Hydroxyethyl cellulose

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Hydroxyethyl cellulose
Hydroxyethyl cellulose.png
Other names
Cellulose, hydroxyethyl ether; hydroxyethylcellulose; 2-hydroxyethyl cellulose
9004-62-0 YesY
ChemSpider  N
Molar mass variable
Melting point 140 °C (284 °F; 413 K)
Safety data sheet MSDS
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
 N verify (what isYesY/N?)
Infobox references

Hydroxyethyl cellulose is a gelling and thickening agent derived from cellulose. It is widely used in cosmetics, cleaning solutions, and other household products.[1] Hydroxyethyl cellulose and methyl cellulose are frequently used with hydrophobic drugs in capsule formulations, to improve the drugs' dissolution in the gastrointestinal fluids. This process is known as hydrophilization.

Hydroxyethyl cellulose is the main ingredient in the lubricant KY Jelly. It is also a key ingredient in the formation of big bubbles as it possesses the ability to dissolve in water but also provide structural strength to the soap bubble.


  1. ^ Record in the Household Products Database of NLM