CosmoSurf® natural film forming polymers

Naturally derived film forming polymers


Water resistance with tuneable aesthetics


Multi-functional & formulation simplicity

Technology overview

CosmoSurf® polymers are made from natural and renewable starting materials. The polymers are not made using traditional free-radical based polymerization processes and are therefore free of residual vinyl-type monomers, initiators and catalysts.


CosmoSurf® polymers are excellent film forming polymers that provide up to 80 minutes of water resistance in emulsions and (alcohol based) spray products. CosmoSurf® is a flexible polymer platform, resulting in the ability to create and modify aesthetics, as well as adding on multiple benefits, such as pigment dispersion and avoiding ‘white-out’ upon application onto wet skin that is common for free-radical based film forming polymers.


Optical microscopy images show that TiO2 pigment in Caprylic/capric triglyceride forms large clusters and agglomerates. In the presence of CosmoSurf® polymers (in this particular CosmoSurf® DDG-20) the TiO2 clusters are broken up and a more uniform dispersion is achieved.

The effect of CosmoSurf® polymers on the white-out effect is demonstrated by applying two alcohol-based sunscreen onto wet skin.  When a traditional free-radical based film former is used the white out effect is clearly visible on the left side of the arm. When CosmoSurf® polymers are used as film former, the white-out effect does not occur (right side of the arm).

The multi-function character of CosmoSurf® polymers allows for the creation of simpler formulations as separate ingredients, such as aesthetic modifiers and dispersing aids can be eliminated.

Application and uses


Sun care lotions: Provide film formation, water resistance, homogeneous film formation on wet skin and pigment dispersion

Sun care sprays: Provide film formation, water resistance, homogeneous film formation on wet skin and mitigate dry feel of alcohol-based products

Skin care lotions: Provide film formation, water resistance, homogeneous film formation on wet skin and pigment dispersion

Product Line-up & selection guide


The table below gives an overview of the film forming polymers in the CosmoSurf® product line-up, with the main characteristics that help in selecting the right product for the application.

Formulation guidelines


General guidelines:

  • Recommended dosage: 2%
  • Max. processing temperature: 150˚C


Emulsion systems:

  • Add CosmoSurf® polymers to oil phase together with organic UV filters
  • Mineral systems: add CosmoSurf® polymers to oil phase with bulk of the oil phase ingredients, after mineral filter dispersion step has been completed
  • Emulsifiers:
    • There are no known incompatibilities of CosmoSurf® polymers with certain emulsifiers
    • Generally choosing the right emulsifier is important for overall sunscreen performance
    • Emulsifiers with too high of detergency activity may negatively impact water resistance performance – an example of recommended emulsifier is glyceryl monostearate


Alcohol (spray) systems:

  • Add CosmoSurf® polymers to the mixture of organic UV filters:
    • Combine all organic UV filters and heat to ~60˚C
    • When system is clear, add CosmoSurf® polymer
    • Upon cooling, add esters/oils and add alcohol

Benefits and claims in finished products


  • Very Water Resistance rating up to 80 minutes
  • Better aesthetics and feel
  • Green polymer derived from natural ingredients
  • No residual (vinyl-type) monomers, initiators and catalysts

Global compliance


CosmoSurf® polymers are globally compliant as cosmetic ingredient, except for China


CosmoSurf® CE-100: Octyldodecyl Citrate Crosspolymer


CosmoSurf® CE-140: Stearyl/Octyldodecyl Citrate Crosspolymer


CosmoSurf® CE-250: Benehyl/Octyldodecyl Citrate Crosspolymer


CosmoSurf® DDG 20: Bis-Octyldodecyl Dimer Dilinoleate/Propanediol Copolymer


CosmoSurf® DDG 28: Bis-Dodecylhexyldecyl Dimer Dilinoleate/Propanediol Copolymer


CosmoSurf® DGSi: Polysilicone-31


CosmoSurf® PG1-IS: Polyglyceryl-3 Stearate/Isostearate Dimer Dilinoleate Copolymer


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CosmoSurf® products are developed and produced by Surfatech Corp. Ultra is the supplier of CosmoSurf® in parts of the US and Canada.

Ultra Chemical Inc.

2 Bridge Avenue Suite 631

Red Bank, NJ 07701



Ultra Chemical BV

Zuidplein 36 - 1077

XV Amsterdam

The Netherlands