Ingredients in Cosmetics
Ingredients in Cosmetics
Over the years, lots of changes have taken place with regard to the use of ingredients in cosmetics
They come from a variety of sources, ranging from plants to minerals
Under U.S. law, cosmetic products and ingredients, other than color additives, do not need FDA approval before they go on the market
However, they must be safe for consumers under labeled or customary conditions of use
Companies and individuals who market cosmetics have a legal responsibility for the safety of their products and ingredients.
Under the law, the FDA cannot take action against a coal-tar hair dye for safety reasons as long as it has a special warning statement on the label and directions for a skin test. The caution statement reads as follows:
Caution – This product contains Ingredients in Cosmetics that may cause skin irritation on certain individuals and a preliminary test according to accompanying directions should first be made.
This product must not be used for dyeing the eyelashes or eyebrows; to do may cause blindness.
The most common Ingredients in Cosmetics are:
The most frequent Ingredients in Cosmetics are used as raw material
Distilled water or deionized water is used
Should be free from microorganisms and inorganic contaminants
Used to prevent microbial spoilage of cosmetics
Water promotes the growth of microorganisms and hence aqueous preparations should contain preservatives
Preservatives should be compatible with the preparation
Should be non-toxic, non-irritant, and non-allergenic
Should have good solubility
- E.g-Benzoic acid- 0.5%
Methyl paraben- 0.1%
Propyl paraben- 0.1%
Propyl paraben- 0.1%
Phenyl mercuric nitrate- 0.002%
Phenyl mercuric acetate- 0.002%
Dangers of certain Preservatives
Oils, fats, and Waxes:
- Used as bases for cosmetic preparations like creams, bath preparations, ointments, soaps, lipsticks, lotions, shampoos etc.
- Oils from different sources like volatile oils, vegetable oils, mineral oils
- Almond oil, Arachis oil, castor oil, coconut oil, olive oil and sesame oil
a) Light liquid paraffin
Mixture of liquid hydrocarbon. Lower viscosity, colorless and odorless oily liquid. Good spreading agent
Used in bath oils, hair oils, lotions, creams
b) Heavy liquid paraffin
Mixture of hydrocarbons
Colourless and odourless. Emollient in nature. Used in creams, lotions, brilliantines,hair oil,bath oil.
Mineral oil more stable than vegetable oil
Volatile oils / essential oils
- Peppermint oil, Lavender oil, lemon oil, anise oil
Fatty acids –Stearic acid (C12-C18)
In nature, stearic acid is found in the fats and oils of plants and animals. Animal fat samples typically consist of 30% stearic acid.
Most plant oils receive 5% of their volume from the amino acid, with the exception of cocoa butter and shea butter, which contain as much as nine times more stearic acid
Stearic acid is obtained from fats and oils by the saponification of the triglycerides using hot water (above 200 °C)
Commercially available stearic acid is mixture of palmitic acid and stearic acid
Used as Emulsifier for Creams, Lotions and Shaving Cream
Stearic acid also has important cleansing properties that make it useful in soaps, detergents, soaps, and cosmetics such as shampoos and shaving cream products
Soaps are not made directly from stearic acid, but indirectly by saponification of triglycerides consisting of stearic acid esters
Esters of stearic acid with ethylene glycol, glycol stearate, and glycol distearate are used to produce a pearly effect in shampoos, soaps, and other cosmetic products
They are added to the product in molten form and allowed to crystallize under controlled conditions
Fatty acids –Oleic acid
Causes rancidity, so preservatives have to be used
It increases pearly sheen in lotion and creams
Fatty alcohols- Cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol
White waxy solid
Used as emulsion stabilizer, Emollient
Hydrophobic in nature – produce occlusive film, which help in hydration of dry skin.
Fatty acid esters
E.g. Isopropyl stearate, isopropyl palmitate, isopropyl myristate, glyceryl monostearate
Oily nature and low viscosity
After applying to skin- thin, film on skin
Non-greasy in nature
Used as emollient or emulsifying agent
Used in lotion and creams
Mainly used in O/W type emulsion
Lanolin and its derivatives
Lanolin – a natural fat consists of higher fatty alcohols and higher fatty acids.
