w/o VS o/w emulsification techniques

Hi everyone,

Can someone please advise is there any difference to the way you emulsify o/w emulsion to how you do for w/o?

What i follow for o/w is 
Heat water phase to around 80C
Heat oil phase to 75C
Add oil to water. Homogenize around 5 minutes
Continue mixing till around 40C
Add heat sensitive ingredients.

Should I follow the exact method for normal w/o emulsion ? (not HIP)

I once read that w/o require homogenization step after it cools down, is this true?
I also read that you need to add the oil phase very slowly while mixing to the water phase (not all at once), is this correct?



  • DennisDennis Member
    It depends on the emulsifier. Which one do you intend to use?
  • chemicalmattchemicalmatt Member, Professional Chemist
    LOTS of differences in formulating and processing w/o emulsions @Shams.  Too many to discuss in one message. First thing is you very, very slowly add the WATER PHASE (disperse phase) to the OIL PHASE (continuous) not the other way around or you'll end up with amorphous soup.
    Read up, my friend. Research before developing.  
  • ShamsShams Member
    @Dennis I am using Arlacel 1689 (INCI Sorbitan Oleate (and) Polyglyceryl-3 Polyricinoleate) + GMS each at 5%. 

    @chemicalmatt Thanks for that. I am adding the water phase very slowly as you said. andthen homogenise. Do i still need to homogenise when the product cools down to 35C?
  • chemicalmattchemicalmatt Member, Professional Chemist
    Homogenize when all materials are combined and the appearance is uniform, usually below 45C.  Be advised that over-homogenizing can destabilize a system like yours too, so easy does it. The modified silicone emulsifiers are much more forgiving when used for w/o emulsification.
  • Dow Formulation aid 5225 is very forgiving. Es 5600 isn’t bad either. From so called natural isolan gps and emullium illustro by gattefosse. But the latter isn’t sold by repackagers. 
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