Stearic acid is a saturated fatty acid, promotes the emulsification process and improves the stability and shelf life of emulsions. It is mainly used in cosmetics to increase or decrease the viscosity of products. Stearic acid also has a nourishing and refatting effect and can protect the skin from environmental stress. Stearic acid has a surfactant-cleansing effect, which is used in washing-active substances, such as for cleaning skin, hair and/or teeth. Due to its surfactant-emulsifying effect, stearic acid is an important ingredient in shampoos, shower gels and soaps. Stearic acid is also often used as a consistency agent.