Calcium stearate
Preferred IUPAC name
Calcium di(octadecanoate)
Other names
  • 1592-23-0 checkY
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.014.976 Edit this at Wikidata
  • InChI=1S/2C18H36O2.Ca/c2*1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17-18(19)20;/h2*2-17H2,1H3,(H,19,20);/q;;+2/p-2 checkY
  • InChI=1/2C18H36O2.Ca/c2*1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17-18(19)20;/h2*2-17H2,1H3,(H,19,20);/q;;+2/p-2
Molar mass 607.030 g·mol−1
Appearance white to yellowish-white powder
Density 1.08 g/cm3
Melting point 155 °C (311 °F; 428 K)
0.004 g/100 mL (15 °C)
Solubility soluble in hot pyridine
slightly soluble in oil
insoluble in alcohol, ether
NFPA 704 (fire diamond)
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Infobox references

Calcium stearate is a carboxylate of calcium, classified as a calcium soap. It is a component of some lubricants, surfactants, as well as many foodstuffs. It is a white waxy powder.[1]

Production and occurrence

Calcium stearate is produced by heating stearic acid and calcium oxide:

2 C17H35COOH + CaO → (C17H35COO)2Ca + H2O

It is also the main component of soap scum, a white solid that forms when soap is mixed with hard water. Unlike soaps containing sodium and potassium, calcium stearate is insoluble in water and does not lather well.[2] Commercially it is sold as a 50% dispersion in water or as a spray dried powder. As a food additive it is known by the generic E number E470.


Calcium stearate is a waxy material with low solubility in water, unlike traditional sodium and potassium soaps. It is also easy and cheap to produce, and exhibits low toxicity. These attributes are the basis of many of its applications. Related applications exist for the magnesium stearate.[1]


  1. ^ a b Nora A, Szczepanek A, Koenen G (2001). "Metallic Soaps". Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. doi:10.1002/14356007.a16_361. ISBN 3527306730.
  2. ^ Weingärtner H, Franck EU, Wiegand G, Dahmen N, Schwedt G, Frimmel FH, Gordalla BC, Johannsen K, Summers RS, Höll W, Jekel M, Gimbel R, Rautenbach R, Glaze WH (2000). "Water". Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. doi:10.1002/14356007.a28_001. ISBN 3527306730.
  3. ^ Preventing Efflorescence, Portland Cement Association
  4. ^ US 5527383 
  5. ^ Lück E, von Rymon Lipinski GW (2000). "Foods, 3. Food Additives". Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. doi:10.1002/14356007.a11_561. ISBN 3527306730.