Sunday, October 24, 2010

Preservatives: Phenonip

Phenonip is a liquid, broad spectrum preservative with an INCI of INCI: Phenoxyethanol (and) Methylparaben (and) Ethylparaben (and) Butylparaben (and) Propylparaben (and) Isobutylparaben (click here for links on parabens). It can be used at 0.25% to 1.0% in all your creations, including anhydrous ones because some of these parabens are oil soluble! With all these parabens, it is considered a very powerful preservative, so it's suitable for those creations that might contain a ton of botanical or natural ingredients, like extracts or hydrosols. It's paraben based and it is not a formaldehyde donor.

It's suggested that we use Phenonip in the heated phase of our creations as it dissolves around 60˚C to 70˚C. If you are making a lotion, it's suggested to divide the product up between the water and oil phases. If you want to use it in a cold product, heat up some propylene glycol or glycerin and add the Phenonip to that before adding it to your product. If you want to use it in a surfactant mix - say, a shampoo bar or body wash - then add it to the heated surfactant phase.

Phenonip is inactivated by some non-ionic ingredients, such as polysorbate 80 (at 5%, Phenonip is completely inactivated by polysorbate 80), and slightly by polysorbate 20 and 80 at 2.5%. It doesn't do well with ceteareth-20 - it's inactivated by 5% - but it is not affected by cetearyl alcohol. (I'll have a post on preservatives and non-ionic ingredients shortly...)

I like to use Phenonip in my emulsified scrubs, oil based scrubs, lotion bars, scrub bars, shampoo, and conditioner bars.

Summary of Phenonip:
INCI: Phenoxyethanol (and) Methylparaben (and) Ethylparaben (and) Butylparaben (and) Propylparaben (and) Isobutylparaben
Usage: In the heated phase of your product. Divide into the oil and water phases in lotions.
Suitable for all products, including anhydrous products.
Suitable for pH ranges of 3.0 to 8.0, so pretty much all of our products.

For the data sheet, click here. 


Richard Svensson said...

To my knowledge Phenonip is actually NOT a formaldehyde donor.

It doesn't have any ingredients that would be formaldehyde donors - parabens are not formalhyde donors and neither is phenoxyethanol.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Thanks for the comment. I've done a little more research this morning and although my favourite textbook says they are formaldehyde donors, I couldn't find any confirmation about that in any of my other texts. So I've updated the information on parabens that they are not known to be formaldehyde donors.

Click here for the updated link to the post on formaldehyde donors.

Aïcha Sebaa said...

What is you favorite textbook? :)

tq said...

Hi Susan! I was just mixing fragrance into a lotion I made last week and it wasn't incorporating the way I wanted. I almost reached for the Polysorbate (I have 20 and 80) when I realized that I'd read here that it will inactivate Phenonip! (Thanks for all your detailed information, by the way).

I was wondering, are there any other solubilizers that you would recommend to help fragrance oils incorporate when a lotion or other product is preserved with Phenonip? Or do the %s you mention in this post mean that if you add Polysorbate 20 at 1% it will be okay, and it's only if you go above 2.5% that it causes problems?

Thanks! Trish

Imanta94 said...

Phenonip unfortunately European union has outright banned isopropylparaben isobutylparaben and butylparaben at an level for cosmetic. Now what?

Adi S Latief said...

Thanks Susan for the great article.
Do you know how many % of Phenoxyethanol (and) Methylparaben (and) Ethylparaben (and) Butylparaben (and) Propylparaben (and) Isobutylparaben contained in..let's say 1 gram of Phenonip.


SHS said...

If Polysorbate 80 deactivates Phenonip and ewax is made from Polysorbate 80, can I use both in a recipe or no? One of the many things that keep me up at night regarding preservatives since I switched a lot of my emulsified scrubs to Phenonip. Thank you very much!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi SHS! I wouldn't use the two together because the preservative might not work. If you're planning to sell them, have them tested professionally and see if the preservative holds up over time.

SHS said...

thank you so would you use the ewax or the Phenonip? I'm so confused and I'm sorry for so many questions. I have some orders due next week and I'm just trying to figure out if I should switch out the ewax or the preservative. I truly feel like ignorance was bliss. The whole preservative thing makes my head hurt.

SHS said...

Sorry for another comment. I looked at your recipe for cocoa butter emulsified scrub and you use both e-wax and Phenonip. Your recipe looks a lot like mine. Thank you again.

