Are you looking for an ingredient to make your natural products even more effective? Well Glycerine could be the answer!
Glycerine is one of the most popular humectants used in natural and organic cosmetic formulations due to it providing multi-functional benefits to the end product. At an aesthetic level, it will improve the glossy appearance of a cream, lotion or body butter and it helps increase the spreadability on the skin.
One of the most significant skin benefits Glycerine provides is its ability to retain moisture. It helps to balance the skin's natural moisturising factor (NMF) through its humectant effect.
By absorbing moisture from the environment it can help improve skin hydration and strengthen the skin barrier. On an intercellular level it helps to minimise dryness and slows the signs of ageing by directly supporting consistent cell maturation. This helps achieve a healthy complexion and smooth skin texture.
Glycerine is also a valuable ingredient in soaps for adding extra moisturisation, and in haircare products, as it can help to smooth frizzy, dry hair and defend against damage caused by styling and colouring.
It is also useful as a solvent of active ingredients that are not necessarily soluble in water, and it is an excellent base for natural plant extracts. Whether used in a tincture or a hydro-glycerin form it has a natural extractive action which increases the potency of the finished product.
Other than in cosmetics, Glycerine is regularly used in the food industry as a natural sweetener, a preservative and a thickening agent. In pharmaceuticals it is often incorporated in cough syrups, lubricants, gel capsules and other medicinal preparations. It is also very useful in personal care items such as toothpaste and mouthwash.
What is Glycerine?Glycerine, also know as Glycerol or Glycerin, is a sugar alcohol compound which is naturally present in the form of triglycerides in all lipid fats and oils.
It is a clear, viscous liquid that has a syrupy appearance. Odourless and colourless, with a mild sweet taste, it is soluble in water and alcohol and is extremely stable with a very high boiling point. Liquid at room temperature, it can crystallise slightly in the cold but will easily liquefy without any degradation.
How is Glycerine produced?Vegetable oils such as soy, corn or palm are used to produce natural glycerine. The oil is subjected to a process called hydrolysis whereby the fats and oils are broken down into esters using water at very high temperatures. This process sees the creation of a sweet water that contains crude glycerine. Impurities are removed through evaporation and distillation resulting in a light yellow coloured product. This is further treated with Carbon (CO2) and finally filtered to produce the clear, colourless, high purity glycerine.
How do you use Glycerine in cosmetics?Typically, Glycerine is included in the water phase when manufacturing oil and water emulsions such as lotions, creams and body butters and it is also a popular ingredient in haircare.
The percentage used can vary based on the formulation but 5% is an effective amount that will achieve positive results for both the skin feel and the product appearance.
Want to learn more about natural skincare making? We have a great selection of topics to choose from...so why not book yourself a ticket and join us for a workshop soon!