Home Cosmetic Science Talk General Low Odor/Odorless Preservative Systems for O/W Emulsions?

  • Low Odor/Odorless Preservative Systems for O/W Emulsions?

    Posted by Spadirect on February 3, 2019 at 1:40 am

    What are the Ecocert-compliant preservative systems (complete combination of ingredients for broad spectrum protection and preservation) with the lowest levels of perceptible odor (or even better, completely odorless) for O/W emulsions with pH between 5.5 - 7.0?

    I would greatly appreciate any suggestions, comments or discussion about Ecocert-compliant (or even not Ecocert-compliant) comprehensive preservative systems for O/W emulsions with pH between 5.5 - 7.0.


    doreen replied 5 years ago 4 Members · 4 Replies
  • 4 Replies
  • ngarayeva001

    February 3, 2019 at 8:28 am

    Germaben II -very low odor, doesn’t destabilize formulas (as many preservatives do), very efficient (probably one of the most efficient in the market), watersoluble which makes it work with surfactants, o/w (but not w/o) lotions, serums and clear gels. It’s transparent and colorless and doesn’t compromise the look of the final product. It will work for the pH range you mentioned.  One problem, it’s not approved by any natural standard. But it’s good to know about it in case you want to make something for personal use (or friends and family) and want it to have long shelf life.

  • belassi

    February 3, 2019 at 10:01 pm
  • Spadirect

    February 4, 2019 at 8:26 pm

    Kem Nat β sounds like an interesting solution.  To the extent that the benzyl alcohol’s scent is not too prominent and it remains an effective preservative at pH between 5.5 and 7.0, Kem Nat β would appear to be nearly perfect.

    The great thing about benzyl alcohol is that the scent it does give off is lightly floral and pleasant.  Even when it degrades into benzaldehyde the resulting scent is almond-like.

    You can’t go wrong with a lightly perceptible floral note that degrades into a lightly perceptible almond note.  It is my impression that as a general rule very light floral and almond scents are perceived as pleasing to the vast majority of the population.  Am I crazy for thinking this?

    Are there any other Ecocert-compliant preservatives that are low or no scent/low or no odor?


  • doreen

    February 5, 2019 at 11:12 am

    Optiphen BSB-N (Ashland) doesn’t have a strong smell. Benzyl Alcohol has a very light flowery scent, but it’s hardly noticeable in this blend.

    Edit: I see you already mention the scent of benzyl alcohol in your latest reply.
    (And no, you’re not crazy for thinking that floral scents are perceived as pleasing.)
    Benzyl alcohol does indeed degrade over time and cause an almond kind of smell.

    Geogard 221, also Ecocert, (to me) has a horrible and pungent smell, even in low concentrations. Really awful! Must be the dehydroacetic acid.

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