Niacinamide 10% in formula

Hello! I am getting a niacinamide serum formulated and I want 10% niacinamide in it while manufacturer says "We don't suggest to add niacinamide to 10% because what we use for raw material is pure and high-concentrated,  it need to dilute before adding into serum. So 5% is the most."
How true is that?

Moreover, what's best alternative to zinc PCA 1%?

Thank you!
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Comments

  • I haven't seen any in-vivo efficacy data to prove that 10% would be more beneficial than 5%. Remember - The more active, the bigger risk for irritation. Also the cost of the product goes up.
    The Ordinary has 10% B3, but again, why? I think 5% should be the top. 
    Second remember - More does not need better. Some actives work at super low concentrations. 

    Best alternative to Zinc PCA? ... Sodium PCA :D Apparently there is synergistic effect when used with Sodium Hyaluronate/Hyaluronic acid.
  • GraillotionGraillotion Member
    edited January 13
    Agree with Paprik, I believe most research has been performed at around the 4% level.  Anything above that might just be for marketing bragging rights...."Look at me....I have more than them....So I must be better!"

    Best alternative for zinc PCA?....  Assuming this is a cost issue?  A genius once  whispered to me that answer... blend zinc sulfate (super cheap) with sodium PCA....and what do you have? :) 

  • Best alternative to Zinc PCA? ... Sodium PCA :D Apparently there is synergistic effect when used with Sodium Hyaluronate/Hyaluronic acid.
    Mixing Sodium PCA with HA provides what kind of synergy?  Humectancy? Other?  I am curious.  I use both, but not always in the same formula.
  • Agree with Paprik, I believe most research has been performed at around the 4% level.  Anything above that might just be for marketing bragging rights...."Look at me....I have more than them....So I must be better!"

    Best alternative for zinc PCA?....  Assuming this is a cost issue?  A genius once  whispered to me that answer... blend zinc sulfate (super cheap) with sodium PCA....and what do you have? :) 
    Will you have zinc PCA and sodium sulfate? 

    Does it also need specific temperature, mixing speed other requirements or by just mixing them this reaction happens? 

  • Best alternative to Zinc PCA? ... Sodium PCA :D Apparently there is synergistic effect when used with Sodium Hyaluronate/Hyaluronic acid.
    Mixing Sodium PCA with HA provides what kind of synergy?  Humectancy? Other?  I am curious.  I use both, but not always in the same formula.
    Yeah, I guess in humectancy. This is from my book from IPCS

    Sodium PCA - Highest performing of all humectants; high end cosmeceutical products (expensive); synergistic effect with sodium hyaluronate. 

    I will try to google it also, just to check it out. Might be interesting aye? 
  • Thanks a lot everyone for your replies. This discussion is super helpful for me. Your help is greatly appreciated. :)
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    @Paprik - what convinces you that Sodium PCA is superior to glycerine as a humectant?
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    edited January 14
    Abdullah said:
    Best alternative for zinc PCA?....  Assuming this is a cost issue?  A genius once  whispered to me that answer... blend zinc sulfate (super cheap) with sodium PCA....and what do you have? :) 
    Will you have zinc PCA and sodium sulfate? 

    Does it also need specific temperature, mixing speed other requirements or by just mixing them this reaction happens? 
    No, you will have Zn, Na, Sulfate and PCA ions dissociated in the aqueous phase. They're all water soluble so you just add to water and stir. On your label you will still need to list the ingredients as Sodium PCA and Zinc Sulfate ... you could not claim ZnPCA as an ingredient
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals & Clean Beauty arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program/Clean At Sephora/Credo Clean guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details www.desertinbloomcosmeticslab.com
  • Abdullah said:
    Best alternative for zinc PCA?....  Assuming this is a cost issue?  A genius once  whispered to me that answer... blend zinc sulfate (super cheap) with sodium PCA....and what do you have? :) 
    Will you have zinc PCA and sodium sulfate? 

