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Application of Benzoic Acid in Cosmetics and Coatings Industry

Views: 3     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2024-04-16      Origin: Site


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Benzoic acid is an organic compound with the chemical formula C6H5COOH, which has a benzene ring structure and carboxyl functional group. Due to its unique chemical structure and properties, benzoic acid plays an important role in the cosmetics and coatings industry, and is widely used due to its multifunctionality.


In the cosmetics industry, benzoic acid and its derivatives (such as sodium benzoate) are mainly used as preservatives. They can effectively inhibit the growth of microorganisms, including bacteria, molds, and yeast, thereby extending the shelf life of products and protecting them from microbial contamination. Benzoic acid and its salts have good anti-corrosion effects under acidic conditions, and are widely used in various cosmetic formulas, such as skincare products, hair products, and oral care products, due to their safety and mildness.


In the paint industry, benzoic acid and its derivatives are also used as preservatives to prevent microbial contamination during storage and use of coatings. In addition, benzoic acid can also be used as a pigment reagent to improve the stability and dispersion of pigments, thereby improving the color and performance of coatings. Benzoic acid can also be used as a rust inhibitor to protect steel equipment from corrosion and extend its service life.


The multifunctionality of benzoic acid is also reflected in its application as a fixative. In the fragrance industry, benzoic acid can be used to maintain the flavor characteristics of products, and also as a fixative in essence, to increase the flavor durability of products. In addition, benzoic acid has also been applied in the pharmaceutical field, such as in the production of benzoic acid salicylic acid ointment for the treatment of skin fungal diseases and other superficial fungal infections.


In summary, benzoic acid and its derivatives are widely used in the cosmetics and coatings industry, and their various functions such as anti-corrosion, fragrance fixing, pigmentation, and rust prevention make them indispensable and important chemicals in these industries.


Chemical properties of benzoic acid


The molecular structure of benzoic acid is composed of a benzene ring and a carboxyl group (- COOH), with the chemical formula C6H5COOH. In this structure, the carboxyl group is directly connected to the carbon atom of the benzene ring, forming the simplest aromatic acid.


The physical properties of benzoic acid include its appearance, melting point, boiling point, density, and solubility. Benzoic acid usually appears as white, scaly or needle shaped crystals, with a special odor of benzene or formaldehyde. Its melting point is 122.13 ℃, boiling point is 249 ℃, and relative density is 1.2659 (at 15/4 ℃). Benzoic acid has a low solubility in water, but is easily soluble in organic solvents such as ethanol and ether.


In terms of chemical properties, benzoic acid is a weak acid with slightly stronger acidity than cyclohexane formic acid, which is attributed to the higher

electronegativity of sp2 hybridized carbon atoms on the benzene ring and weaker electron donating effect. Benzoic acid can undergo various chemical reactions, including reactions on carboxyl groups, such as transformation into salts, esters, acyl halides, amides, and anhydrides. In addition, electrophilic substitution reactions can occur on the benzene ring of benzoic acid, mainly resulting in meta substituted products. Benzoic acid can also generate benzyl alcohol through catalytic reduction reactions and undergo decarboxylation reactions under heating conditions to generate carbon dioxide.


The application of benzoic acid in cosmetics


The application of benzoic acid in cosmetics is mainly reflected in its role as a preservative. Due to its ability to effectively inhibit the growth of microorganisms, including bacteria and fungi, benzoic acid is widely used in various cosmetics and personal care products to ensure product safety and extend shelf life. In the formulation of skin care products, benzoic acid can help maintain product stability, prevent product spoilage caused by microbial contamination, and thus protect consumer health.


For hair care products, benzoic acid can also exert its anti-corrosion effect, protecting the product from microbial contamination. At the same time, due to its mild effect on the scalp, it can reduce irritation to sensitive scalp. In addition, benzoic acid can also synergize with other ingredients in hair care products, improving the user experience and effectiveness of the product, such as increasing its smoothness and glossiness.


It should be noted that although benzoic acid has the above advantages, its use also needs to comply with relevant regulations and safety standards to ensure consumer safety. In addition, different countries and regions may have different limits on the use of benzoic acid in cosmetics, so it is necessary to strictly comply with local laws and regulations in product development and manufacturing.


