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Stearic Acid

INCI: Stearic Acid

Overview

APPLICATIONS

stabilizing / thickening emulsions
firmer lotion bars
hardening soaps

Stearic Acid is triple pressed, Kosher and Food Grade, the fatty acids from vegetable source is an excellent thickener and emulsion stabilizer for lotions and creams where Stearic Acid also improves the silkiness and glide of emulsions. Stearic Acid also makes an effective additive to improve the stiffness in stick products, soy candles, and the like. Often Stearic Acid is used to harden soaps, when neutralized Stearic Acid forms an in-situ soap (Sodium Stearate) which can be used as an emulsifier or cleansing agent.

We use it to thicken and harden our products when we want thickening and hardening, but we don’t want waxiness. Because stearic acid is an isolated fatty acid it thickens without adding the tack or brittle stiffness that wax can contribute.

Stearic acid is a naturally saturated occurring fatty acid that’s found in many oils we love. You’ll find it in relatively high percentages in hard oils and butters like cocoa butter (24–37% stearic acid), shea butter (20–50% stearic acid), and tallow (14% stearic acid)—it’s a big part of what makes them hard oils!

Stearic acid melts at 69.3°C (156.7°F) (that’s a higher melting point than beeswax!), making it a very effective hardening ingredient that raises the melting points of our products without adding any waxiness. It can be sourced from animal or plant sources, or synthesized, so if the origins of your ingredients are important to you, be sure to ask your supplier. You’ll also find derivatives of stearic acid in many other ingredients, like magnesium stearate and stearyl alcohol, and find it on ingredient lists for many different products—everything from soap to lotion to cosmetics. It creates a hard bar of soap with stable, creamy lather, contributes to stable emulsions, thickens and hardens concoctions, and adds occlusiveness. It’s pretty darn useful! It’s also very shelf stable and inexpensive.

ORGANIC FORMULATION: Accepted

regulations

REGUATORY STATUS: widely accepted

care

Possible Health Concerns/Side Effects: considered safe

restricted in: widely accepted

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