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Salicylic Acid reacting differently from each manufacturer

Hi, I am very ignorant in the mysteries of chemistry and am attempting to find a supplier of salicylic acid for my home made glycerine soaps.  I have run batches with percentages from .5% to 2%.  

Between suppliers the end result is very different in;

  • strength: measured by the dryness experienced by those who used it
  • fragrance: (note my test batch soaps are un-fragranced. However the normal natural fragrance was changed by both suppliers in different ways.  For one supplier it seemed there was no longer any fragrance, for another it had a mild unpleasant chemical smell.
  • hardness: both suppliers created a harder dryer soap than without SA. One was harder than the other.
  • clarity:  Note that I only used clear soap in one test for one supplier.  Within a few days the clear soap was almost undistinguishable from a normal white soap (Titanium Dioxide is used for a whitener)

I will say that my soap is very finicky.  I have had suppliers change their sorbitol process/ingredient for example and it ruined batches of soap.  I am using the standard (non-pharmaceutical) SA. If anyone can tell me why different manufactures are behaving differently I would greatly appreciate it. 

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New Contributor

Re: Salicylic Acid reacting differently from each manufacturer

The differences in salicylic acid’s performance from various suppliers could be due to variations in purity, the presence of different impurities, or slight differences in the chemical composition. These factors can affect the strength, fragrance, hardness, and clarity of your soaps. It’s important to ensure that the salicylic acid you purchase meets the same specifications for your soap-making needs to achieve consistent results.


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