Wool wax is a form of wax secreted by the sebaceous glands of animals, which bear wool such as sheep. Wool wax is also known as lanolin or wool grease. Wool wax alcohol is obtained upon the hydrolysis of wool wax. Wool wax alcohol is used as surface active agent primarily in cosmetic and personal care products. Among cosmetic products, it is widely used in nourishing and skin smoothening creams.
Wool wax has been known as an excellent emollient since ancient times. Initially, wool washings were poured from a height, which led to the formation of froth of wool wax. This would then be skimmed out easily. Later, the technique of acid cracking was adopted. The technique would destabilize and separate the wax into a sludge form so that it could be easily filtered out. Eventually, the technique of centrifugal separation was put into practice and is being followed since then. The composition of wool wax alcohol is triterpene alcohols and sterols such as agnosterol, lanosterol, cholesterol, and some of their derivatives.
Wool Wax Alcohol Market: Trends
The perpetual rise in demand for wool wax alcohol in cosmetic products is expected to drive the market in the near future. Wool wax is derived from the sebaceous glands of animals; thus, it is physiologically much similar and compatible with the human skin. Wool wax alcohol is used as an emulsifier in hair and face bleaching agents since its activity remains stable across a wide range of pH. Of late, wool wax alcohol has been employed in pharmaceuticals and industrial products. Demand for wool wax alcohol is expected to rise in the near future. This is anticipated to be a major factor driving the wool wax alcohol market.
However, certain cases of wool wax alcohol allergies have been noted. This could potentially hamper the growth of the market. The prices of raw materials used in the manufacture of wool wax alcohol have been fluctuating. This is estimated to adversely affect the market. Furthermore, the United States’ Food and Drug Administration’s regulations over the use of wool wax alcohol in cosmetics and drugs has been a rising concern among the manufacturers of wool wax alcohol. Developments and advancements in the formulations of wool wax alcohol for better customer acceptability are projected to offer immense growth opportunities for market players.
Wool Wax Alcohol Market: Region-wise Outlook
The market for wool wax alcohol has reached the stage of maturity in Asia Pacific. It is likely to expand at a faster rate in the near future as well. In terms of demand, China accounted for the major share of the wool wax alcohol market in 2015. Demand for cosmetics has been increasing in South Korea, Southeast Asia, and India. Changes in lifestyle and increase in spending power are the primary factors driving the wool wax alcohol market in the region. In terms of demand and consumption, Asia Pacific was followed by Europe and North America. Demand for wool wax alcohol was high in the U.S. in North America in 2015 due to its increased usage in personal care and cosmetic products. The wool wax alcohol market in countries such as Germany, the U.K., and Italy in Europe has been expanding significantly since the last few years. This trend is expected to catch up in other countries in the region owing to the rise in usage of wool wax in cosmetics.
The wool wax alcohol market in Middle East & Africa and Latin America is anticipated to expand significantly in the near future as the personal care and pharmaceuticals sector in the region is witnessing consistent growth in recent years.
Wool Wax Alcohol Market: Key Players
Companies operating in the wool wax alcohol market include Suru Chemicals, NK Ingredients Pte Ltd., and Gustav Heess GmbH.