    Does it also need specific temperature, mixing speed other requirements or by just mixing them this reaction happens? 
    No, you will have Zn, Na, Sulfate and PCA ions dissociated in the aqueous phase. They're all water soluble so you just add to water and stir. On your label you will still need to list the ingredients as Sodium PCA and Zinc Sulfate ... you could not claim ZnPCA as an ingredient
    So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    Abdullah said:
    No, you will have Zn, Na, Sulfate and PCA ions dissociated in the aqueous phase. They're all water soluble so you just add to water and stir. On your label you will still need to list the ingredients as Sodium PCA and Zinc Sulfate ... you could not claim ZnPCA as an ingredient
    So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?

    Yes, both Zn PCA and Na PCA are dissociated in solution.  The approach described above gives you the same dissociated ions, but if it's a 50/50 mixture of the two salts, you will have half as much PCA ... so, why not just add half as much ZnPCA and you have one less ingredient to purchase.

    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals & Clean Beauty arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program/Clean At Sephora/Credo Clean guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details www.desertinbloomcosmeticslab.com
  • Perry said:
    @Paprik - what convinces you that Sodium PCA is superior to glycerine as a humectant?
    Frankly, nothing. :D It's just from my IPCS study texts. I kind of believe that glycerin is the best humectant. Especially compering the prices. 
    But also believe Na PCA is great. And not feeling tacky when used in higher percentages. 
  • Abdullah said:
    No, you will have Zn, Na, Sulfate and PCA ions dissociated in the aqueous phase. They're all water soluble so you just add to water and stir. On your label you will still need to list the ingredients as Sodium PCA and Zinc Sulfate ... you could not claim ZnPCA as an ingredient
    So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?

    Yes, both Zn PCA and Na PCA are dissociated in solution.  The approach described above gives you the same dissociated ions, but if it's a 50/50 mixture of the two salts, you will have half as much PCA ... so, why not just add half as much ZnPCA and you have one less ingredient to purchase.

    Thanks
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals & Clean Beauty arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program/Clean At Sephora/Credo Clean guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details www.desertinbloomcosmeticslab.com
  • @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Cost and availability to the small-time operator. :( 

  • AbdullahAbdullah Member
    edited January 17
    @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Some more questions that came to me.

    1. An expert here told me that if we combine same ratio of fatty acids+glycerin as a plant oil like coconut oil, it will not function as coconut oil. Also if you apply coconut oil to skin, the glycerin in it will not function as glycerin although it has ~10% glycerin. So how these ions when separated function the same as it was combined? 

    2. Is it the zinc PCA or zinc sulfate form that is doing the function for which they are being used or just the zinc part?

    3. As i don't have chemistry background, can you tell me why mixing zinc sulfate with sodium PCA turns to Zn, Na, Sulfate and PCA ions dissociated in the aqueous phase and not stay there original form? 
  • @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Cost and availability to the small-time operator. :( 

    What about zinc gluconate?
  • Thanks everyone for your response :) 
  • I have one more question, please answer. My serum has a number of botanical extracts which are antioxidants like olive leaf extract, licorice extract, rosemary extract etc. Is it essential to use sunblock with this also as it's mandatory with vitamin C, retinol and acids? Thanks!
  • @Abdullah The active part of Zn-PCA is PCA. PCA itself (as most organic acids) is not as soluble in water as it's salt; that's why it's more common to have it as Na-PCA. As @MarkBroussard mentioned, once dissolved in water, salts such as Na-PCA, Zn-PCA or ZnSO4 will completely dissociate in their ions (depending on their solubility constants), since hydration is more thermodinamically favored than keeping the ionic structure, so then you'll have each single ion in the solution. Again, what matters is to have the PCA part present, since that's the one with humecting properties. 

    @Rimshah most extracts have very little antioxidant capacity (with few exceptions)...keep in mind that they have usually metal (ions) traces, which act as catalyst of oxidative properties, so you'd need a more robust antioxidant to protect them.  
  • ketchito said:
    @Abdullah The active part of Zn-PCA is PCA. PCA itself (as most organic acids) is not as soluble in water as it's salt; that's why it's more common to have it as Na-PCA. As @MarkBroussard mentioned, once dissolved in water, salts such as Na-PCA, Zn-PCA or ZnSO4 will completely dissociate in their ions (depending on their solubility constants), since hydration is more thermodinamically favored than keeping the ionic structure, so then you'll have each single ion in the solution. Again, what matters is to have the PCA part present, since that's the one with humecting properties. 

