Stearyl Alcohol

Basic Info:

  • Chemical Synonym(s): 1-Octadecanol; Octadecan-1-ol; Stearyl alcohol; Octadecyl alcohol; 1-Hydroxyoctadecane
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  • CAS Number: 112-92-5
  • Chemical Formula:


  • MSDS: Download


Boiling point
Melting Point
Flash Point
Refractive Index
1.457 (20ºC)
Water Solubility
Storage temp
Vapor density
9.3 (vs air)
0.812 g/mL at 25 °C (lit.)
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Stearyl Alcohol is a fatty alcohol that occurs naturally in some plants and animals. It falls under the category of fatty alcohol, which is a clear oily liquid or waxy solid with an intensely fatty odour.

The emulsifying and solubilizing properties ensure its popularity in a variety of personal care items such as shampoos, nonylphenol soaps, and ointments. It also finds use in foods and beverages to enhance their palatability by improving flavour and texture.

It has three disadvantages: it can cause minor skin irritation, dry out hair if applied to the scalp, and some people find the odour unpleasant. 

The advantages are that it's inexpensive, readily available in large quantities on the open market, nontoxic when used as a food additive, and a versatile product.


The main use of stearyl alcohol is as a lubricant or emollient. It can also be used as a stabilizer to prevent oxidation in oils and fats, for instance, sun-blocking creams. 

It is used in cosmetics, soaps, shampoos, and other personal care products to soften the skin by lubrication. It gives a silky feeling or moist quality to what it is added. In some cases, it is used as a drying agent because of its ability to repel water from itself.

In toothpaste, it helps reduce foam buildup of toothpaste after brushing your teeth and offers a smoother feel of the tongue after brushing your teeth with toothpaste containing it that can decrease dryness of the mouth or oral discomfort.

The manufacture of metal goods is used as a primer to soak up oil from machined parts before they are painted to create a durable finish that will resist rusting. 

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