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Ingredients glossary

We’ve listed below in alphabetical order all the various functions our ingredients perform - from fragrances to preservatives, emulsifiers to solvents.

Use the letter links to easily navigate to each section.


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Removes dirt to leave surfaces clean or polished through rubbing/ brushing
Helps to absorb fluids like water or oil
Added to a product to improve one or more important properties
Helps bind surfaces to each other
Alkalinity Source
Increases the alkalinity of the product to help in the washing away of dirt.
Anti-redeposition Agent
Helps prevent the removed dirt in washing water from reattaching to a surface
Anticaking Agent
Helps to prevent the formation of lumps in the product.
Antidandruff Agent
Helps to relieve or control the symptoms of dandruff
Antifoaming Agent
Prevents excessive foam or bubbles forming when a product is used
Antimicrobial Agent
Helps to reduce the amount of bacteria on a surface or body (part)
Helps to prevent reactions promoted by oxygen in the product, which can cause product spoilage.
Antiperspirant Agent
Helps to reduce sweating
Antistatic Agent
Helps to make you hair, skin, clothes, kitchen ware or hard surfaces feel better by reducing static charge
Creates tightening or a tingling sensation on the skin


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Helps materials to bind or stick together
Bleach Catalyst
Boosts the performance of bleach to make it more effective at low temperatures
Bleach Precursor
Becomes a bleaching substance during washing
Ingredients from herbs, roots, flowers, fruits, leaves or seeds
Buffering Agent
Maintains the right acidity / alkalinity balance of a product
Reduces water hardness, makes cleaning products more effective
Bulking Agent
Diluant. Dilutes solids or liquids to allow for more accurate dosing


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Colours the product, your hair or skin
Cooling Agent
Provides a cool and fresh sensation
Corrosion Inhibitor
Prevents corrosion of packaging


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Changes the taste of a product to prevent ingestion. Typically used in alcohol-containing products.
Dye Transfer Inhibitor
Prevents colour rinsed out from clothes into wash water being deposited on to your other clothes during the wash


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Helps two or more liquids, that don't usually combine to form a single solution; often referred to as an 'emulsion'
Emulsion Stabiliser
Prevents a mixture from separating and helping to increase a product's shelf life
Boosts the cleaning properties of a product to help remove specific stains at lower temperatures e.g. fats, egg, blood.
Enzyme Stabiliser
Makes an enzyme last longer in liquid detergent


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Fabric Conditioner Agent
Helps to soften and improve the feel of a fabric
Film Former
Helps provide a smooth, consistent coverage when applied
Fixing Agent
Helps to maintain the hold of your hair style
Improves the taste of oral or lip care products, such as tooth paste or lip balm
Provides a distinctive, pleasant smell


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Hair - Shaping/Styling Agent
Helps you to style or straighten your hair
Hair Conditioning Agent
Helps to improve the gloss, sheen and texture of your hair
Helps to retain water in a product, in hair or the top layers of skin
Allows cleaning agents to be uniformly dispersed within a product.


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Makes the product appear more opaque or pearly
Optical Brightener
Provides additional brightness to the surface to which product is applied.
Oral Care Agent
Helps to clean, protect or remove/cover an unpleasant smell in the mouth/teeth/gums
Oxidising Agent
In laundry and household care products stains are removed by oxidation (bleaching).


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Helps to give products a shimmery appearance
pH Adjuster
Controls the acidity / alkalinity balance of products
Makes materials more flexible and resilient
This prolongs the shelf-life of the product, even once it has been opened, protecting it from bacteria, yeasts and moulds
Process by-product
A secondary component/ingredient which is created when making the product
A compressed gas that helps expel product from a can


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Helps prevent impurities from water from causing adverse effects on product performance, appearance, or stability.
Skin Conditioning Agent
Helps to make your skin feel soft, smooth and supple.
Skin Protectant
Helps to temporarily protect minor cuts, scrapes, burns or skin irritation
Slip Modifier
Helps a product spread more easily
Softness Extender
Makes a softening agent more effective and last longer
Helps an ingredient in the product dissolve better
Dissolves substances or ingredients
Stabilising Agent
Helps maintain the stability of a product's formulation, appearance and texture
Gives a product form or shape
Sunscreen Agent
Helps to protect the skin and filter out harmful UV rays
Surface Modifiers
Changes the look and feel of an object's surface in home care products
An ingredient which helps to clean or remove dirt and oil, creating foam when used with water
Suspending Agent
Helps keep solids separated and evenly dispersed within a product
Makes products taste sweeter


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Tablet Disintegrant
Helps tablets break up so the product works faster


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UV Absorber
Helps to protect the product formulation from UV rays


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Viscosity Controlling Agent
Controls the density or thickness of a product
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