Sorbitan Laurate


Cleansing Agent

No known benefits

Sorbitan Laurate at a glance

  • Works as a cleansing agent and emulsifier
  • Also used to enhance the overall texture of skin care products
  • May be naturally derived or synthetic
  • Deemed safe in the low amounts used in cosmetics

Sorbitan Laurate description

Sorbitan laurate is an ester of fatty acid lauric acid and portions of the sugar ingredient sorbitol. This ingredient works as a cleansing agent and emulsifier and may be naturally derived or synthetic. It can be used to enhance the overall texture of skin care formulas. Depending on how it’s sourced, sorbitan laurate comes in different physical forms as a raw material ranging from an oily liquid to hard waxy solid. Amounts above 5% are likely to cause skin irritation; however, sorbitan laurate is typically used as a supporting player in lower amounts (up to 3%), along with other cleansing agents. As such, it’s considered a safe ingredient for use on skin. This ingredient also happens to be a food additive, a testament to its safety when used topically.

Sorbitan Laurate references

  • PubChem, Accessed August 2021, ePublication
  • International Journal of Toxicology, 2019, pages 60S-80S
  • Dermatitis, July-August 2008, pages E22-E23

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