    @Rimshah most extracts have very little antioxidant capacity (with few exceptions)...keep in mind that they have usually metal (ions) traces, which act as catalyst of oxidative properties, so you'd need a more robust antioxidant to protect them.  
    I thought the active part of zinc PCA is zinc. 

    https://www.sephora.com/product/the-ordinary-deciem-niacinamide-10-zinc-1-P427417
  • Abdullah said:
    @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Cost and availability to the small-time operator. :( 

    What about zinc gluconate?
    When I was in the zinc selection process...I sent my respected advisor a list of candidates.  Below is his response, I hope you find this helpful (keep in mind....the topic of discussion...is DEODORANT!).  So, his comments might be different in a general skincare context.

    Yea, the (Sulfate) monohydrate is like 'wet' zinc sulfate. I'd go with that one.
    If you want zinc in its free form (which is the one active against microbes), zinc sulfate is the way to go. Also, it's an INCI ingredient (not sure whether or not the other forms are).
    Zinc oxide is a different horse, don't go with that one.
    Zinc gluconate and citrate are weakly chelated... they may be okay for oral supplementation but come with a lower overall zinc content (large chelate molecules) and poor skin permeation. From what I can see, no benefit in cosmetics.
    Zinc aspartate and glycinate are amino acid complexes, similar to zinc PCA. However, many commercial amino acid complexes are actually a blend of the amino acid with sulfate salts... depends on the supplier. Bulk supplements isn't always too straightforward with the exact composition... If you want zinc in your skin instead of on your skin, zinc glycinate would be a good choice and has a higher % of zinc than other organic salts/complexes (zinc aspartate isn't soluble, forget that one). Zinc picolinate is close to zinc PCA and probably the most stable complex (also most pH tolerant) though I'm not sure what higher amounts of picolinic acid would do to skin (picolinates are great for gastrointestinal absorption and likely show good skin penetration too).
    Zinc orotate... too poor solubility, too low amount of overall zinc, and too pricey. I really don't see any advantage of that one.
    Hence, on the skin: zinc sulfate (quite heavily counts as electrolyte), in the skin: zinc glycinate (unless zinc picolinate is an INCI ingredient, both don't count as electrolytes).


  • In all fairness to the advisor...he was limited by a subset of choices that I provided.  His first choice (but not part of the subset) was Zinc PCA.

    Aloha.

  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    If you are looking for a deodorizer ... Zinc Peroxide is what you are best off using
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals & Clean Beauty arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program/Clean At Sephora/Credo Clean guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details www.desertinbloomcosmeticslab.com
  • Abdullah said:
    ketchito said:
    @Abdullah The active part of Zn-PCA is PCA. PCA itself (as most organic acids) is not as soluble in water as it's salt; that's why it's more common to have it as Na-PCA. As @MarkBroussard mentioned, once dissolved in water, salts such as Na-PCA, Zn-PCA or ZnSO4 will completely dissociate in their ions (depending on their solubility constants), since hydration is more thermodinamically favored than keeping the ionic structure, so then you'll have each single ion in the solution. Again, what matters is to have the PCA part present, since that's the one with humecting properties. 

    @Rimshah most extracts have very little antioxidant capacity (with few exceptions)...keep in mind that they have usually metal (ions) traces, which act as catalyst of oxidative properties, so you'd need a more robust antioxidant to protect them.  
    I thought the active part of zinc PCA is zinc. 

    https://www.sephora.com/product/the-ordinary-deciem-niacinamide-10-zinc-1-P427417
    @Abdullah My bet. I for some reason thought someone mentioned the humectancy, that's when PCA comes to play. If you want a Zn source for your formula due to its antimicrobial properties (not aware of sebum regulation, but for that, aluminium salts are more effective), then cheaper sources are well...cheaper (except ZnO which is a very stable ionic compound). 
  • ketchito said:
    Abdullah said:
    ketchito said:
    @Abdullah The active part of Zn-PCA is PCA. PCA itself (as most organic acids) is not as soluble in water as it's salt; that's why it's more common to have it as Na-PCA. As @MarkBroussard mentioned, once dissolved in water, salts such as Na-PCA, Zn-PCA or ZnSO4 will completely dissociate in their ions (depending on their solubility constants), since hydration is more thermodinamically favored than keeping the ionic structure, so then you'll have each single ion in the solution. Again, what matters is to have the PCA part present, since that's the one with humecting properties. 

