Glycerin is a chemical compound that is also known as glycerol. It is a neutral, sweet tasting, colorless, thick liquid that can be freezed to a thick paste, and has a high boiling point as well. It can easily dissolve in water or alcohol but not in oils. But, there are many substances which will dissolve into glycerin than they will dissolve into water or alcohol. So, it can be said that glycerin is a good solvent.
A very interesting property of glycerin is that it is very highly hygroscopic, which means that it absorbs water froms the air. For example, if you leave a bottle of glycerin exposed to air, it would eventually become 80% glycerin and 20% water. Glycerol or glycerin is one of the most widely used ingredients in drugs and pharmaceuticals. Apart from drugs, there are other uses of glycerin as well. Read on to find out the most common uses of glycerin
Drugs - Glycerin is widely used to manufacture the following drugs.
- Ear infection remedies
- Cough remedies
Foods and Beverages - Glycerin is used to moisten, sweeten or preserve the following food and drinks:
- Soft drinks
- Meat and cheese
- Dry food
Cosmetics and Toiletries - Because of the non-toxic nature of glycerin, it is used in cosmetics and toiletries. It is used in the following products:
- Skin creams and lotions
- Pre-shaving lotions
- Make up
Tobacco - Glycerin is also used in tobacco to prevent the breaking and crumbling during the processing of cigarettes, etc. It also adds some kind of flavor to the chewing tobacco. It is widely used to manufacture cigarette filter tips as well.
Paper and Printing - It is used to soften and reduce the shrinkage during paper manufacturing. It is used in the following:
- Grease proof paper
- Food wrappers
- Printing ink
Textiles - Glycerin is used in textiles to soften the yarn and to lubricate fibres of different kinds. In the textile industry, glycerin is generally used for the following purposes:
- As a lubricant for food processing
- To manufacture resin coating
- To add flexibility to rubber and plastic
- As a building block in manufacturing flexible foams
- To manufacture dynamite
- To create component that is used in radios and neon lights
With such a diverse usage, we can easily conclude that glycerin is a highly versatile product that is used in various industries today.