Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside in Personal Care Products

Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is a natural glucose alkyl ether. It is commonly used as a surfactant, emulsifier, and solubilizing agent in personal care products.
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Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is a natural surfactant obtained from vegetable-sourced glucose and fatty alcohols from natural oils. It is commonly used to provide effective yet gentle cleansing and foaming properties in skincare and hair care products. Caprylyl/capryl Glucoside is valued for its mildness, biodegradability, and versatility.

What is Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside?

Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is a glucose alkyl ether. It takes the form of a clear to light yellow viscous liquid (more transparent than most other glucosides). Caprylyl/capryl glucoside increases the foaming ability of skincare and haircare products.

Besides acting as a surfactant, caprylyl/capryl glucoside can also serve as an emulsifying agent, helping to mix and stabilize oil and water-based ingredients and blend denser oils, such as carrier oils, into products.

Chemical structure of caprylyl/capryl glucoside.

Source: Wikipedia 

Use of Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside in the Personal Care Industry

It is soluble in cold and warm water and various oils and solvents, making it helpful in formulating a wide array of cosmetic and cleaning products. It also combines well with other glucosides. Caprylyl/capryl Glucoside is compatible with various pH levels, making it versatile in formulating various personal care products. Additionally, it is a non-ionic surfactant, meaning it doesn’t carry a charge. This property makes it less likely to interact with other charged ingredients in a way that might destabilize a product’s formula.

Applications in Personal Care

SurfactantCaprylyl/capryl glucoside is a mild surfactant that can be applied to sensitive skin. It can increase the cleansing and foaming capacities of skincare and hair care products.
EmulsifierCaprylyl/capryl glucoside acts as an emulsifier that allows the mixing of water and oils, including dense oils such as carrier oils.
Solubilizing AgentCaprylyl/capryl glucoside is a highly effective solubilizing agent for essential oils, fragrances, and cationic surfactants. Due to this dual purpose, it is an excellent choice for the formulation of foaming aromatherapy products.

Product Examples

SkincareFace Wash, Gentle Face Cleanser, Micellar Water, Creams, Lotions
Bath & Body CareBath Foam, Body Wash, Shower Gel, Shower Cream
Hair CareShampoo, Hair Cleanser, Hair Conditioner
Sun Care Suntan Gels, Creams, and Liquids

Properties of Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside

Appearance at 25°CLiquid
Molecular Weight (g/ml)406.59704
Density at 20°C (g/cm3)1.13 -1.14
Viscosity (25°C)1000-3000 mPa.s
SolubilitySoluble in water
Melting Point °C (50.5 °F; 283.4 K)<0°C
Boiling Point °C (338 °F; 443 K)>100°C
HLB value13.4
Shelf Life24-36 months

Keep the container tightly closed; store in a cool, dry place.

Storage Stability

  • Storage temperature: 10-40°C.
  • Protect from temperatures below 10°C (below this temperature limit, the product is no longer pumpable).
  • Protect from temperatures above 50°C.

Typical Formulations

PEG-Free Clear Hydrating Toner

PHASEINCI NameTRADE NameSupplier %wt/wt
AWaterDeionized Waterq.s.
Disodium EDTAVersene® Na2 CrystalsThe Dow Chemical Co.0.10
BGlycerinGlycerine 99.7% USP Kosher Acme-Hardesty Co0.30
Butylene Glycol1,3-BGNexeo Solutions2.00
Hydrolyzed Jojoba Esters and WaterFloraesters K-20W JojobaFloratech0.50
Caprylyl/Capryl GlucosidePlantaren® 810UPBASF Corporation3.00
CHamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) WaterWitch Hazel Distillate preserved with Phenoxyethanol American Distilling, Inc.3.50
TrehaloseTrehalose 100Hayashibara Co., Ltd. 0.10
Sodium Hyaluronate Powder (1% Solution)Sodium Hyaluronate (and) Water Tri-K Industries Inc.0.10
DLactic Acid (and) WaterPurac® Hipure 90 (15% Solution)Corbionq.s
  1. Fragrance: Citrus Herbal ORC0801108 supplied by Orchidia 
  2. Preservative: Botanistat® PF-64 [INCI: Phenoxyethanol (and) Caprylyl Glycol (and) Ethylhexylglycerin (and) Hexylene Glycol] supplied by Botanigenics, Inc. 
  3. To prepare Purac Hipure 90 (15% Solution), combine the following ingredients with moderate propeller agitation at room temperature.
Purac Hipure 9015.00
Deionized Water 85.00

