Glyceryl Ricinoleate



Glyceryl Ricinoleate at a glance

  • Synthetic and/or plant-derived blend of glycerin and castor oil derivative
  • Has emollient, emulsifying and cleansing properties
  • Excellent for preventing moisture loss
  • Considered safe as used in cosmetics

Glyceryl Ricinoleate description

Glyceryl ricinoleate is a single ester (monoester) made from combining glycerin with ricinoleic acid, a fatty acid derived from castor seed oil. Although the latter part if plant-based, the source of glycerin may be synthetic, hence this ingredient is a hybrid. Of note, some suppliers offer an all-natural version, with the glycerin being vegetable-derived. It’s a versatile ingredient due to its emollient, emulsifying, and surfactant (cleansing) properties. As an emollient, its protectant properties help skin maintain surface hydration and can also add a wetter feel to moisturizers that may not otherwise feel as…well, moist. Use levels of glyceryl ricinoleate in cosmetics depend on its intended function. Amounts of 5–20% are common, with levels varying based on co-emulsifiers and partner emollients. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Board has examined the data of glyceryl ricinoleate and considers it safe in current practices of use.

Glyceryl Ricinoleate references

  • International Journal of Toxicology, May 2007, pages 147; and March 2004, pages 1–94
  • UL Prospector, Accessed August 2023

Peer-reviewed, substantiated scientific research is used to assess ingredients in this dictionary. Regulations regarding constraints, permitted concentration levels and availability vary by country and region.

Ingredient ratings


Proven and supported by independent studies. Outstanding active ingredient for most skin types or concerns.


Necessary to improve a formula's texture, stability, or penetration.


Generally non-irritating but may have aesthetic, stability, or other issues that limit its usefulness.


There is a likelihood of irritation. Risk increases when combined with other problematic ingredients.


May cause irritation, inflammation, dryness, etc. May offer benefit in some capability but overall, proven to do more harm than good.


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Not rated

We have not yet rated this ingredient because we have not had a chance to review the research on it.