Glycerine / Glycerol - High Quality - Vegetable based Oil


SKU: RD10205

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High Quality General Reagent Grade Glycerine

Vegetable Glycerine / glycerol / glycerin is a colourless, viscous liquid. Glycerine has three hydrophilic hydroxyl groups that are responsible for its solubility in water and its hygroscopic nature. A very interesting property of vegetable glycerin is that it is very highly hygroscopic, which means that it absorbs water from the air. For example, if you leave a bottle of glycerine / glycerol exposed to air, it would eventually become 80% glycerin and 20% water. Up until the 19th Century, glycerin was mostly produced by the candle-making industry that made candles from animal fats at that time.

PLEASE NOTE: This product is not for human or animal consumption. 


Vegetable Glycerine / glycerol / glycerin is used in many cosmetic and personal care preparations. It improves smoothness and acts as a lubricant and humectant (moisturiser). It is used in soaps, creams, hair products, sprays and in water based personal lubricants.

Glycerine  soaps have become very popular with more and more people making their own. Apart from being relatively easy to make they allow makers to tailor the soap using their own additives, fragrances, essential oils, botanicals etc. Glycerine soap is excellent for those with sensitive skin and a great moisturiser.

Glycerine is a very effective antifreeze and a 70:30 glycerine : water will reduce the freezing point of water to -37°C. It does this by disputing the formation of ice crystals when temperatures fall below 0°C. Although not as effective as ethylene glycol or propylene glycol, Glycerine / Glycerol / glycerin offers a safer, non toxic option.

Glycerine will help prevent mirrors and glass from fogging or steaming up. Add a small amount to water and apply to surface and buff dry.

In organic synthesis, glycerine is used as a readily available prochiral building block.

Glycerine can also serve as a substitute for petroleum based products. Glycerine derived propylene glycol are substitutes for petroleum-based propylene.

Research laboratory usage:

Vegetable Glycerine / Glycerol / glycerin is a common component of solvents for enzymatic reagents stored at temperatures below zero degrees Celsius due to the depression of the freezing temperature of solutions with high concentrations of glycerine / glycerol / glycerin. It is also dissolved in water to reduce damage by ice crystals to laboratory organisms that are stored in frozen solutions, such as bacteria, nematodes, and fruit flies. Samples are loaded into agarose gel electrophoresis mixed in loading buffers that mainly consist of Glycerine / Glycerol / glycerin; when the sample is injected into wells, the Glycerine / Glycerol / glycerin causes the solution to sink through the running buffer to the bottom of the well.

Potential uses:

Some potential uses for vegetable Glycerine / Glycerol include the following:

  • Glycerine acetate (as a potential fuel additive)
  • Compost additive
  • For Tincture extraction and preservation of Essential oils and chemicals from herbs.
  • Citric acid production
  • Conversion to propylene glycol
  • Conversion to ethanol
  • Glycerine may be used as antifreeze for plants, if mixed with water in a 10% solution. It is believed to be effective at temperatures near -18C
  • Glycerine  may serve as a source of energy used in waste water treatment plant digesters
  • Glycerine is used in textiles to soften the yarn and to lubricate fibres of different kinds. In the textile industry.
  • To add flexibility to rubber and plastic.
  • As a building block in manufacturing flexible foams
  • An initiator to which ethylene oxide or propylene oxide are added In Paper and Printing -
  • It is used to soften and reduce the shrinkage during paper manufacturing. It is used in the  following: Grease proof paper, Food wrappers and Printing ink.


Preserving Tree Branches with Glycerine / Glycerol:

  1. Cut branches when colour begins to change, before the leaves are completely tinted. (Fully turned leaves are too dry and brittle.) Beech, oak, wild apple, mountain ash and copper beech are well suited for this method of preservation.
  2. Use a solution of 2 parts water to 1 part Glycerine. The amount needed depends on the size of the branches. (The stems must be in liquid to a depth of 3 to 4 inches.)
  3. Trim off any small twigs at the bottom of the branch. Slit the bottom of each stem with a sharp knife to 3 or so inches.
  4. Next, bruise the stalks with a hammer.
  5. Arrange the branches in a container of the water/glycerine mixture and place in a cool room for a week to ten days. The leaves will last for years! Makes great centrepieces and displays.


Vegetable Glycerine for use on Hair:

Glycerine / glycerol is excellent for hydrating the hair by locking moisture into the hair cuticles and helps produce better quality curls without frizzing. Its great for making afro hair soft and shiny. It is claimed that as glycerine make hair healthier it helps promote hair growth. Glycerine should never be used in its concentrated form as it will leave hair feeling very oily. Make up a solution by mixing glycerine / glycerol 50;50 with water in a spray bottle. Add a few drops of your favourite essential oils. Spray onto your hair after showering.


Vegetable Glycerine for use on Skin:

Vegetable glycerine can be used on the skin for many different skin issues and problems. Simply used as a moisturiser either on its own or mixed with jojoba oil it softens the skin and hydrates it. It helps skin cells to grow better and repair themselves when damaged. Other uses include as a treatment for insect bites and nettle stings to help reduce itching. Glycerine helps to reduce inflammation and bruising and reduces healing time of burns. It is also claimed that glycerine / glycerol kills bacteria by dehydrating them (drawing water from the cell walls).

    Properties of Glycerine:

    • Chemical Names: Glycerol, Glycerin, glycerine, 1, 2, 3 propane triol, Trihdroxy propane.
    • Description: Clear, colourless viscous liquid.
    • EINECS: 200-289-5
    • CAS No: 56-81-5
    • FORMULA: C3H8O3
    • Molecular weight: 92.09
    • Glycerine content: Min 99.5%
    • Specific gravity 25/25oC: Not less than 1.257
    • Boiling point: 290C
    • Melting point: 18.17C
    • Eutectic freezing point: -46.5C (67% solution of glycerine in water)
    • Flash point: 177C
    • Autoignition point: 523C
    • Refractive index: 1.471-1.474
    • Viscosity: 1.2-1.4 Pa.s
    • Specific heat:  0.5795 cal pr gm deg (26C)
    • Vapour Pressure: 0.0025 mm (50°C)
    • Heat of Combustion: 397.0 Kcal per mole
    • Surface Tension: 63.4 dynes cm (20°C)
    • Sound Transmission: 1923 m/sec (20°C)
    • Thermal Conductivity: 0.00069 1 cal cm deg/sec (0°C) 
    • Molar Heat of Solution: 1381 cal 
    • Dissociation Constant: 0.07 x 10-12 
    • Dielectric Constant: 42.48 (25°C) 
    • Specific Conductivity: 5.6 X 10-8 reciprocal ohms (11.7C) 
    • Compressibility: 21.1 X 10-6 cc per atm pr cc (28.5C)


    Click here to see an article on "Fun things to do with glycerine"


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