The application of benzoic acid in the paint industry


The application of benzoic acid in the paint industry is mainly reflected in its role as a preservative, as well as improving the durability and stability of coatings. Benzoic acid and its salts (such as sodium benzoate) are often used in combination with sodium nitrite to prepare anti flash rust agents due to their environmental friendliness and slow-release effects, thereby improving the anti-corrosion performance of coatings. The addition of benzoate can weaken the degree of flash rust and enhance the anti rust performance of the paint film. This is because the complex formed by benzoate ions and iron can form a dense passivation film, reducing the degree of rust.


In special coating formulations, the use of benzoic acid can improve the water and chemical resistance of the paint film, making it more suitable for specific application environments. For example, in water-based anti-corrosion coatings, the addition of ammonium benzoate and sodium benzoate can enhance the anti-corrosion effect of the paint film, especially under low pH conditions, where the corrosion inhibition effect of benzoate ions is more significant. In addition, benzoic acid can also be used as a coating additive. The introduction of alkyd resin can make the paint film dry quickly, while improving the gloss, hardness, and water resistance of the paint film.


Safety considerations for benzoic acid


Benzoic acid, as a common food additive and preservative, its safety has always been a focus of concern for consumers and researchers. Research has shown that benzoic acid does not pose a threat to human health under prescribed safe intake levels.


However, consumer concerns about benzoic acid mainly stem from concerns about its potential side effects and uncertainty about the potential impact of long-term intake.


The safety research of benzoic acid mainly focuses on its toxicological characteristics and its impact on the human body. According to toxicological studies, benzoic acid has a certain degree of irritation, but its irritation to the skin is relatively mild. Vapors can cause irritation to the upper respiratory tract, eyes, and skin. In animal experiments, the LD50 of benzoic acid is relatively high, indicating lower acute toxicity. In addition, benzoic acid and sodium benzoate can also be detected in normal human bodies, indicating that they can be metabolized normally by the human body at a certain dose.


However, consumers still have concerns about the safety of benzoic acid, especially its use in children and sensitive populations. Some studies suggest that benzoic acid and sodium benzoate may cause allergic reactions, and in some cases may even lead to skin inflammation or respiratory problems. In addition, research on the potential carcinogenicity of benzoic acid has also attracted public attention, although the current evidence is insufficient to support this view.


To ensure the safe use of benzoic acid, the following are some guidelines and recommendations:


Compliance with regulations: Follow the regulations and limit standards for the use of benzoic acid by local and international food safety agencies.


Moderate use: When using benzoic acid in food processing, it should be controlled below the safe intake to avoid excessive addition.


Label Description: Clearly indicate the presence of benzoic acid on the product label for consumers to make informed choices.


Sensitive population consideration: For individuals known to be sensitive to benzoic acid, alternative products without benzoic acid should be provided.


Safety training: Provide training to employees in the food processing and manufacturing industry on the safe use of benzoic acid to ensure they understand the correct handling and use methods.


Environmental Protection Issues of Benzoic Acid


Benzoic acid, as a chemical substance widely used in food, cosmetics, and industrial fields, has received widespread attention for its environmental impact and sustainability issues. The production and use of benzoic acid may have certain environmental impacts, including but not limited to wastewater discharge, air pollution, and solid waste generation. These issues may have adverse effects on aquatic ecosystems, air quality, and soil quality.


Environmental impact of benzoic acid:


Wastewater discharge: During the production process of benzoic acid, wastewater containing organic and inorganic substances may be generated. If discharged directly without proper treatment, it may cause pollution to the aquatic ecosystem.


Air pollution: The production and use of benzoic acid may produce volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can participate in atmospheric photochemical reactions and affect air quality.


Solid waste: The production process of benzoic acid may generate solid waste, which, if not properly treated, may cause pollution to soil and groundwater.


Exploration of sustainable alternatives:


Biobased benzoic acid derivatives: Through the synthesis of lignin based benzoic acid derivatives (LBADs), the use of biomass raw materials to produce benzoic acid can be explored, which helps reduce dependence on petrochemical resources and provides a greener and more environmentally friendly production pathway.


Electrochemical synthesis: Electrochemical synthesis provides a possible alternative to traditional chemical synthesis by synthesizing benzoic acid and its derivatives through electrochemical reduction reactions, which can be carried out under solvent-free conditions and reduce the production of by-products.


