdered borax is white, consisting of soft colorless crystals that dissolve in water. A number of closely related minerals or chemical compounds that differ in their crystal water content are referred to as borax, but the word is usually used to refer to the octahydrate. Commercially sold borax is partially dehydrated

Borax occurs naturally in evaporite deposits produced by the repeated evaporation of seasonal lakes. The most commercially important deposits are found in: Turkey; Boron, California; and Searle’s Lake, California. Also, borax has been found at many other locations in the Southwestern United States, the Atacama Desert in Chile, newly discovered deposits in Bolivia, and in Tibet and Romania. Borax can also be produced synthetically from other boron compounds.

Naturally occurring borax (known by the trade name Rasorite–46 in the United States and many other countries) is refined by a process of re crystallization.

Borax is used in various household laundry and cleaning products. Its ability to soften water and suspend soap particles makes it a popular ingredient for products like detergents, shampoos, shower gels and cleaning products. Thanks to its high alkalinity, it is also an effective odor neutralizer. When it is combined with citric acid, borax produces a fuzziness that makes it a popular ingredient in cleansing products like bath bombs.

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