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PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride: An In-Depth Look at Its Role in Cosmetics

Article last updated: June 19, 2024

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Ever wondered what makes your favorite skincare products so effective? Dive into our in-depth exploration of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride and discover its transformative role in the world of cosmetics, from its creation to its myriad benefits and potential side effects.

What is PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride?

PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride, also known by its more complex chemical name Benzenemethanaminium, N-octadecyl-N,N-bis(hydropoly(2-oxyethyl)-, chlorides (10 mol EO average molar ratio), is a synthetic ingredient commonly used in cosmetic products. This ingredient is a type of quaternary ammonium compound, which is a class of chemicals known for their antistatic and cleansing properties.

The history of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride in cosmetics dates back to the mid-20th century when the demand for more effective and multifunctional ingredients began to rise. Initially, quaternary ammonium compounds were used in industrial applications for their disinfectant properties. Over time, their utility in personal care products became evident, leading to their adoption in the cosmetic industry.

PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride is synthesized through a chemical process that involves the reaction of stearyl alcohol with ethylene oxide, followed by quaternization with benzyl chloride. This results in a compound that can effectively reduce static electricity and cleanse the skin or hair by attracting and removing dirt and oil. The “10 mol EO” indicates that, on average, ten units of ethylene oxide are added per molecule of stearyl alcohol, giving the compound its unique properties.

The Benefits/Uses of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride

In this section, we will delve into the officially recognized cosmetic benefits and uses of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride:


One of the primary benefits of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride is its antistatic property. In simple terms, this means it helps to reduce static electricity, which can be particularly useful in hair care products. Ever noticed how your hair sometimes stands on end or gets frizzy, especially in dry weather? This ingredient helps to combat that by neutralizing the electrical charges that cause static. So, if you’re using a conditioner or a leave-in treatment containing PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride, you can expect smoother, more manageable hair with less flyaway strands.


Another significant benefit of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride is its cleansing ability. This ingredient acts as a surfactant, which means it helps to lift dirt, oil, and impurities from the skin or hair, making them easier to wash away. In practical terms, this means that when you use a shampoo, facial cleanser, or body wash containing this ingredient, it helps to ensure that your skin and hair are thoroughly cleaned. It’s particularly effective in formulations where a gentle yet effective cleansing action is desired.

Note: the listed benefits above are exclusively based on the officially recognized and defined functions of the ingredient, as documented by the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI).

Potential Side Effects & Other Considerations

PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride is generally considered safe for use in cosmetic products. However, as with any ingredient, it may cause side effects in some individuals. Here are some potential side effects of topical application:

  • Skin irritation
  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Allergic reactions

Regarding individuals who are pregnant or breastfeeding, data and research on the topical usage of PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride during pregnancy are lacking. Therefore, it is advisable for pregnant or breastfeeding women to consult a healthcare professional for further advice before using products containing this ingredient.

Side effects and adverse reactions from PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride are generally uncommon. However, it is always a good practice to perform a patch test before widespread usage to ensure that the ingredient does not cause any adverse reactions on your skin.

In terms of comedogenicity, PEG-10 Stearyl Benzonium Chloride has a low comedogenic rating, typically around 1 on a scale of 0 to 5. This means it is unlikely to clog pores and cause acne or breakouts, making it suitable for individuals prone to blemishes.

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