Low conc. Hydrogen peroxide in water based products as preservative

Hi, Everyone

It is really hard to design a reliable preservative system for a water based, natural product with pH 6-8.

I read milk and food industry using hydrogen peroxide as preservatives, but it is rarely seen in cosmetic industry.

In my base pH 6-8, I have >90% water, 0.2% xanthan gum, 0.1% stevia, sugar alcohols and natural flavors. I am considering to use 0.1-0.2% peroxide as preservative. Any suggestions?

Anyone here tried peroxide as preservatives?

Comments

  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    Hydrogen peroxide is not an adequate preservative. It is not effective for long enough for a cosmetic product. 
  • EVchemEVchem Member
    I would think  another issue is hydrogen peroxide is a strong oxidizing and a reducing agent. Even at a low concentration I wonder how it would affect the product quality before it degrades 
  • PharmaPharma Member, Pharmacist
    EVchem said:
    I would think  another issue is hydrogen peroxide is a strong oxidizing and a reducing agent. Even at a low concentration I wonder how it would affect the product quality before it degrades 
    Jup, it's a strong oxidant and 'kills' all added antioxidants plus it will greatly speed up degradation of unsaturated fatty acids (they go rancid within days).
    How it affects the product is simple: degrading H2O2 turns into water and oxygen. The latter is a gas and your product goes *PLOPP* like an overfilled balloon within hours to a few weeks.
  • Perry said:
    Hydrogen peroxide is not an adequate preservative. It is not effective for long enough for a cosmetic product. 
    Thank you for your answer.
  • EVchem said:
    I would think  another issue is hydrogen peroxide is a strong oxidizing and a reducing agent. Even at a low concentration I wonder how it would affect the product quality before it degrades 
    Yes. It degrades essential oils in my experience. Thank you for your help.
  • lmoscalmosca Member
    Fenton chemistry may also be prevalent if using poorly purified ingredients (extracts, natural oils, water with higher-than-normal ionic content, or that has been stored in metal containers).

    If you have even a trace amount of metal ions (particularly the ferric or ferrous ions), that's where you generate hydroxyl radicals, HO•. 
    Those can react virtually with anything organic, and can even hydroxylate inorganic surfaces as well. 

    Going OT. For those interested in gruesome chemistry details, search online for "Piranha solution accidents". It's a mixture of concentrated sulfuric acid and hydrogen peroxide. The stuff violently incinerates anything organic, no matter if small or big, all thanks to the hydroxyl radicals. 
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