What is stearic acid used for?

If you’re a foodie, chef-in-training, or just plain curious about the chemical composition of everyday items (aren’t we all?), chances are you’ve come across stearic acid. This naturally-occurring fatty acid has more uses than a Swiss Army knife at a campsite – and here’s why.

But first, what IS stearic acid?

Stearic acid is one of many fatty acids that occur in various plants and animals. It’s most commonly found in animal fat, like beef and mutton tallow as well as cocoa butter which might sound gross to some people but hey we’re not judging. Don’t worry vegans – it also occurs in vegetable fats such as coconut oil! Its molecular formula is C18H36O2 making it pretty complex for us mere mortals.

But hold up – before you start worrying about putting “acid” on your skin or ingesting this compound with your vegan curry dish, don’t fret because stearic acid isn’t actually an “acid” in the way that hydrochloric… dangerous to humans/animals alone due its low pH level;. Or sulphuric.. scary lashings of orange smoke anyone? Yikes!

Here are 5 unexpected uses for Stearic Acid:

  1. A meat preservative

Who would’ve thought something so benign sounding could extend the shelf life of raw meat? In fact it’s antimicrobial property attacks bacteria on fresh cuts leaving them fresher longer so supermarket shelves can quite happily stock those lovely juicy sirloins without fear they’ll go wobbly.
2. Making Candles

If mood lighting floats your boat then listen up: Stearic Acid helps candles burn slowly by increasing their melting point helping wax withstand heat pressure . Plus unlike soy wax candles which let off kinder chemicals released during combustion , paraffin wax candles made with stearic acid contain their harmful vapors, ensuring a not so romantic experience to say the least

  1. As an emulsifier

For those of you who don’t know your cream from your milk or don’t even care because they’re lactose intolerant – here’s one for everyone: Stearic Acid helps bind ingredients together that normally wouldn’t cooperate. In industrial ice-cream production, it is most commonly used as an emulsifying agent to prepare our favorite flavors like Butter pecanand Mango sorbet.

  1. In cosmetics and self-care products,

Many face creams on the market turn to this fatty alternative when needing something that regulates viscosity (that’s thickness). Due to having unique makeup though it also boasts other benefits such as moisturizing skin and conditioning hairso if shiny locks are what you’re after go huntingfor shampoos containing this little beauty!

  1. As a textile softener

From sheets we can snuggle into for hours to clothes that keep us looking cool in tropical climates, stearic acid has carefully crept its way into the world of fabric manufacturing by softly coating fibers during production guaranteeing lovely touchably nuzzly textiles until laundry day!

Bonus Round:

It might only be five ways but let’s take time out just for funto delve deeper into some humourous misconceptions of this helpful all royal fat:
– It isn’t related at all to sulfuric or hydrochloric acids – no sudden blasts anywhere
– Don’t be frightened Its name means actually “unappetising tallow” which doesn’t sound very unappetizing does it?
– This versatile compound has more cousins than Angelina Jolie including oleic and linoleicoil acids which would make great trivia questions

– If on company payrolls I’d bet my house unfortunately eating many bars of stearic filled milk chocolate bars wouldn’t translate into a slicker smoother toned waistline (sorry!)

Wrapping up

So there you have it, folks. Stearic acid may be one of the less well-known fatty acids out there but is undeniably one versatile cat, with numerous industrial and consumer applications – for both meat lovers and vegans alike!

Writing this article was getting to me – think now it’s time I grab a candlelit bath using those moonflower petals with stearic acid for that extra-touchable soak.

FYI- This helps give your favourite chocolate bars their signature snap
If however on company payrolls I’d suggest reading further
Never trust any supermarket selling wobbly beef or lamb
No offense meant to non-nut eaters
Coconut derivatives are part of my beauty regime

And get creative – products include T-Shirts coated in certified organic stearate softeners!!
Personally sweat easy so cotton bed sheets and clothing would greatly benefit here!!!
Not recommended levels though.
Can also apparently help lubricate equipment in pharmaceutical production as well but let’s not go nutty shall we?

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