Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating PVP K30 vs. PVP K90

  • PVP K30 vs. PVP K90

    Posted by Lab on July 18, 2023 at 7:25 am

    Hey guys!

    I would really like your opinion on these two types of PVP. When you need to use this ingredient, which one do you usually choose? Are there any limitations on the types of formulations where each can be used, or is it more a personal thing?

    For now, I only have experience with K30, but a colleague commented that K90 is more often used in colored cosmetics as it evens out the color and I was thinking of using it. Is this correct? Are there any other advantages to using K90, or precautions to be taken (such as dissolving in water)?

    NOTE: At the moment I am manipulating some prototypes of different colored cosmetics, but the question is not limited only to them.

    Thanks (:

    • This discussion was modified 11 months, 1 week ago by  Lab.
    Hpmangukiya replied 11 months, 1 week ago 3 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • Hpmangukiya

    Member
    July 19, 2023 at 2:52 am

    Yes, that is correct. PVP-K90 is more often used in colored cosmetics than PVP-K30 because it has better film-forming properties and is more transparent. This means that it can help to even out the color of the product and make it appear more uniform.

    Here are some other advantages of using PVP-K90 in colored cosmetics:

    • It is more resistant to water and heat than PVP-K30, which means that it can help to keep the color of the product from fading.
    • It is less likely to cause irritation than PVP-K30, which makes it a good choice for people with sensitive skin.

    Here are some precautions to take when using PVP-K90 in colored cosmetics:

    • It is important to dissolve PVP-K90 completely in water before adding it to the formulation. If it is not dissolved completely, it can form clumps that will make the product look cloudy.
    • PVP-K90 can absorb moisture from the air, so it is important to store it in an airtight container.

    Overall, PVP-K90 is a good choice for colored cosmetics because it has good film-forming properties, is transparent, and is less likely to cause irritation. However, it is important to dissolve it completely in water before adding it to the formulation and to store it in an airtight container.

    I hope this helps! Let me know if you have other questions.

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    • Lab

      Member
      July 19, 2023 at 9:31 am

      Wow, thank you very much for your answer!

      Seems to be a good choice for color products, I think I’ll try that route. And it’s good to know that it has more transparency, if any gel or similar goes wrong next time, maybe I’ll replace the polymer!

      Would you know if I should use it in a lower concentration than K30, and if there is any basis for that? For example, if I use 2% PVP K30 in a gel, the ideal would be approximately how much K90?

      Thank you for your help!

      • Hpmangukiya

        Member
        July 19, 2023 at 11:51 pm

        yes, it is generally recommended to use PVP-K90 in a lower concentration than PVP-K30. This is because PVP-K90 has a higher molecular weight and is therefore more viscous. As a result, it can be more difficult to disperse in water and can form clumps if used at too high of a concentration.

        A good rule of thumb is to use 1-2% PVP-K90 in a gel. If you are using 2% PVP-K30 in a gel, then you could try using 1% PVP-K90. However, it is always best to test the formulation to see what works best for your specific product.

  • chemicalmatt

    Member
    July 19, 2023 at 9:17 am

    PVP K-90 is the larger polymer chain length version of PVP K-30, the only difference between the two. In hair styling K-90 will give a harder hold per gram weight but is less soluble in water and less flexible when plasticized. Think crunchier. The K-30 is easier to work with, plasticizes better, flakes less and hair hold properties may be improved by simply adding more to the formula (it is less expensive than K-90.) I cannot speak to how each PVP interacts with color cosmetics, as that medium is not my jam. As film formers go, both are hygroscopic to similar degree.

    • Lab

      Member
      July 19, 2023 at 9:28 am

      Thanks for your overview, Matt! It was very useful!

      I think we have some samples around here, maybe I’ll run some tests to see how the polymer behaves. Do you have any tips to facilitate the dissolution in water? I thought about dispersing in glycerin before, maybe a 3:1 ratio will work?

      • Hpmangukiya

        Member
        July 19, 2023 at 11:53 pm

        there are a few tips that can help to facilitate the dissolution of PVP-K90 in water.

        • Use warm water: PVP-K90 dissolves more easily in warm water than in cold water. So, if you are having trouble dissolving PVP-K90 in water, try using warm water instead.
        • Grind the powder: PVP-K90 is a very fine powder, so it can be difficult to dissolve. Grinding the powder into a finer powder will make it easier to dissolve.
        • Disperse in glycerin: Glycerin is a hygroscopic solvent, which means that it attracts water. Dispersing PVP-K90 in glycerin will help to hydrate the powder and make it easier to dissolve.
        • Heat gently: Heating the mixture gently can also help to dissolve PVP-K90. However, it is important to heat the mixture gently, as overheating can damage the PVP-K90.
  • chemicalmatt

    Member
    July 19, 2023 at 9:31 am

    Disperse into water heated to >50C and mix until dissolved, then go from there. Pre-mixing polymers is a practice I often try to discourage in cosmetic chemists. A story for another day.

    • Lab

      Member
      July 19, 2023 at 9:36 am

      No problem, thank you so much for sharing this method! I will follow this for sure (:

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