Vegetable Glycerin

What is it? Vegetable glycerin is a thick, clear, sticky liquid derived from plants like palm and coconut
INCI Glycerine
Appearance Clear liquid that  looks like water, but is much more viscous.
Usage rate Up to 78.5%, though that’s a lot! Typical usage is lower—I usually use it at 3–30% in lotions.
Texture A thick, sticky liquid.
Scent A bit sweet (it tastes sweet as well).
Absorbency Speed Slow
pH  7
Solubility Water
Why do we use it in formulations? As a humectant to help draw moisture to the skin, and to add some gloss (and a slightly sweet taste) to products like lip gloss.
Do you need it? Yeah! I use it in loads of recipes.
Strengths A great humectant to add an extra boost to lotions and other emulsifier or water-based products.
Weaknesses Too much will make products sticky. How much is too much tends to be very personal as I find perceptions of stickiness are highly individual. I’ve made lotions with 30% glycerin and loved them!
Alternatives & Substitutions You’ll want to replace it with another humectant. Sodium lactate and propanediol 1,3 are good choices.
How to Work with It Include vegetable glycerin in the water phase of your products; it can be hot or cold processed. You may want to consider incorporating some dimethicone to counter any possible tackiness if used above 10–15%.
Storage & Shelf Life Stored somewhere cool, dark, and dry, vegetable glycerine (USA / Canada) has an indefinite shelf life.
Tips, Tricks, and Quirks You can use glycerin to make cool extracts! Most glycerin is vegetable sourced, but if you’re vegan you should confirm the source.
Recommended starter amount 100mL (3.3fl oz)
Where to Buy it  Buy it from an online DIY ingredient supplier or Amazon.

Some Formulations that Use Vegetable Glycerin


Posted on

September 2, 2016