What Is It?
Stearyl Alcohols are a large class of important cosmetic ingredients but only ethanol needs to be denatured to prevent it from being redirected from cosmetic applications to alcoholic beverages., Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol are long chain fatty alcohols. Stearyl Alcohol is a white, waxy solid with a faint odor, while Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol are clear, colorless liquids. These three ingredients are found in a wide variety of products such as hair conditioners, foundations, eye makeup, skin moisturizers, skin cleansers and other skin care products.
Why Is It Used?
Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol help to form emulsions and prevent an A mixture of two liquids that normally cannot be mixed, in which one liquid is dispersed in the other liquid as very fine droplets. Emulsifying agents are often used to help form the emulsion and stabilizing agents are used to keep the resulting emulsion from separating. The most common emulsions are oil-in-water emulsions (where oil droplets are dispersed in water) and water-in-oil emulsions (where water droplets are dispersed in oil). from separating into its oil and liquid components. These ingredients also reduce the tendency of finished products to generate foam when shaken. When used in the formulation of skin care products, Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol act as a lubricants on the skin surface, which gives the skin a soft, smooth appearance.
Stearyl Alcohol and Oleyl Alcohol are mixtures of long-chain fatty alcohols. Stearyl Alcohol consists primarily of n-octadecanol, while Oleyl Alcohol is primarily unsaturated 9-n-octadecenol. Octyldodecanol is a branched chain fatty alcohol. Fatty alcohols are higher molecular weight nonvolatile alcohols. They are produced from natural fats and oils by reduction of the A natural organic compound that consists of a carboxyl group (oxygen, carbon and hydrogen) attached to a chain of carbon atoms with their associated hydrogen atoms. The chain of carbon atoms may be connected with single bonds, making a ‘saturated’ fat; or it may contain some double bonds, making an ‘unsaturated’ fat. The number of carbon and hydrogen atoms in the chain is what determines the qualities of that particular fatty acid. Animal and vegetable fats are made up of various combinations of fatty acids (in sets of three) connected to a glycerol molecule, making them triglycerides. (-COOH) grouping to the hydroxyl function (-OH). Alternately, several completely synthetic routes yield fatty alcohols which may be structurally identical or similar to the naturally-derived alcohols.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reviewed the safety of Stearyl Alcohol and approved its use as a multipurpose additive for direct addition to food. Stearyl Alcohol and Oleyl Alcohol have also been approved for use as indirect food additives. The safety of Stearyl Alcohol and related ingredients has been assessed by the The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) was established in 1976 as an independent safety review program for cosmetic ingredients. The CIR Expert Panel consists of independent experts in dermatology, toxicology, pharmacolgy and veterinary medicine. The CIR includes participation by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and the Consumer Federation of America. (CIR) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated the scientific data and concluded that Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol were safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products. In 2004, the CIR Expert Panel considered available new data on Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol and reaffirmed the above conclusion.
CIR Safety Review: The CIR Expert Panel noted that Stearyl Alcohol is found naturally in various mammalian tissues and the metabolism of Stearyl Alcohol and Oleyl Alcohol in animals is well described. Due to the chemical nature and benign biological activity of these compounds, they are not suspected of significant potential for carcinogenesis, reproductive or developmental effects. Furthermore, tests in humans of products containing these ingredients demonstrated low potential for skin irritation or sensitization.
FDA: Link to Code of Federal Regulations for Stearyl Alcohol and Oleyl Alcohol
If they are made from plants, Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol may be used in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in Europe according to the Under the general provisions of the cosmetics regulation of the EU, ingredients appearing on the following function-specific annexes must comply with the listed restrictions and/or specifications: colorants (Annex IV), preservatives (Annex V), UV filters (Annex VI) and other ingredients with specific concentration limits and/or other restrictions (Annex III). Ingredients specifically prohibited from use in cosmetic products are listed in Annex II. Other ingredients listed in the EU cosmetic ingredient database (CosIng) may be used without restrictions.. Ingredients of animal origin must comply with the European Union animal by-products regulations.
More Scientific Information
Fatty alcohols, including Stearyl and Oleyl Alcohols occur in small quantities as components of wax esters in plants and animals. The compounds serve to protect the outer surface of plants and animals from water loss. Stearyl Alcohol, Oleyl Alcohol and Octyldodecanol function as emulsion stabilizers, An ingredient that helps two substances that normally do not mix to become dissolved or dispersed in one another. Also called a surface active agent. – emulsifying agents, antifoaming agents, and skin conditioning agents – emollient in cosmetics and personal care products.