- Good emollient – due to hydrophobic and adhesive nature and adhesive nature
- Used at a concentration of 5%
- Produce W/O type emulsion
Lanolin alcohol – mixture of sterols, triterpine and aliphatic alcohols
E.g. Acetylated lanolin, Propionyl lanolin
Semi solid mixture of hydrocarbon obtained from petroleum
Two types- yellow and white soft paraffin
Emollient in nature
Hydrophobic in nature –produce occlusive film, which prevents water loss from skin
By reducing moisture loss, petroleum jelly can prevent chapped hands and lips, and soften nail cuticles, skin lubrication
White Soft Paraffin-
It is colorless and highly distilled
Yellow Soft Paraffin-
It is pale yellow color when not highly distilled
Collected from bee hives (Apis species)
Fresh Beeswax is white, but pollens, resins and other natural impurities may give it a light yellow to deep brown color
Yellowish brown in colour
M.P-: 62 – 65 pollens, resins and other natural0C.
Forms W/O type emulsion
Used in baby products, bath products, lipstick, makeup, fragrances, coloring and non-coloring hair products, nail and skin care products, personal cleanliness products, shaving products as well as sunscreen and suntan products
Help to keep an emulsion from separating into its oil and liquid components, especially in cosmetics and personal care products that require a creamy consistency
These waxes also increase the thickness of the lipid (oil) portion of solid and stick-like products such as lipstick, giving them structure, allowing for a smooth application, and keeping them solid
Spermaceti/ Sperma wax
Is a waxy substance found in the head cavities of the sperm whale (and, in smaller quantities, in the oils of other whales)
White- Crystalline substance
M.P- 420C – 500C
Used in creams & ointments
A botanical alternative to spermaceti is a derivative of jojoba oil, jojoba esters, C19H41COO-C20H41, a solid wax which is chemically and physically very similar to spermaceti
Esters of cetyl alcohol and jojoba oil are used as a substitute for spermaceti
Used in cosmetic formulations as an emollient, due to its remarkable similarity to the natural oil produced by the human skin, and its high oxidative stability
Used in cosmetics such as lipsticks, shampoos and moisturizing lotions
Paraffin wax /Hard paraffin
Mixture of hydrocarbons consisting of n-paraffins and their isomers
Obtained by distillation process from petroleum
It is colorless /odorless
Slightly greasy in nature
M.P – 50-70oC
It is the translucent in nature
Ozokerite Wax/Ceresin /Mineral wax
Obtained from natural ozokerite by purification process
Colorless, odorless and crystalline wax.
M.P- 50 -750C
Used in all kinds of stick cosmetics (lipstick, lip balm, concealers, deodorants), all kinds of emulsions (creams, lotions).
Complex mixture of isoparaffins
Has microcrystalline structure
Used in preparation of lipsticks
Carnauba wax (Brazil wax or Palm wax)
Obtained from leaves of palm grown in Brazil
Highest grade- light brown
Moderate grade- pale yellow
Characteristic bland odor
Hardest in nature
Used to thicken lipstick, eyeliner, mascara, eye shadow, foundation, deodorant, various skin care preparations, sun screens etc.
Candelilla wax is a wax derived from the leaves of the small Candelilla shrub native to northern Mexico and the southwestern US
Gives a smooth and glossy appearance to a lipstick if used at a slightly higher dosage concentration than the proportion of beeswax
Used to harden lipsticks, lip balms, soap bars
Candelilla wax can be used as a substitute for carnauba wax and beeswax
- Used to protect the preparation against oxidation
- Since fats and oils are used in cosmetic preparations, they are prone to oxidation
E.g Phenolic type – Gallic acid and salts, BHA, BHT
E.g Phenolic type – Gallic acid and salts, BHA, BHT
Quinone type – Tocopherol
Amine type – Lecithine, ethanolamine
Organic acids, alcohol and esters – Ascorbic acid, citric acid, oxalic acid
Inorganic acids and salts –Sodium sulfite, Sod. metabisulphite
- Humectants (or moisturizers) are important cosmetic ingredients allowing to prevent loss of moisture thereby retaining the skin’s natural moisture.
- Humectants typically draw water to the skin from two different places; they can draw water from a humid environment, and they enhance water absorption from the outer layer of skin
- Used in skin cosmetics, pastes
- They also prevent drying out of preparations in their containers
E.g. Glycerin, Propylene glycol, triethanolamine
Difference between an Emollient, Moisturizer, and a Humectant???
Emollients are used to soften and smooth the scales of the skin, which help reduce rough, flaky skin. They are also occlusive agents: substances that provide a layer of protection that helps prevent moisture (water) loss from the skin.
