The material selection platform
Cosmetics Ingredients
The material selection platform
Cosmetics Ingredients


CAS Number 68-04-2 / 6132-04-3
Chem/IUPAC Name: Trisodium;2-hydroxypropane-1,2,3-tricarboxylate
EINECS/ELINCS No: 200-675-3
COSING REF No: 37816
Sodium citrate acts as a buffering agent in cosmetics products to control their pH level. It can also be used as a preservative. It is used in various cosmetic products, including baby products, make-up, bath products, hair dyes and colors and skin care products.

What is SODIUM CITRATE used for?

Sodium citrate serves as a preservative to ensure safe and durable products by inhibiting microbial growth. It also assists in the regulation of pH of cosmetic formulations.
  • Skin care: The pH of a product is established and maintained by sodium citrate. While the skin's normal pH is slightly acidic, typically between 4.75 and 5.5, which effectively protects the skin from environmental factors such as allergens, pollutants, and bacteria, sodium citrate can buffer solutions in the pH range of about 3 to 6.2.

    The skin's acidity can change as a result of everything that comes into contact with it, including cosmetics, the sun, water, pollution, etc. This ultimately hinders the skin's capacity to defend itself. In order to maintain the skin's normal pH as closely as possible, it is crucial to balance the pH of cosmetics and skincare products. A highly acidic product may irritate the skin, and a highly alkaline one may decrease its lipid contents. By using an ingredient like sodium citrate, cosmetic manufacturers can adjust the pH of their formulations, resulting in a product that is better suited to the skin


Citrus fruits can be used to extract citric acid, but more than 99% of the citric acid consumed worldwide is produced through microbial fermentation. Citric acid is produced on an industrial scale by mycologically fermenting crude sugar stocks like molasses using Aspergillus niger strains. The citrate salts are created using the same fermentation method; they are simply crystallized when the proper alkaline solutions are present. For instance, crystallizing citric acid with sodium hydroxide results in the production of sodium citrate.

What does SODIUM CITRATE do in a formulation?

  • Buffering
  • Chelating
  • Preservative

Safety profile

The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel has reviewed scientific literature and data on the safety of citric acid and its esters and salts, like sodium citrate. Their findings showed that citric acid, its esters, and salts did not irritate the eyes or cause skin irritation or allergic skin reactions at concentrations used in cosmetics and skincare products. In light of the available scientific evidence, the Expert Panel came to the conclusion that citric acid, its esters, and salts were safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products under the circumstances at hand.

Technical profile

Property Values
Melting Point >300°C
pH ~8.0
Solubility Soluble in water

Commercial Selection : Grades containing solely SODIUM CITRATE

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