Wednesday, December 4, 2013

What do you want to know? Is this a broad spectrum preservative?

In this Weekend Wonderings post, Elise asks: Would a combination of Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben & Propylparaben be a 'broad spectrum preservative'? 

If you look at the preservative quick reference chart, you'll see this is likely Phenonip or Liquipar Optima, which are both broad spectrum preservatives!

What is a broad spectrum preservative? It means it it kills off bacteria, mould, yeast, and other fungi or a broad spectrum of beasties that might contaminate our productsThe preservatives we buy are called synergistic preservatives, which are combinations of preservatives intended to eliminate all the various contaminants we could see in our products. If you see a product that is just one preservative - for instance, sodium benzoate or phenoxyethanol - then it's not a broad spectrum preservative, and you'll have to combine it with something else to get all the beastie killing power you need!

Related posts:
Preservative section of the blog
Preservatives: How the heck do they work?
What can get into our products? 


Anonymous said...

Hi Susan, would a combination of phenoxyethanol and potassium sorbate create a broad spectrum preservative? I was thinking of using it a body wash. Thanks as always, Rachel.

Elise said...

How cool that you used my question. I was a bit "shocked" when you wrote that if a product only contains phenoxyethanol as a preservative then it isn't broadspectrum because a lot of the skincare products on etsy seems to only use this one preservative. They claim their products can be used for a couple of months. It seems 'dangerous' to sell products to strangers when they don't contain the right preservatives.

Savauge Blends said...

I've been looking for this very subject before I start selling my own products.Thanks again.