A humectant is a substance that actually bonds with water molecules to increase the water content in the skin itself.
Many humectant’s also have emollient properties, while not all emollients are humectants. The best moisturizers have a combination of emollients and humectants
- Surface active agents used to decrease interfacial tension
- Used as
Foaming agent and Cleansing agent
E.g. Anionic surfactants- Sodium stearate, Potassium stearate, Ammonium stearate, Sodium lauryl sulphate
Cationic surfactants- Benzalkonium chloride, Benzethonium chloride & cetrimide (Cetyl trimethyl ammonium bromide)
Non-ionic surfactant- Alkanolamides , Polyethylene glycol , Polyethyleneimine
Higher concentrations of SLS were responsible for severe irritation and even corrosion of the skin.
Enhance the aesthetic appeal of the preparation
Are of different types:
a) FD& C colours:that can be used in food, drugs and cosmetics
b) D&C colours- that can be used only in drugs and cosmetics
c) External D& C- that can be used only in topical preparation
- Organic dyes and their lakes
- Inorganic or mineral colors
- Natural colors or vegetable and animal colors
- Dyes are synthetic, chemical compounds that exhibit their coloring power or tinctorial strength when dissolved in a solvent
- They are usually 80 to 93% pure colorant material
- Dyes are also soluble in propylene glycol and glycerin
- They are available in a wider range of shades or hues with higher coloring power than the natural pigments
- Dyes are usually cheaper in cost
Eg. Tartrazine, Erythrosine, Sunset Yellow and Patent Blue V
- Lakes have been defined by the FDA as the “Aluminum salts of FD&C water soluble dyes extended on a substratum of alumina“
- Lakes, unlike dyes, are insoluble in water and color by dispersion
- The particle size of lakes is very critical to their coloring capacity or tinctorial strength
- Generally, the smaller the particle size, the higher the tinctorial strength of lakes due to increased surface area for reflected light
- Lakes are formed by the precipitation and absorption of a dye on an insoluble base or substrate
- The base for the FD&C lakes is alumina hydrate
Aluminum lakes- Brilliant Blue Lake, Sunset yellow lake, Amaranth lake, Allura red lake, Indigo carmine lake, Quinoline yellow lake
Inorganic colors or mineral colors
- They have opacifying capacity and stability towards light
- Wide regulatory acceptance, making them most useful
- Range of colors that can be achieved is limited
- Possibly the most important application of, mineral coloring in a present-day medicament is the use of a mixture of red and yellow ferric oxides to give calamine a flesh color
E.g Titanium dioxide
- Enhance the aesthetic appeal of the preparation
- Essential oils are used
- Jasmine oil, used for its flowery fragrance
- Lemon oil- Used medicinally, as an antiseptic, and in cosmetics
- Tea tree oil- As an antiseptic
- Rose oil- Used primarily as a fragrance
- Sandalwood oil- used primarily as a fragrance
- Lavender oil- used primarily as a fragrance, relief of anxiety and stress
- Ylang- Ylang- used for calming, antiseptic, and aphrodisiac purposes, as well as hypertension and skin diseases
- Spearmint oil- used in flavoring mouthwash and chewing gum
- Peppermint oil- used in flavoring mouthwash and chewing gum
- Chamomile oil- aromatherapy
- Clove oil- used as a topical anesthetic to relieve dental pain
- Patchouli oil- very common ingredient in perfumes
Ingredients in Cosmetics Summary
- Cosmetic raw materials are …………
- Oil, fats and Wax
Ingredients in Cosmetics FAQ:
Are all cosmetic ingredients safe for sensitive skin?
Ingredients in Cosmetics not necessarily. It’s essential to identify ingredients that may trigger skin sensitivities and avoid products containing them.
What should I look for in a cosmetic ingredient label if I have allergies?
Look for common allergens and fragrances, which should be clearly listed on the label. Conduct patch tests if you’re uncertain.
Is it better to use natural or synthetic cosmetic ingredients?
It depends on your skin type and personal preferences. Both natural and synthetic ingredients have their advantages, and the choice should align with your needs.
Are there any regulations for cosmetic ingredients?
Yes, regulatory agencies like the FDA in the United States and the EMA in Europe provide guidelines and regulations to ensure cosmetic ingredient safety.
How can I learn more about the ingredients in cosmetics?
You can research ingredients online, consult with dermatologists, or reach out to the product manufacturer for more information.
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