    @Rimshah most extracts have very little antioxidant capacity (with few exceptions)...keep in mind that they have usually metal (ions) traces, which act as catalyst of oxidative properties, so you'd need a more robust antioxidant to protect them.  
    I thought the active part of zinc PCA is zinc. 

    https://www.sephora.com/product/the-ordinary-deciem-niacinamide-10-zinc-1-P427417
    @Abdullah My bet. I for some reason thought someone mentioned the humectancy, that's when PCA comes to play. If you want a Zn source for your formula due to its antimicrobial properties (not aware of sebum regulation, but for that, aluminium salts are more effective), then cheaper sources are well...cheaper (except ZnO which is a very stable ionic compound). 
    Thanks 
    How do you compare it to zinc gluconate?
  • Abdullah said:
    @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Cost and availability to the small-time operator. :( 

    What about zinc gluconate?
    When I was in the zinc selection process...I sent my respected advisor a list of candidates.  Below is his response, I hope you find this helpful (keep in mind....the topic of discussion...is DEODORANT!).  So, his comments might be different in a general skincare context.

    Yea, the (Sulfate) monohydrate is like 'wet' zinc sulfate. I'd go with that one.
    If you want zinc in its free form (which is the one active against microbes), zinc sulfate is the way to go. Also, it's an INCI ingredient (not sure whether or not the other forms are).
    Zinc oxide is a different horse, don't go with that one.
    Zinc gluconate and citrate are weakly chelated... they may be okay for oral supplementation but come with a lower overall zinc content (large chelate molecules) and poor skin permeation. From what I can see, no benefit in cosmetics.
    Zinc aspartate and glycinate are amino acid complexes, similar to zinc PCA. However, many commercial amino acid complexes are actually a blend of the amino acid with sulfate salts... depends on the supplier. Bulk supplements isn't always too straightforward with the exact composition... If you want zinc in your skin instead of on your skin, zinc glycinate would be a good choice and has a higher % of zinc than other organic salts/complexes (zinc aspartate isn't soluble, forget that one). Zinc picolinate is close to zinc PCA and probably the most stable complex (also most pH tolerant) though I'm not sure what higher amounts of picolinic acid would do to skin (picolinates are great for gastrointestinal absorption and likely show good skin penetration too).
    Zinc orotate... too poor solubility, too low amount of overall zinc, and too pricey. I really don't see any advantage of that one.
    Hence, on the skin: zinc sulfate (quite heavily counts as electrolyte), in the skin: zinc glycinate (unless zinc picolinate is an INCI ingredient, both don't count as electrolytes).


    Do you mean topical by on skin and oral by in skin?
  • Abdullah said:
    Abdullah said:
    @Abdullah

    Ooops! ... My comment did not post.  To answer your question:

    "So will there be any effect that zinc PCA or sodium PCA has?"

    Let's assume you mix 50/50 Zn Sulfate and Na PCA ... Yes, but why not just use 1/2 the amount of ZnPCA and not have to combine two separate ingredients when you don't get to list ZnPCA on your ingredient list?
    Cost and availability to the small-time operator. :( 

    What about zinc gluconate?
    When I was in the zinc selection process...I sent my respected advisor a list of candidates.  Below is his response, I hope you find this helpful (keep in mind....the topic of discussion...is DEODORANT!).  So, his comments might be different in a general skincare context.

