The ester of stearic acid and sucrose (sugar), sucrose stearate works in cosmetics as an emollient, emulsifier, and cleansing agent. It can be animal-, plant-derived or synthetic, with the plant-derived version being most common.
Sucrose stearate is considered safe as used in cosmetics and has been shown to help enhance the effectiveness of other ingredients.
References for this information:
European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, September 2011, pages 58-67
Pharmaceutics, May 2011, pages 275-306
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