Neem as a preservative?

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Nov 19, 2013
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I know that neem should work as a natural preservative, but what % do I need in ex. a body butter without water if it's just for the shelf life? Or in a basic face cream with distilled water or aloe vera gel? Anyone who know how to calculate neem as a preservative?

I've a paw balm I made in 2011 with 50/50 neem/coco nut and beeswax and rosemary eo. Nothing else. It's still fresh, but is it just luck or is neem so effective?
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I would not use neem as a preservative. Unless you have your balm tested it might look fresh but there are many unseen nasties that could be lurking.
Thanks. I've not used it to preserve, but I'm impressed of my paw balm from april 2011. It,s stored in an aluminium jar and I've dipped my fingers in it many times, even between my dogs paws. It got me curious.

So I want to test it in a face cream, just as an experiment, to store in my bath room, leave it open, put my fingers into and see how long it will be fresh. But is it worth to try with a small, maybe just 10-15% neem? I can't find any articles about how to use it. Just some about neems preservative benefits.
Just because it looks and smells good to the naked eye and nose, doesn't mean that it's not swimming with microbes. If you have a microscope and know how to use it, you could use different % and do some tests.

In my opinion, there is no substitute for a proven, well-tested, efficacious preservative. Generally not "natural." Then again, MRSA and staph are "natural."

Your balm doesn't contain water. Assuming you didn't introduce water into it during use, I see no reason why it shouldn't still be good.
Thanks. Usually I use dehydroacetic acid together with antioxidants in lotions and creams with water or often dipped fingers into, but I will make some small neem face creams without now, just as an experiment and then have them tested IF they still look and smell good after a year. Until then, nothing else than antioxidants and dha is actual in my creams. Promise ;)
Dehydroacetic plus anti-oxidants is not enough to preserve a lotion/cream which contains water. (By the way, antioxidants do not guard against bacteria, fungus and mould so do not "preserve").

Adding a chelator such as EDTA will help your preservative, adding an anti-oxidant wont' I'm afraid.

You need a proper broad spectrum preservative. For a detailed list of preservatives with reviews incl those approved by Ecocert see -
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Yes, I agree and I do test my products, but I send them to a lab. Havn't know how to do it self, but will take a look at your link. Thanks.

I also know the different between antioxidants and preservatives I've been told here. And as I wrote in my first post I know neem have preservative benefits. What I'm not sure about is how well they really work but I will figure it out with tests. I also read all msds for my ingredients, just to know exactly what I have. As and example my neem for now have more than 3000 azdirachtin contents.

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