Surfactants for AHA cleanser

StormStorm Member
edited October 29 in General
Hi fellow formulators

I'm having trouble choosing the right surfactants for a gentle AHA cleanser, pH=4.5, sulfate free.

Below is what I have tested so far;

1- 10% Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate (Plantapon ACG HC) in water
- Reducing the pH to 5.0 using Lactic Acid, completely opaque, viscosity broke, after 5 minutes sitting without mixing, turned to an opaque gel.

2- 10% Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate (Dehyton DC-AS) in water
- Reducing the pH to 5.8 using Lactic Acid, completely opaque

3- 10% Sodium Lauramphodiacetate in water
- Reducing the pH to 4.5 using Lactic Acid, clear no sediment

4- 10% Coco Glucoside or 10% Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside in water
- Reducing the pH to 4 using Lactic Acid, they both stay clear with no sediments.

My questions are:
- What is the best Anionic surfactant (sulfate free) option for pH around 4.5?
- Why Cocoamphodiacetate is unstable at low pH while Lauramphodiacetate is stable?
- Between Coco Glucoside and Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside, which one has a better foam and milder?
- Is there a source to compare surfactants mildness, foam and pH stability?

Thanks for reading this long post and hope to hear your thoughts.


  • StormStorm Member
    I've accidentally posted this under general category and had to repost under formulating as I can't move this one!
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