CosmeticsPolysorbate 60: Properties, Functions, and Applications

May 23, 2023by alpha0


Polysorbate 60 is a commonly used emulsifier and stabilizer in various industries. It is a yellowish, viscous liquid that belongs to the class of sorbitan esters. Polysorbate 60 finds applications primarily in the food industry as a food additive, where it acts as an emulsifying agent in processed foods such as baked goods, dairy products, and dressings. Its role is to stabilize and homogenize oil and water mixtures, improving the texture and overall quality of food products.

Polysorbate 60 Properties:

Polysorbate 60, also known as Tween 60, is a yellowish to amber-colored liquid or waxy solid. It is composed of sorbitol, ethylene oxide, and fatty acids derived from vegetable oils. Polysorbate 60 is soluble in water and compatible with a wide range of other ingredients. It is known for its emulsifying and stabilizing properties.


  • Emulsifier: One of the primary functions of polysorbate 60 is its ability to act as an emulsifier. It helps to blend two or more immiscible substances, such as oil and water, by reducing surface tension. Polysorbate 60 forms stable emulsions, allowing for the uniform distribution of ingredients in various products.
  • Stabilizer: Polysorbate 60 acts as a stabilizer by preventing the separation of ingredients in formulations. It helps maintain the stability and consistency of products, particularly those containing oil and water phases. By reducing coalescence and sedimentation, polysorbate 60 improves the overall quality and shelf life of various formulations.
  • Surfactant: Polysorbate 60 exhibits surfactant properties, meaning it can reduce the surface tension between different substances. This property enables it to improve the wetting, spreading, and dispersing characteristics of products. Polysorbate 60 is often utilized in personal care and household products to enhance their performance and effectiveness.


  • Food and Beverage Industry: Polysorbate 60 is commonly used in the food and beverage industry as an emulsifier and stabilizer. It can be found in a wide range of products, including baked goods, dairy products, salad dressings, ice creams, and beverages. Polysorbate 60 helps create a smooth texture, prevent ingredient separation, and improve the overall sensory experience.
  • Personal Care Products: Polysorbate 60 is extensively used in personal care products such as creams, lotions, and cosmetics. It helps emulsify oil and water phases, providing a stable and homogenous product texture. Polysorbate 60 is also utilized in shampoos, conditioners, and body washes to enhance the foaming properties and improve product efficacy.
  • Pharmaceuticals: Polysorbate 60 is employed in the pharmaceutical industry as an excipient in various formulations. It helps solubilize and stabilize active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in oral suspensions, ointments, and emulsions. Polysorbate 60 assists in enhancing the bioavailability and efficacy of pharmaceutical products.
  • Industrial Applications: Polysorbate 60 has applications in industrial processes such as textile and leather manufacturing. It assists in emulsifying and stabilizing substances during the production of coatings, paints, and adhesives. Polysorbate 60’s versatility and compatibility make it a valuable ingredient in numerous industrial formulations.


Polysorbate 60 is a multifunctional compound widely used as an emulsifier, stabilizer, and surfactant in various industries. Its ability to blend oil and water phases, stabilize formulations, and improve product performance has made it an essential ingredient in food and beverages, personal care products, pharmaceuticals, and industrial applications. Alpha Chemical Corp is committed to providing high-quality polysorbate 60 to meet the specific needs of customers in different industries. Stay tuned for more informative blogs on chemicals as we continue to serve the industry with our expertise.


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