With the winter solstice past and days starting to get longer, who can blame us if our minds turn to sun-drenched days and hours of outdoors activities? In fact, this is a great time to be thinking of product formulations that help protect us from the sun and sunflower wax is the perfect ingredient to highlight as it brings ideal structure to skin care and sunscreen sticks.

Sunflower Wax – Natural, Renewable, and Compatible

Sunflower wax is a natural, renewable wax that demonstrates superior gel strength in a wide range of compounds. The height of practicality, sunflower wax gives your systems the benefits of both consumer-positive provenance and stability.

Sunflower wax is compatible with many different oil mediums, producing consistent hard gel structures across a broad range of compounds. The monoesters in sunflower wax are easily solubilized in oils at elevated temperatures, then, as they cool, precipitate out of the oil, forming a solid three-dimensional network.

The wax crystallinity and narrow melt point are critical properties that contribute to gel formation in anhydrous products. As seen in the graph below, the structural strength imparted by the sunflower wax is both consistent and effective across the range of oils.

Sunflower Wax - Get Strength in Different Oil Mediums

Sun Drenched Koster Keunen Formulations Featuring Sunflower Wax

Our Friends of the Sea Mineral Sunscreen Stick uses Sunflower Wax to its best advantage, combined with Sustainable Beeswax and Cocoa Butter to form a stable stick with good structure, a pleasant texture and smooth glide. It combines the convenience of a stick sunscreen with natural ingredients, forming a product that is reef-friendly and doesn’t whiten on the skin.

Formula: #10/20-421/258/358-7

Ingredient Trade Name INCI Name %
Phase A
Beeswax1 Beeswax 12.0
AR Cocoa Butter1 Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter 9.0
Sunflower Wax1 Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Wax 10.0
Kester Wax K-60P1 Polyhydroxystearic Acid 6.0
Kester Wax K-241 Lauryl Laurate 9.0
Extra Virgin Coconut Oil2 Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil 23.5
Vitamin E Acetate3 Tocopherol Acetate 1.0
UV Cut ZnO-68-CG4 Zinc Oxide, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polyhydroxystearic Acid 29.5

In our Sunny All Day Sunscreen Stick, Sunflower Wax blends with Sustainable Beeswax and Kester Wax K-24 to offer a formula in a stable, no-melt stick. These ingredients combine to provide structural and emollient properties that make it easy to apply, with a pleasant feel and good slip, in addition to a non-greasy after-feel.

Formula: #10/20-258/421/358-3

Ingredient Trade Name INCI Name %
Phase A
Sunflower Wax1 Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Wax 18.0
Beeswax1 Beeswax 8.0
Kester Wax K-241 Lauryl Laurate 8.0
Escalol HMS2 Homosalate 10.0
Escalol 5972 Octocrylene 10.0
Escalol 5172 Butyl Methoxydibenzylmethane 3.0
Escalol 5872 Ethylhexyl Salicylate 5.0
Jeechem TN3 C12-C15 Alkyl Benzoate 10.0
Jeechem CTG3 Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride 10.0
Carnation White Mineral Oil4 Mineral Oil 18.0

Are you Prepared for Summer?

Whether you are considering the upcoming sun season or personal care products for year-round use, take a look at the sustainable ingredient science available from Koster Keunen, including our sunflower wax studies. If you have formulation questions, our chemists are here to help you find solutions that work for you and your customers. Contact us to start a conversation.

About Koster Keunen

Koster Keunen has been working with wax since 1852 and has used our extensive experience and knowledge base to continuously develop new chemistries. Whether you are developing a new product, or need help with a reformulation or replacement, contact us to learn more about how we source, refine or develop waxes so you can create the perfect formula.