Susan Thordsen said...

Really confused now! You told SHS that she should not use e-wax and phenonip together yet your cocoa butter emulsified scrub is using both? Help, my head hurts!😬

SHS said...

Me too. I went back to Optiphen because this makes my head hurt.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi SHS and Susan. I don't use e-wax that contains polysorbate 80. I use Polawax or BTMS-50 or Ritamulse SCG, neither of which contain polysorbate 80. Polysorbate 80 isn't necessarily in every emulsifying wax as they are all different, so it's up to the person using it to make sure the ingredients work together.

Having said that, I think it's something I want to address in these recipes, so from now on, I won't suggest e-wax for any product I make. It's Polawax or nothing as I can be sure that what I'm suggesting can't go wrong there. If someone chooses to change the recipe and use e-wax, it's up to them to ensure compatiblity.

I was answering your specific question about using an e-wax with polysorbate 80 in the comment above. In that case, Phenonip could be inactivated in theory. That is only applicable to an e-wax with that ingredient or the few others I mention in the post on inactivation. Not for all emulsifiers, and not for Polawax.

Preservatives aren't a difficult topic. It's just that there are a lot of choices, and each one has specific usage guidelines. I use liquid Germall Plus for almost everything these days - I think the only thing I don't use it for is my scrubs, but that is changing soon based on new information I have - because I know it'll work with them. I encourage you to read about preservatives and get comfortable with them. They aren't something that should make one's head hurt - they're something that keep us safe and make our products last longer. It's worth a good read!

Aileen said...

Hi Susan, I am going to be making your very lovely emulsifying sugar scrub. You recommend Phenonip. I don't have that but I do have Optiphen plus. Is it okay to use that or should I be putting in an order. I see Voyageur does not carry Phenonip so if I need it, can you point me in the direction of where I can get it. Thank you so much for your help.

anon said...

I have been using Phenonip in all my lotions that do not contain ewax/ploysorbates. I am using BTMS-50 and have not been able to find a definitive answer to a simple question: is Phenonip Ina rivaled, or affected in any way, by BTMS-50?

Christina said...

Is polysorbates the only thing that deactivates phenonip?
You stated cetearyl alcohol does not, so I'm assuming Cetyl alcohol is safe.
I wanted to mix up things with some of your other suggested lotion additives.
I did this recipe from soap queen, but then read your blog on how E wax(or at least the polyasorbate in it) deactivates phenonip.
Trying to try new additives to make a nicer lotion without deactivating phenonip
Here is soap queen recipe
18 oz. Distilled Water
1.2 oz. Shea Butter
1.7 oz. Sweet Almond Oil
1 oz. Avocado Oil
1.2 oz. Emulsifying Wax
1 oz. Stearic Acid
.2 oz. Phenonip
.1 oz. Fragrance

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Anon. No, it is not affected by BTMS-50. If it were, I would have mentioned it in the post.

Hi Christina. If there were, I would have mentioned it in the post. As this isn't my recipe, I will suggest you return to the Soap Queen's site and ask her questions about it there. She will be able to support you through making it if you approach her with all the information you need to make it well.

fie_jia said...

Hi Susan can i use optiphen pluss or germall plus for my lip product recipe such as lip stain that contain water ? or can you suggest me a better preservative for lip product that contain water ? thank you : )

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi fie_jia! I've tried to answer your question as part of today's Weekend Wonderings.

As an aside, I'm wondering if you could ask these kinds of questions on the appropriate posts? I have posts for both these preservatives, and no one looking for those will see the question here.

Susan Wilson said...

Ok so u say phenonip is deactivated by polysorbate 20 and 80, but u didn't mention 60. Mine is 60. So is mine ineffective as well? Help asap, my order is due very soon!!

Obaapa Madline said...

Hi Susan,I'm making a lotion with tons of botanical extract,im using emulsifying wax and phenonip as preservative,will it be a good match? I also have leucidal liquid,I will be using 15% zinc oxide in it as a sun screen, do you suggest I use phenonip or leucidal liquid as a preservative, thank you.

bfriend said...

I am making products to ship to Europe. I have been researching looking for a preservative that will meet the needs for lotions, body butters, and oil sprays/roll on's. What would be a preservative I may use. I would love to use Phenonip, however it is not allowed in Europe. Please help??

bfriend said...

Hi, I am looking for a preservative as similar to Phenonip as possible, however needs to be approved for use in Europe. Please help.