1% Ascorbic Acid in a Cleanser

We are currently having issues with a formula containing 1%  L-Ascorbic Acid in a surfactant based cleanser. Formula contains about 43.6% surfactants, 5% water and 50% glycerin. The packaging is exhibiting foaming. Are there any known interactions that I can look into to explain this problem. 

Comments

  • BelassiBelassi Member, PCF student
    Surfactants are SUPPOSED to foam.
    Cosmetic Brand Creation. Concept to name to IMPI search to logo and brand registration. In-house graphic design inc. Pantone specs. Cosmetic label and box design & graphics.
  • If you feel it's excessively foaming, it may be because of the high % of surfactants and the low % of water.  Some Manufacturers used to do that if they are using significantly Low Active surfactants.  For example using a certain brand of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate of 10% or 15% active.  So, they prefer to make most of the batch of this Low Active Surfactant (Because it's cost efficient) and add significantly less water because if they add more water with this low active surfactants, they may not be able to build acceptable viscosity between these surfactants and the other batch ingredients.  The other issue is what types of surfactants you are using:  Anionic, Amphoteric, and/or Non-ionic.  If you're using excessive amount of the anionic, this may be one of the reasons of excessive foaming.  Another issue is what is the reason of 50% Glycerin? Glycerin is usually used as solvent, Moisturizer, Humectant, or emollient.  It may not have much to do with cleansing.
  • 50% glycerin? :worried:
  • Is 43% an active surfactant mass? Maybe that’s the problem?
  • jrusso531jrusso531 Member
    edited October 2018
    I know surfactants are supposed to foam. Thanks for that.
    Belassi said:
    Surfactants are SUPPOSED to foam.
  • Thank you for your answer. I appreciate you taking the time to help me out. My "foam" is a gas reaction I think between the ascorbic acid and the surfactants. 

    JOJO91343 said:
    If you feel it's excessively foaming, it may be because of the high % of surfactants and the low % of water.  Some Manufacturers used to do that if they are using significantly Low Active surfactants.  For example using a certain brand of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate of 10% or 15% active.  So, they prefer to make most of the batch of this Low Active Surfactant (Because it's cost efficient) and add significantly less water because if they add more water with this low active surfactants, they may not be able to build acceptable viscosity between these surfactants and the other batch ingredients.  The other issue is what types of surfactants you are using:  Anionic, Amphoteric, and/or Non-ionic.  If you're using excessive amount of the anionic, this may be one of the reasons of excessive foaming.  Another issue is what is the reason of 50% Glycerin? Glycerin is usually used as solvent, Moisturizer, Humectant, or emollient.  It may not have much to do with cleansing.



  • Thanks for your answer, since I know all the issues with ascorbic acid and water. The plan was to decrease the amount of free water in the formulation. 

    em88 said:
    50% glycerin? :worried:


  • jrusso531 said:
    Thanks for your answer, since I know all the issues with ascorbic acid and water. The plan was to decrease the amount of free water in the formulation. 
    Water is not the only factor that reduces the ascorbic acid stability.
    We can not help you in terms of guessing the possible undergoing reaction of ascorbic acid and the surfactant without knowing the exact surfactants used in the formulation.
    It would be nice to know the pH of the solution and if heating is used during the preparation. 
    As presented your formulation is very unusual. 
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    You might want to re-think your formulation.  What are you really gaining by including 1% Ascorbic Acid in a cleanser?  Not much, if anything at all.

    50% Glycerin? ... that must be one really nasty cleanser to use.

    Why not just add some kakadu plum extract and be done with the ascorbic acid and glycerin.  Or, sodium ascorbyl phosphate ... you would have a better pH match with your surfactant blend.
    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
  • Product may color change in a year. what about adding sunset (orange) color? 
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