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Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate: An In-Depth Look at Its Role in Cosmetics

Article last updated: June 13, 2024

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Ever wondered what makes your favorite skincare products so effective? Dive into the world of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate and discover its transformative role in cosmetics, from its creation to its myriad benefits and potential side effects.

What Is Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate?

Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate, also known by its chemical name (Z)-N-Methyl-N-(1-oxo-9-octadecenyl)glycine, compound with 2,2′,2”-nitrilotri(ethanol) (1:1), is a versatile ingredient commonly found in various cosmetic products. This compound is derived from the combination of oleic acid, a fatty acid commonly found in olive oil, and sarcosine, a natural amino acid. The “Tea” in its name refers to triethanolamine, which is used to neutralize the sarcosine, making it more stable and effective in formulations.

Historically, Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate has been utilized in the cosmetic industry for its multifunctional properties. It gained popularity as formulators sought ingredients that could deliver multiple benefits in a single application. Its ability to act as an antistatic agent, cleanser, foaming agent, and hair conditioner made it a valuable addition to shampoos, conditioners, and body washes.

The production of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate involves a chemical reaction where oleic acid is first converted into its corresponding acyl chloride. This acyl chloride then reacts with sarcosine to form the sarcosinate. Finally, triethanolamine is added to neutralize the mixture, resulting in the formation of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate. This process ensures that the final product is both effective and safe for use in various cosmetic formulations.

The Benefits/Uses of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate

In this section, we will delve into the officially recognized cosmetic benefits and uses of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate:


Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate helps to reduce static electricity, which can be a common issue, especially in dry environments. This means that when used in hair care products, it can help to keep your hair smooth and manageable, preventing that annoying frizz and flyaway hair that can be caused by static buildup.


This ingredient is an effective cleansing agent, meaning it helps to remove dirt, oil, and impurities from the skin and hair. When included in shampoos, face washes, or body cleansers, Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate ensures that your skin and hair are left feeling clean and refreshed without stripping away essential natural oils.


Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate contributes to the foaming action of cosmetic products. This means that it helps to create a rich, luxurious lather when you use products like shampoos, body washes, or facial cleansers. A good foam can enhance the overall experience of using these products, making them feel more effective and enjoyable to use.

Hair Conditioning

As a hair conditioning agent, Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate helps to improve the texture and appearance of your hair. It can make your hair feel softer, smoother, and more manageable. This is particularly beneficial for those with dry or damaged hair, as it can help to restore some of the lost moisture and vitality.

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

Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate is generally considered safe for use in cosmetic products. It is well-tolerated by most skin types and is not known to be a common allergen. However, as with any ingredient, there are potential side effects that users should be aware of:

  • Skin irritation
  • Allergic reactions
  • Contact dermatitis

Regarding individuals who are pregnant or breastfeeding, data and research on the topical usage of Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate 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.

Adverse reactions to Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate are relatively uncommon, but it is always prudent to conduct a patch test before widespread usage to ensure that your skin does not react negatively to the ingredient.

In terms of comedogenicity, Tea-Oleoyl Sarcosinate is rated as a 1 on a scale of 0 (totally non-comedogenic) to 5 (highly comedogenic). This low rating indicates that it is unlikely to clog pores and is generally suitable for individuals prone to acne, blemishes, or breakouts.

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