Preservatives, IPCS, FB groups
I am currently doing the IPCS diploma and when I see things like this, I have to question if I’m doing the right course. The idea was for me to get my foot in the door, hopefully get some work experience (plus, Perry’s course isn’t recognised in Australia :() anyway…
I notice that @Graillotion has now left the faceboook group this was in, he was the only reason why I was still there (just to watch him school some of these people ever so patiently like he does).
Someone commented that they put Geogard ECT in every formula. To which I replied that I had seen Geogard ECT fail PET and that it was better suited to a lower pH product and always with a chelator. This is correct right? It has two acids - so is better suited to pH 5.5 even though supplier advertises it’s up to 8.0pH. @PhilGeis ??? your input on this would be appreciated.
This is what I said:
“just because IPCS send it doesn’t mean anything and it’s decent if you keep the pH low and add a chelator. It has two acids in it so it needs to be under 5.5 no matter what the supplier says. the active ingredients in Geogard ECT, benzyl alcohol, salicylic acid and sorbic acid, are more effective at killing microorganisms at lower pH levels. This is because they are less able to penetrate the cell membranes of microorganisms at higher pH levels. Over 5.5pH you should be added something for fungi. As I said, I’ve seen it fail PET so just beware. Go to chemist’s corner and search Phil Geis, better yet, read his book on bugs.”
This was the response I got:
“You do understand that suppliers get their inputs and pH ranges by scientists who do vigorous testing on the ingredient. It isn’t just blindly advertised. Every ingredient undergoes significant clinical trials to ensure they are safe at a specific range as well as pH range. And any preservative can fail for a number of reasons, it doesn’t mean that the preservative is not broad spectrum. It means that the formulation has incompatibilities which is why the preservative is failing.”
Would love to know if my thinking is correct. Am I doing the right thing with Geogard ECT? I don’t completely trust what suppliers are telling me but I’m not going to reply to that last comment, I do not feel like engaging, it’s why I liked that Graillotion was on that group. I could watch him argue with the DIYers without getting involved.
It does seem to be added to a lot of IPCS formula builds (which I’ve been treating like ULP ones) use geogard ECT even at pH 7+
This isn’t the first time I’ve been disillusioned by IPCS teaching. In lab sample size, IPCS have us using a whisk and stainless steel bowl - which I refuse to use because I do not believe that I can get high sheer via hand whisking. They do talk about sheer and using equipment, but, in basic lab formulations - it is usually a whisk unless they state otherwise and if you look at their youtube channel, in a lot of the videos, Belinda is seen using a whisk and stainless steel bowl. By no means, do I think they are advocating using a whisk but it does make me question why they’d teach this. When I asked my trainer about this and was referred back to text, which mentions high sheer.
I did email them in regards to the way they teach vitamin E usage (input, when to add etc) and the response I got from my trainer was to “watch [xx] video”, the video was what led me to questioning their vitamin E usage in the first place.
So, I don’t believe there’s any point in emailing my trainer to get clarification on why they are calling fatty acids and fatty alcohols emulsifiers.
Yesterday I came across that they are defining stearic acid as an “emulsifier” -
“Stearic acid is an anionic emulsifier (holds a negative charge) which helps oil and water combine together. Cetyl alcohol is a nonionic emulsifier with the same function as stearic acid. Anionic emulsifiers help with the stability in warm climates but are relatively irritant to the skin, which is why they are used at low inputs.”
which I think would confuse a lot of new formulators? My understanding is that it has some very weak emulsifying properties but it has a high HLB and is better used as a thickener/stabiliser etc. You can react it with an alkali to form an emulsion base though, I’d still call it a co-emulsifier. I am pretty certain that stearic acid struggles to form micelles on its own. It does help other surfactants form micelles by creating a coating surrounding the droplets in an emulsion and making it harder for droplets to interact with each other in this kind of stearic layer thus helping to prevent coalescence.
My question, to the brain’s trust, is why? Why would they be teaching that stearic acid is an emulsifier when at best, it’s a co-emulsifier? Am I missing something?
Just remembered, on the pre learning component, there was a question “What is cetearyl alcohol commonly used in personal care products for?” which I answered as follows: “Cetearyl alcohol is a non-ionic surfactant that is often used as a co-emulsifier. Typically, it has a limited number of uses when used all by itself. Co-emulsifier (has HLB of 15.5) / fatty alcohol. It is a mix of cetyl and stearyl alcohols. Cetearyl alcohol is a fatty alcohol thickener and stabiliser.”
In the pre-learning materials their (IPCS) definition of Cetearyl Alcohol:
“Cetearyl alcohol is commonly used in the personal care industry as an emulsifier because it helps two immiscible substances, such as oil and water, to be mixed. It also has surface <i style=”background-color: var(-bb-content-background-color); font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; color: var(-bb-body-text-color);”>active properties because it contains a water loving (hydrophilic) and water hating (hydrophobic) portion.”
Maybe alarm bells should have gone off when they used this definition of cetearyl alcohol, which again, I wouldn’t call an emulsifier but rather a co-emulsifier.
I am concerned now that I’m doing another course that is as bad as formula botanica. Hopefully as modules go on, it will become more involved.
- This discussion was modified 5 months, 3 weeks ago by Juggsy.
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