Microcrystalline Wax is a specific type of wax produced by de-oiling petroleum. It is used in cosmetics and beauty products as a viscosity agent, binder and emollient, and is often considered an alternative to paraffin wax. Unlike paraffin wax, Microcrystalline Wax has fine crystals, and is generally darker, more viscous, denser, tackier and more elastic than paraffin waxes. It has elastic and adhesive characteristics, which are related to its non-straight chain components. Microcrystalline Wax's crystal structure is small and thin, making these waxes more flexible than paraffin wax as well, according to Wikipedia,“The fine crystal structure also enables microcrystalline wax to bind solvents or oil, preventing the sweating-out of compositions,” according to the International Group Inc the preeminent manufacturer of Microcrystalline Waxes.
Microcrystalline Wax is seen in a variety of cosmetics and beauty products for the following uses: Creams and Lotions as a viscosity builder and emollient; Waterproof Mascara as a water repelling agent; Eyeliner pencils as a structure formation agent; Pressed powder as a binder to add softness; Lipsticks for structure formation; Hair Care as an ingredient in styling waxes