Green chemistry principles: Applying green chemistry principles in the production process of benzoic acid, such as using catalysts to reduce by-products, improving raw material utilization, and using renewable raw materials, can reduce the impact on the environment.


In order to reduce the impact of benzoic acid on the environment, a series of environmental protection measures need to be taken, including but not limited to:


Strengthen wastewater and exhaust gas treatment: Ensure that the wastewater and exhaust gas generated during the production process are effectively treated to meet emission standards.


Optimize production process: Through technological improvement and process optimization, reduce pollutant emissions during the production process.


Promote sustainable alternatives: Encourage research and use of bio based or electrochemically synthesized benzoic acid alternatives to reduce their impact on the environment.


Strengthen environmental supervision: Through the formulation and implementation of laws, regulations, and environmental standards, strengthen environmental supervision during the production and use of benzoic acid.


Market trends of benzoic acid


Market trends:


The global benzoic acid market is expected to continue to grow in the coming years. According to the data, the global benzoic acid market size reached 6.549 billion yuan in 2022, and it is predicted to reach 9.073 billion yuan by 2028, with an estimated compound annual growth rate of 5.68%. This indicates that the demand for benzoic acid in the market is gradually increasing, and the market outlook is optimistic.


In terms of price, according to the report, the monthly average price of benzoic acid in the Chinese market in 2022 was 9563.46 yuan/ton, a year-on-year increase of 29.36%, indicating strong market demand for benzoic acid and an upward trend in prices.


Supply and demand situation:


In terms of supply, the production technology of benzoic acid has been continuously optimized, improving production efficiency and product quality. Meanwhile, with the strengthening of environmental regulations, the environmental impact and sustainability issues in the production process have also received more attention, which may affect the supply situation. The safety of benzoic acid is monitored, and the dosage is strictly regulated, which may also lead to adjustments in the supply structure.


In terms of demand, the application of benzoic acid in multiple fields such as food, cosmetics, medicine, dyes, plastics, etc. has driven the growth of demand. Especially in the field of food preservatives and plasticizers, the demand for benzoic acid and its derivatives is stable and expected to increase. In addition to traditional applications in the production of sodium benzoate, benzoic acid is also used for the production of benzoate esters and for various other purposes, indicating that the demand field is expanding.


The impact of emerging markets and technologies:


The rise of emerging markets, such as some countries in Asia and South America, is becoming a new driving force for the growth of demand for benzoic acid. The economic growth and industrialization process in these regions provide new growth opportunities for the benzoic acid market.


The impact of technological progress on the benzoic acid industry is significant. The development of new production technologies and processes helps to improve the production efficiency and reduce costs of benzoic acid, while also helping to reduce environmental impacts during the production process. There is enormous room for improvement in the domestic benzoic acid industry, and the advancement of science and technology will drive a leap in production technology, which is positive for the development of the industry.




The importance of benzoic acid in the cosmetics and coatings industry is self-evident. As an effective preservative, it is widely used in cosmetics, helping to extend the shelf life of products and protect them from microbial contamination, ensuring consumer safety. In the paint industry, benzoic acid not only serves as a preservative to improve the corrosion resistance of coatings, but also as a pigment and fragrance fixing agent to improve the color and performance of coatings and increase the market competitiveness of products.


Looking ahead, the market for benzoic acid is expected to continue to grow. With the development of the global economy and population growth, especially in emerging markets, the demand for benzoic acid is expected to further increase. Technological innovation and improved production efficiency will help reduce costs, improve product quality, and the strengthening of environmental regulations will drive the industry towards more sustainable and environmentally friendly development. In addition, attention and research on the safety of benzoic acid will continue to drive the updating of its safety use standards and limits in various application fields, ensuring consumer health and environmental protection.


In the cosmetics industry, as consumers increasingly focus on the safety and naturalness of product ingredients, the use of benzoic acid may be subject to stricter regulation. Therefore, developing safer and more environmentally friendly alternatives to preservatives will become an important direction for industry development. In the paint industry, with the popularization of green building and sustainable development concepts, the demand for environmentally friendly coatings will continue to grow, which will encourage benzoic acid manufacturers to develop more efficient and environmentally friendly products.


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