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Shelf Life: The Future of Preservatives

By: Nancy Jeffries
Posted: September 5, 2008, from the August 2006 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 4 of 5

“In Europe, where new regulations have established limits on the use-level of select preservatives, a need has become apparent for a preservative booster with application in a large spectrum of personal care products, including deodorants,” says Clarke.

Products such as Uniqema’s allow formulators to build in preservative enhancement effects along with a range of functional effects, such as good sensory properties, co-emulsification and cleansing in an ingredient identified as a phospholipid on the label.

“The move toward more natural products has some looking with a new eye at the levels of traditional preservatives required to achieve a suitably preserved system,” notes Clarke. Skin care emulsions, for example, now contain higher levels of natural ingredients than in the past. This often presents formulators with the added challenge of preserving difficult-to-preserve ingredients. According to Uniqema, tests have indicated that its product may offer substantial enhancement in difficult to preserve systems, even when traditional preservatives displayed very weak activity against fungal organisms.

Ciba® Tinosan® SDC is an antimicrobial preservative based on a water-soluble silver complex that, according to Ciba Specialty Chemicals, is particularly conducive for antimicrobial skin care formulations.

“(The product) corrects the previous problems with silver preservatives in that in most cases it does not precipitate or discolor,” says Ellen Werner, marketing manager, Personal Care NAFTA, Home and Personal Care Segment, Ciba Specialty Chemicals. “Because it is comprised of silver, citric acid and water, it is a natural preservative.”