Triethanolamine + Salicylic Acid

Hi friends,

If I have a 1% SA serum and I use triethanolamine to bring the pH up to a more comfortable level like 4.0-4.5 (I'm aware of the pKa of SA etc.), is the TEA and SA technically forming triethanolamine salicylate? Is that a problem and would it be more wise to use NaOH?

Thanks for any advice!

Jonah Ray | Owner & Founder

build (skincare) |


  • chemicalmattchemicalmatt Member, Professional Chemist
    The answer is yes, that product is triethanolamine salicylate, and amine salt not an amide. No problem using it other than the free DEA in TEA if you are using the 85% stock. Switch to 99% and that issue dissolves too.
Sign In or Register to comment.