Stearyl alcohol is an organic compound, usually appearing in the form of white crystalline granules, derived from fats and oils.
Stearyl alcohol is in a class known as fatty alcohols, which, unlike irritating types of alcohols, do not dry out skin. Stearyl alcohol is typically produced through hydrogenation (process change from a liquid into a solid or semi-solid state) of stearic acid. Stearic acid is a saturated fatty acid prevalent in animal fats, but rich plant sources of stearic acid include palm fruit, cocoa butter and shea butter. The stearyl alcohol we use is derived from plant (non-animal) sources.
Stearyl alcohol can be used in personal care products as an emollient, helping to nourish skin and hair, leaving them soft and smooth. This ingredient also has emulsion stabilizing properties, and can be used to help balance and add structure to oil-water formulations.
Other names: C18H38O, Alcohol Stearylicus, 1-Octadecanol, 1-Hydroxyoctadecane