natural ingredients, Policosanol

Policosanol: Potential Adjunct in Anti-Acne formulations

Policosanol is a mixture of higher aliphatic alcohols extracted from plants such as sugarcane(saccharum officinarum) or yams or from beeswax. It is produced, promoted and researched extensively in Cuba. The extract appears as off white to yellow powder


Policosanol Chemical Composition –

The highest percentage of alcohol present in policosanol is 1-octacosanol, 1-dotriacontanol, 1-tetracosanol, 1-tetratria-contanol, 1-hexacosanol, 1-heptacosanol and 1-nonacosanol.

Policosanol : Cosmeceutical application

  • Topical application controls sebum level of skin and scalp.
  • Natural anti microbial ingredient in anti acne formulations
  • Increases blood circulation of skin and liven up the blood cell
  • Effective in some skin diseases and inflammations like eczema,acne,skin allergy etc.
  • Promotes hydration and softening of skin
  • New patented solvent free extraction process has low environment impact.

Policosanol: How it is effective in controlling acne?

  • When excessive secretion of sebum by sebaceous glands , alteration in sebaceous ducts occurs leading to their blockage.
  • Further encourages proliferation and accumulation of bacterium propionibacterium acnes.
  • Human sebaceous gland can synthesize cholestrol from acetate and metabolize to steroids into potent androgens. Acne is known to be an androgenic skin disorders. There for agents that beneficially effects cholestrol metabolism may have a potential role in management of acne.
  • Policosanol is found to inhibit cholestrol biosynthesis and favorably influence sebum level in the skin.

Plicosanol: Formulation and preparation

Policosanol is recommended for oily skin as it provides all the sebum control benefit. The O/W and W/O formulations for oily skin and acne prone skin.

It is oil soluble at raised temperature, so it must be added in the oil phase of the emulsion. It contains mixture of higher fatty alcohols, so it has a high melting point and may increase viscosity of O/W preparation specially lotions.

Formula with Policosanol as an active ingredient

Phase A

  1. Decyl Oleate)-5.7%
  2. Ethylhexyl Stearate)-6.5%
  3. Glyceryl Stearate-0.5%
  4. Stearic Acid-0.5%
  5. Policosanol-0.5

Phase B

  1. Cetearyl Glucoside-1.0%
  2. Creatine-0.5%
  3. Glycerin-3.0%
  4. Water-80.1%

Phase C

  1. Carbomer-0.2%
  2. Ethylhexyl Stearate-0.8%

Phase D

  1. NaOH (10%)-0.7%
  2. Preservative, parfum-q.s.

Preparation of Policosanol lotion

  • · Heat phase A and B separately to approx. 80°C.
  • · Add phase B to phase A without stirring.
  • · Homogenize.
  • · Cool with gentle stirring to approx. 60°C and add phase C.
  • · Homogenize for a short time (20s).
  • · Cool with gentle stirring and add phase D below 40°C.

Sugar cane Plant
Sugar cane Plant


Policosanol is known to support cardiovascular health and wellness.As a cosmeceutical, Policosanol is an effective natural approach in modulating sebum levels in the skin and scalp, a natural antimicrobial adjunct in anti-acne formulations, and a non-animal derived emollient – a potential substitute for wool-derived lanolin in cosmetic formulations.

Source: sabinsa

Phase A

(Decyl Oleate)


Ethylhexyl Stearate)


(Glyceryl Stearate


Stearic Acid




Phase B

Cetearyl Glucoside








Phase C



Ethylhexyl Stearate


Phase D

NaOH (10%)


Preservative, parfum