    Yea, the (Sulfate) monohydrate is like 'wet' zinc sulfate. I'd go with that one.
    If you want zinc in its free form (which is the one active against microbes), zinc sulfate is the way to go. Also, it's an INCI ingredient (not sure whether or not the other forms are).
    Zinc oxide is a different horse, don't go with that one.
    Zinc gluconate and citrate are weakly chelated... they may be okay for oral supplementation but come with a lower overall zinc content (large chelate molecules) and poor skin permeation. From what I can see, no benefit in cosmetics.
    Zinc aspartate and glycinate are amino acid complexes, similar to zinc PCA. However, many commercial amino acid complexes are actually a blend of the amino acid with sulfate salts... depends on the supplier. Bulk supplements isn't always too straightforward with the exact composition... If you want zinc in your skin instead of on your skin, zinc glycinate would be a good choice and has a higher % of zinc than other organic salts/complexes (zinc aspartate isn't soluble, forget that one). Zinc picolinate is close to zinc PCA and probably the most stable complex (also most pH tolerant) though I'm not sure what higher amounts of picolinic acid would do to skin (picolinates are great for gastrointestinal absorption and likely show good skin penetration too).
    Zinc orotate... too poor solubility, too low amount of overall zinc, and too pricey. I really don't see any advantage of that one.
    Hence, on the skin: zinc sulfate (quite heavily counts as electrolyte), in the skin: zinc glycinate (unless zinc picolinate is an INCI ingredient, both don't count as electrolytes).


    Do you mean topical by on skin and oral by in skin?
    Oral means...consuming it for a benefit... :) 

    Somethings just aren't meant to be applied... :) 
  • gentle bump for later read. :)
  • @ketchito Thanks for your response. Niacinamide is also an antioxidant, it will protect the botanical extracts right?

    Moreover, zinc PCA and sodium hyaluronate can be used together without compromising the efficiency of zinc PCA? 
  • Perry said:
    @Paprik - what convinces you that Sodium PCA is superior to glycerine as a humectant?

    "The water-binding capacity of the sodium salts of lactic acid and PCA are higher than that of glycerin. Treatment of guinea pig footpad corneum with humectant solutions shows that the water held by corneum decreases in the following order: Sodium PCA>sodium lactate>glycerine>sorbitol"

    Ref: Handbook of Cosmetic Science and Technology edited by Barel, Paye, Maibach



  • grapefruit22grapefruit22 Member
    edited January 24
    Mondonna said:
    Perry said:
    @Paprik - what convinces you that Sodium PCA is superior to glycerine as a humectant?
    "The water-binding capacity of the sodium salts of lactic acid and PCA are higher than that of glycerin. Treatment of guinea pig footpad corneum with humectant solutions shows that the water held by corneum decreases in the following order: Sodium PCA>sodium lactate>glycerine>sorbitol"

    Ref: Handbook of Cosmetic Science and Technology edited by Barel, Paye, Maibach
    This study also confirmed that Sodium Lactate and Sodium PCA are better humectants. 

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/307863658_SKIN_CARE_FORMULATION_INCORPORATING_SODIUM_LACTATES_SODIUM_PCA_AND_LAURYL_PCA_COMPARATIVE_MOISTURISING_EFFICACY_ON_ASIAN_SKIN_SKIN_CARE_FORMULATION_INCORPORATING_SODIUM_LACTATES_SODIUM_PCA_AND_LAURYL_

    From what I remember, glycerin has the lowest molecular weight and the moisturizing effect may persist after washing.
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    @Mondonna - I don't doubt the results you've posted but I guess it is a step away from the claim that "glycerin is the superior humectant".  It's humectancy as measured as a solution on Guinea pig skin. What I'm talking about is using glycerin as a humectant in a skin lotion on human skin.  Even when compared to something like Urea as in this study, the best they could say is Sodium PCA was "equally effective as a similar established product with a different humectant system (urea)."  

    @grapefruit22 - The problem with the study you posted is that it doesn't demonstrate Sodium Lactate and Sodium PCA are better. What is shows is that if you take a formula that includes 3% glycerin and then you add additional Sodium Lactate or Sodium PCA, then you get better scores using a corneometer.  One has to wonder, why didn't they do the additional test where they just increased the level of Glycerin and see how much additional scoring they would have gotten. 

    The cosmetic industry is awash is badly designed studies on all kinds of technology. And that is primarily because the studies are done by or funded by motivated researchers. There is no benefit to anyone in verifying that Glycerin is the best humectant for a skin care product. It's cheap. It's effective. There is no financial benefit to showing Petrolatum gives anti-wrinkling effects as good or better than active ingredients like ceramides or vitamins or any other ingredient of the day.  So, this is why I'm highly skeptical of most any "research" that conflicts with what has been accepted fact in the cosmetic industry for decades. I'm not closed minded, but the studies better be robust.
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