Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Triethanolamine in Lotion

  • Triethanolamine in Lotion

    Posted by Zeeshan on April 27, 2021 at 8:18 am

    Hi All,

    When formulating a lotion, what role does TEA play? Is it just as a pH adjuster? 

    If so, is there a minimum amount required or should I just put enough to reach the desired pH.

    We are currently putting 0.8% of TEA 99%  but the pH is too high. If I half this, would it affect anything else other than the pH?

    Below is the current formula

    STEARIC ACID      2.00
    G. M. S                 2.00
    C. S. A                 1.00
    I. P. M                  0.50
    P. JELLY                1.00
    WHITE OIL            7.00
    GLYCERINE           2.50
    M.P.G                   0.50
    T. E. A                  0.80
    DIMETHICONE      0.25
    M. PARABEN         0.20
    H2O                     82.25



    Zeeshan replied 2 years, 9 months ago 3 Members · 6 Replies
  • 6 Replies
  • ngarayeva001

    April 27, 2021 at 8:53 am

    In this case, it’s a crucial part of emulsification system. Do not cut it as it will compromise emulsion stability. TEA-stearate emulsions are always above 7. Probably it’s 8-8.5 but that’s typical for this emulsifier.

  • ngarayeva001

    April 27, 2021 at 8:54 am

    and methylparaben alone isn’t broadspectrum

  • Zeeshan

    April 27, 2021 at 9:50 am

    @ngarayeva001 thank you for your response and feedback.

    For the preservative, what else should be used to make it broad spectrum?


  • ngarayeva001

    April 27, 2021 at 2:51 pm

    i am not an expert on preservatives. the safest way is to use ready blend. phenonip for example.

  • paprik

    April 27, 2021 at 7:08 pm

    Regarding the preservative - I’ve heard that methylparaben is fungicidal, however in creams and lotion can be broad spectrum.  
    I think the easiest one to work with is Liquid Germall Plus. Affordable, effective and almost fool prove. 

  • Zeeshan

    April 29, 2021 at 12:19 pm

    Thank you all for your responses - much appreciated.

    As I should not reduce the amount of TEA, how can I reduce the pH of the product? The limit in our country is 8.5 and I am on the higher end of the limit.


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