Formulation Procedure

  • At room temperature, add the Versene Na2 Crystals to the deionized water of Phase A with moderate propeller agitation and mix until completely dissolved.
  • Weigh the Floraesters K-20W Jojoba in a separate container. Add the other ingredients of Phase B to the Floraesters K-20W Jojoba, in the order listed. Begin mixing at room temperature with low to moderate propeller agitation. Make sure the Floraesters K-20W Jojoba is completely dissolved.
  • Add Phase B to Phase A with moderate to rapid propeller agitation. 
  • Add Phase C to Phase AB, one ingredient at a time in the order listed, at room temperature with moderate to rapid propeller agitation. Ensure each ingredient is uniformly mixed in the solution before adding the next ingredient.
  • Add Phase D with moderate to rapid propeller agitation to achieve pH 5.5. 
Typical Properties
Clarity96-100% transmittance

Source: Knowde 

Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside Formulation Considerations

  • Blend caprylyl/capryl glucoside with other surfactants to produce a foaming product with skin cleansing abilities. Cocamidopropyl betaine works exceptionally well as an additional surfactant.
  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is one of the easiest surfactants to work with and mixes simply with water and other surfactants. 
  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside can also be added to cream and cleanser bases to add foaming ability. Add to the cold process ingredients during production.
  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside provides a balance of flash foam and denser foam. To increase foam density, it is recommended to add coco and decyl glucosides.

Safety and Regulatory Considerations

FDA InformationCaprylyl/capryl glucoside is listed as a UNII ingredient substance safe to be used in Food and Cosmetics.
EU Information Caprylyl/capryl glucoside may be used in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in Europe according to the general provisions of the Cosmetics Regulation of the European Union.
Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) InformationThe CIR Expert Panel reviewed a study that indicated that caprylyl/capryl glucoside was not readily absorbed through the skin. Based on the data reviewed, the CIR Expert Panel concluded that the alkyl glucoside ingredients, including decyl glucoside, lauryl glucoside, arachidyl glucoside, caprylyl/capryl glucoside, and coco-glucoside were safe for use in cosmetics when formulated to be non-irritating.

Safety & Toxicity of Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside

  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside has been verified as a substance of low concern and can be used safely in cosmetics in recommended amounts. However, it may cause mild skin and severe eye irritation.
  • A study found that, at high concentrations, caprylyl/capryl glucoside caused long-term skin irritation, which resulted in other adverse effects, including body weight loss. No adverse effects were observed with lower concentrations that did not cause skin irritation.
  • As per the data given by EWG, the effect of caprylyl/capryl glucoside on skin irritation, allergies, and developmental and reproductive toxicity is of low concern.

Identification Numbers

Chemical NameDecyl D-gluco-hexopyranoside
CAS Number68515-73-1
EC Number500-220-1

Acceptable Limits or Maximum Usage

The maximum usage level of caprylyl/capryl glucoside in personal care products per CIR is as follows:

CategoryUsage Level
Baby products0.06%
Eye lotion0.2%
Eye makeup remover0.3%
Hair conditioners0.3%
Shampoos (non-coloring)3%
Tonics, dressings and other hair grooming aids0.5%
Hair dyes and colors (all types requiring caution statement and patch test) 3%
Skin cleansing (cold creams, cleansing lotions, liquids, and pads)0.9%
Face and neck creams, lotions, and powders0.8%
Body and hand creams, lotions, and powders0.3%
Night creams, lotions, and powders0.8%
Suntan gels, creams, and liquids0.3%

Source: CIR 

Fun Facts About Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside

  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is typically derived from natural sources, such as coconut or corn, making it a choice ingredient for those seeking natural or plant-derived options in their skincare and cleaning products.
  • Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is considered environmentally friendly because it is readily biodegradable, reducing its impact on ecosystems.

Additional Resources