Measuring Moisture Content in Aerosols and Creams


Moisture content is an important parameter in aerosols and creams. Substances such as sunscreen, muscle ache creams, and anti-fungal treatments are considered to be over-the-counter medicines; therefore the composition of these substances is closely monitored. The composition of each batch must match what is registered according to Australian regulatory guidelines for OTC medicines.


An aerosol and cream manufacturer was setting up a new quality assurance lab to perform quality checks on their aerosols and creams. Because of the regulations, they needed to monitor the moisture content of their products. Research and development laboratory was also interested in measuring the water content of their samples at different stages in the formulation process.

HI903Hanna Instruments offered the HI903 Karl Fischer Volumetric Titrator for determination of water content from 100 ppm – 100%. The three samples the customer had an immediate need for were sunscreen, hand sanitizer, and muscle relaxing spray. The estimated water content of the sunscreen was 75%, the hand sanitizer was 30%, and the muscle relaxing spray was 15%. A titrant strength of 5 mg/mL was recommended as a result of these estimated values. Because the various creams being tested had some nonpolar fats and oils components, a methanol solvent with a cosolvent of hexanol was recommended. The customer valued that when the titrant was standardised each day, the standardised value was automatically updated in all of the methods. The customer also appreciated that the HI903 recommends an ideal sample size range for each titration based on the expected water content of the sample and the strength of the titrant. Because they are constantly formulating new products in R&D, they have to make new methods frequently and were pleased that the titrator can accommodate up to 100 methods and that the menu structure was user-friendly and intuitive.

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