In the world of cosmetics, “emulsion” is a common term. Most lotions and creams are emulsions. Emulsions are one of the most common forms of cosmetic products. You find them in skin lotions, make-up, and hair products. By definition, an emulsion is a dispersion of two or more immiscible materials, where one phase, also known as the internal phase, is dispersed in the continuous or external phase.
Cosmetic emulsions are classified as:
oil in water, (O/W),
water in oil (W/O) and
water in silicone (W/Si)
multiple emulsions such as oil in water in oil (W/O/W) are also possible.
Emulsifiers are agents that assist in mixing oil and water. What we need is something that can link one ingredient to the other, so they don’t separate. In addition to helping the ingredients get along, emulsifiers also create more stable solutions that last longer on your shelf.
How much emulsifier should I use?
Refer to our factsheets for suggested concentrations of emulsifiers to use. Texture, feel and thickness of a cream or lotion is a personal preference, so trial and error is recommended.