A clear, colourless liquid with a very slight odour.
Stable in variable temperatures. It can be added to the hot water phase (stage 2) but be aware that it may also evaporate here and result in loss of efficacy. We recommend adding it to Stage 3 (cool down stage) in creams and lotions.
Stable across a wide range of pH values from pH 3 to pH 12.
It is fully effective in anionic, nonionic and cationic formulations. It is effective on gram negative and gram positive bacteria, yeasts, and mould fungi.
It is only partially soluble in water based products whilst more soluble in oil based products.
It is best used in creams, lotions and serums.
Do not use with shampoos and body washes as it will not be effective.
According to the Cosmetic Ingredient Database (Cosing), the functions of Phenoxyethanol are:
To view more information, visit the Cosing Database here.
According to the Cosmetic Ingredient Database (Cosing), the functions of Ethylhexyglycerin are:
To view more information, visit the Cosing Database here.
Can be used in all creams, lotions and gels.
It is oil soluble and only partially water soluble so we recommend adding it in the Stage 3 (cool down stage) when making creams and lotions.
As it is colourless, it will not change the colour or affect the clarity of gels. Use in treatment gels such as Aloe Vera or Hyaluronic Acid serums.
It can tolerate high salt content so is suitable for use in salt body scrubs. Body scrubs may be anhydrous and not be thought to need a preservative, but when they are used with wet hands in the bathroom environment, they should be preserved and Preservative 12 is an excellent choice for this.
Some of our best hair care products use a lot of herbs. Normally, infusions and decoctions have a greater risk for microbial contamination even when good hygiene practice is used (as it always should be). Preservative 12 should be used at the increased level of 1.1% to protect the product.
It also works well with non-ionic, anionic and cationic materials that are used in hair care products like conditioners.
Do not use with shampoos and body washes as it will not work.
Use 0.5% to 1%. In our formulations, we always use 1% unless part of the formulation includes herbal materials such as a tea infusion or decoction, then we use 1.1% which is also the maximum recommendation. Higher amounts than this have the potential to cause skin irritation.
It is not fully oil or water soluble so is best used with creams and lotions. When used in a water based product like a toner, it is more soluble if added to glycerin or sorbitol before being added to the toner. It can also be solubilised with Emulsifan.
It is heat stable but we still suggest adding to the Stage 3 (cool down stage) so that it is not lost in evaporation of the Stage 2 (water stage).
Effective in a wide range of pH.
The ethyhexylglycerin content can destabilise weak emulsions. To avoid this, make sure your cream and lotions emulsions are stable and strong before the preservative is added.
Store in a cool dry place out of direct sunlight.
The best method for measuring the preservatives (and all other raw materials) when adding to your products is to weigh them on an accurate scale that weighs down to 0.1 grams. You will find older formulations that use drops, but this is no longer accurate enough.
Do not blend different preservatives with each other unless you are experienced in this area and can have the result tested for efficacy. If you are adding extra materials to a base product, you may need to add extra preservative as well. Ensure the same preservative as the base product is used.
We do not recommend this preservative for use with clays. We found in our tests, that the clay absorbed the preservative leaving the water element vulnerable to contamination.
For more information and guidance on making your own skin care products please see Aromantic's books and eBooks in our Publications section.
These notes are not meant to replace medical guidance and you should seek the advice of your doctor for your health matters, The formulae are given in good faith and are intended for educational purposes only. They have not been evaluated or tested in any way and Aromantic Ltd. makes no claim as to their effectiveness. It is up to the reader to ensure that any products they produce from these recipes are safe to use, and if relevant, compliant under current cosmetic regulations.
Preservatives are needed for most cosmetic formulations that include water. There are some companies that have very stringent manufacturing procedures to ensure the hygiene of the product and the ratio of some of the materials may make the product quite stable against contamination. Shampoos can sometimes do this as they are often very alkaline. However, that alkalinity is not very comfortable on the scalp.
Vitamin E used to be referred to as a preservative because it preserved the shelf life of the product. This was, however, only from the oils in the product going rancid. It is not a preservative by today's accepted standards.
Hydrating Hair Conditioner - Makes 100 ml/g
This appears very liquid when bottled but it does thicken up overnight. This means it is easier to get into squeezy bottles.
Stage 1 - (above 75°C)
8% Argan Oil
2% Shea Butter
5% Emulsifying Wax
Stage 2: - (above 75°C)
78% Boiling Spring Water
Stage 3: - (below 40°C)
1% Preservative 12
5% Honey Moisturiser
1% Essential Oils of your choice (20 drops)
Heat the stage 1 ingredients to above 75°C in a double boiler.
Pour the boiling water into a larger stainless steel bowl and then pour the fat stage into the water stage. Keep above 75°C whilst stirring constantly for 5 minutes.
Remove bowl and cool down in a pan of cold water whilst still stirring. When it is below 40°C, add the stage 3 materials and mix thoroughly. Bottle and label.
See our video on how to make this argan hair conditioner below (video will open YouTube in a new tab).