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Beauty, Wipes and Preservation

By: Jeff Falk
Posted: November 7, 2006, from the November 2006 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 2 of 6

Perhaps the most important advancements in wipe technology are those made in preservatives. Basically, ensuring that personal care and cosmetic formulas designed for use in wipes are viable end-use products.

Preservative Selection

Preservatives appropriate for traditionally packaged personal care and cosmetic products may not be equally suitable for preserving wipes, and preservatives for wipes face a number of challenges beyond the product formula.

“Several considerations in choosing effective preservatives for cosmetic and personal care products are common whether the product is a wipe or not,” said Susan Lindstrom, senior manager, R&D microbiology, International Specialty Products. “These qualities are broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity, stability over time, compatibility with the most commonly used raw ingredients, the product matrix itself and non-irritation to the consumer during use. However, the unique nature of cosmetic wipes will impact preservative selection.”

The liquids in wet wipes contain more water than most other cosmetic formulations, which limits the use of paraben-based preservatives. Therefore, a preservative with sufficient water solubility isessential.

“Water solubility of preservatives in wet wipe applications is very important in order to properly and uniformly disperse the preservative throughout all areas of the non-woven substrate,” said Steve Orofino, senior manager preservatives R&D, International Specialty Products. “Lower solubility preservatives tend to adsorb to the non-woven, and will not properly disperse throughout the system—leaving areas of low or unprotected non-woven, which can lead to the possible growth of microorganisms.”