DIY Cream

Hello there,
I would like to know whether stearic acid can be generally used as an emulsifier in making creams.
Thanks a lot.

Comments

  • No. Stearic acid is not an emulsifier.
  • No. Stearic acid is not an emulsifier.
    Thank you for your response.
    So strange! I came across a couple of ingredient sellers that introduce stearic acid as an emulsifier! See the picture below.
  • @mehrzadkia, not surprised. The same supplier lists tocopherol as preservative. As Perry said it can be an emulsifier in a product like shaving cream where you neutralise it. I assume you are looking for an emulsifier for a lotion? Please let me know what you are making. I know this website. It’s naturallythinking. They offer good quality ingredients but in some cases contraversial information. I couldn’t get actual surfactant concentration of SLES they sell for two weeks. I order a lot from them and know what they have, so can advice what fits your product.
  • Perry said:
    Thank you Dr. Perry for your response.
    They are a group of beginners trying to make something like cream or lotion in the lab. So, they are going to keep it very simple:
    Oil phase: olive oil, sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, cocoa butter
    Aqueous phase: water and hydrosol, or aloe vera gel.

    What kind of emulsifier would do the trick? Is stearic acid an option here?

  • This one https://www.naturallythinking.com/glyceryl-stearate-peg-100.html plus 

    https://www.naturallythinking.com/glyceryl-oleate.html

    You need both, since you are using different oils and need a high and a low HLB emulsifier. If you don’t know how to calculate HLB google it before writing your formula.

    You also need something to thicken your lotion. Options are: cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, stearic acid (but it gives draggy feel, I personally don’t like it), and xangtham gum. Get glyceryl oleate and xangtham from naturallythinking, everything else is cheaper on Amazon.uk (you are ordering from naturallythinking, so I am assuming you are in the uk)

  • edited December 5
    Don’t forget preservative and tocopherol. Natthinking has both in section preservatives. And glycerin. 
  • Don’t forget preservative and tocopherol. Natthinking has both in section preservatives. And glycerin. 
    Thank you for your detailed response. This is very thoughtful of you.
    Actually, the students are trying to make a moisturizing cream. Something with around 55% of aqueous phase (glycerin 2%+deionized water 43%+aloe vera gel 10%) and 33% of oil phase (5% castor oil+13% avocado oil+7% olive oil+8% cacao butter).
    Emulsifier: 9%
    Additives including herbal extract, preservative, antioxidant, essential oil: 3%

    For emulsifier, what about this combination?
    Beeswax 7.8%+0.2% Borax & Lecithin 1%

    Thank you.
  • For emulsifier, what about this combination?
    Beeswax 7.8%+0.2% Borax & Lecithin 1%
    NO! It's out of the dark ages. Use something modern.
    Design of anti-aging creams, gels, and serums; shampoos; and therapeutic cosmetics. In-house label and box design capability.
  • Belassi said:
    For emulsifier, what about this combination?
    Beeswax 7.8%+0.2% Borax & Lecithin 1%
    NO! It's out of the dark ages. Use something modern.
    You are right. It's an old-fashioned option! But I just trying to show students what an emulsion is and how it works. I'm trying to keep it as simple as possible.
    Thank you for your point.
  • I listed two very good emulsifiers above. Beeswax isn’t an emulsifier. If you want to make it cheap to show students how to make a cream get emulsifiying wax with cetearyl alcohol and PEG-20 stearate for 6 pounds from Amazon. 
  • Perry said:
    Doesn't neutralized stearic acid dry skin if left on, since it's a fatty acid soap?
  • @Gunther - That depends on what else is in your formula.

  • I listed two very good emulsifiers above. Beeswax isn’t an emulsifier. If you want to make it cheap to show students how to make a cream get emulsifiying wax with cetearyl alcohol and PEG-20 stearate for 6 pounds from Amazon. 

    The combination of Beeswax+Borax, not beeswax alone, is effective in emulsifying. In this case, I am going to try the two options you suggested.
    I really appreciate your responses. Very helpful.

    Sorry I am bothering you with too many questions :(
    Regarding HLB value, after calculating the required HLB of the oil phase, which option do you recommend?
    1- Choosing emulsifier(s) with HLB value close to this calculation

    2- Choosing 2 or more emulsifiers which cover two ranges, below and above of this value.
  • B Squalane 2.00% 12 12% 1.42
    B Caprylic/Capric Triglycerides 1.00% 11 6% 0.65
    B Butyrospermum parkii butter 3.00% 8 18% 1.42
    B Simmondsia Chinesis Seed Oil 2.00% 6 12% 0.71
    B Dimethicone fluid 3.00% 5 18% 0.89
    B Cetyl Alcohol 3.00% 15.5 18% 2.76
    B Cetearyl Alcohol 2.00% 15.5 12% 1.84
    B Tocopheryl Acetate 0.75% 6 4% 0.27
    B Tocopherol 0.10% 6 1% 0.04
          16.85% 10.01
    B Sorbitan Oleate 1.00% 4.5 20% 0.9
    B Glyceryl Stearate/PEG-100 Stearate 4.00% 11.2 80% 8.96
          9.86
    10.01 in this example is HLB of the oil phase, and 9.86 is HLB of emulsifiers.
  • edited December 6
    Loud and clear, I got the point.
    Thank you.
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