Propylene Glycol



Propylene Glycol is a multifunctional ingredient that is widely used in the the making of beauty and cosmetic products. Its benefits include moisturizing, solubulizing, penetration enhancement, improving the shelf life of products and more. You can find Propylene Glycol in the ingredient label of assorted personal care and cosmetic products.

INCI Name: Propylene Glycol

Other Names:  1,2-Propanediol

Ingredient Function: Humectant, Solvent

Derived from: Petroleum

Processing: Synthetic

Form: Liquid

Appearance: Clear, colourless, slightly viscous liquid (i.e. thick and sticky but lighter than Glycerin)

Smell: Little to no odour

Solvents/ Solubility: Soluble in water

Storage: Store in a cool, dry place./ Store in a closed container at a dry place at room temperature

Usage Rate: 1-8%, up to 20%

Formulation Notes:

  • Add Propylene Glycol to to the water phase of the formula
  • Some skin types, such as sensitive skin, experience irritation or allergic reaction from using products containing Propylene Glycol.
  • Alternative/ Substitution: Propanediol is a naturally-derived alternative to Propylene Glycol


Properties and Benefits of Propylene Glycol in Beauty and Skincare

  • Humectant and Skin Conditioning Properties: Propylene Glycol has the ability to attract water, and is therefore added used as an ingredient to add moisturizing and hydrating effects to formulations/ products
  • Solvent/ Solubilizer: Propylene Glycol can dissolve many ingredients, and so is used as a solvent across numerous industries including the food and cosmetic industry.
  • Preservative booster: Due to its antimicrobial properties which prevents growth of micro-organisms. So, when added in a formulation, Propylene Glycol helps boost the effectiveness and strength of the preservative, thereby extending the shelf life of the product.
  • Penetration enhancer: Propylene Glycol helps active ingredients in skincare or haircare product better penetrate into the skin
  • Stabilizer: Propylene Glycol has emulsifying properties and also helps stabilize emulsions
  • Enhances Spreadability: Propylene Glycol helps an emulsion glide better and easily spread on the skin
  • Safe for use in Skincare: It is safe for use in personal care and cosmetic products, including bath and body care products. It’s also used in the food industry. Manufacturers provide a usage rates guide for use of every ingredient, including Propylene Glycol


Common Uses of Propylene Glycol in Skincare and Haircare

Propylene glycol is an ingredient in moisturizing creams/ lotions, liquid makeup, shaving creams, deodorants, shampoos and conditioners, and more. Here are other types of skincare and haircare products that commonly contain Propylene Glycol:

  • Moisturizing creams/ lotions – Propylene Glycol helps hydrate the skin and holds in moisture, reducing any dullness, dryness or  flakiness so that the skin looks plumped
  • Ant-wrinkle creams – Due to its humectant and skin conditioning properties, Propylene Glycol helps smoothens out wrinkled skin to reduce the appearance of ageing.
  • Moisturizing hair shampoos and conditioners: Propylene Glycol when added to hair products, reduces fizziness and promotes a healthy and shiny hair.
  • Other types of products that have Propylene Glycol as an ingredient include deodorants, shaving products, mouthwashes and more.

*This product is for external use only; Use for cosmetic formulations only

Additional information

Weight N/A
Size in Litres

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