Surfactants Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 – 2024)

The market is segmented by Type (Anionic Surfactants, Cationic Surfactants, Non-ionic Surfactants, Amphoteric Surfactants, and Silicone Surfactants), Origin (Synthetic Surfactants and Bio-based Surfactants), Application (Household Soap and Detergent, Personal Care, Lubricants and Fuel Additives, Industry and Institutional Cleaning, Food Processing, Oilfield Chemicals, Agricultural Chemicals, Textile Processing, and Other Applications), and Geography.

Market Snapshot

surfactants market
Study Period:


Base Year:


Fastest Growing Market:

Asia Pacific

Largest Market:

Asia Pacific

Key Players:

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Surfactants Market

The surfactants market is anticipated to register a CAGR of 4.25% by revenue during the forecast period (2019-2024). One of the major factors driving the growth of the market is the growth of the Asia-Pacific personal care industry. The expanding application base of bio-based and speciality surfactants is further expected to add to the market.

  • Household soap and detergent is the largest application for surfactants in terms of volume. Surfactants are used as ingredients in a variety of products in the personal care segment, such as foaming agents, dispersants, emulsifiers, solubilizing agents, cleansers, and conditioners, among others. The personal care industry accounted for a healthy share of the global market, in 2018, thereby augmenting the growth of the market.
  • Environmental issues address certain key concerns that include toxicity, biodegradability, eutrophication, and lifecycle analysis. One of the biggest challenges faced by the surfactants industry is the level of the environmental effect caused by the use of its various products, like detergents. This is likely to hinder the market growth.
  • As the demand for speciality surfactants is growing rapidly in various applications, the market for speciality surfactants is projected to increase drastically during the forecast period, thus providing opportunities for innovations in application-specific products.

Scope of the Report

The surfactants market report includes:

Anionic Surfactants
Linear Alkylbenzene Sulfolane (LAS or LABS)
Alcohol Ethoxy Sulfates (AES)
Alpha Olefin Sulfonates (AOS)
Secondary Alkane Sulfonate (SAS)
Methyl Ester Sulfonates (MES)
Cationic Surfactants
Quaternary Ammonium Compounds
Non-ionic Surfactants
Alcohol Ethoxylates
Ethoxylated Alkyl-phenols
Fatty Acid Esters
Amphoteric Surfactants
Silicone Surfactants
Other Types
Synthetic Surfactants
Bio-based Surfactants
Chemically Synthesized Bio-based Surfactants
Sucrose Ester
Alkyl Polyglycoside
Fatty Acid Glucamide
Sorbitan Ester
Bio Surfactant
Fatty Acid, Phospholipid, Neutral Lipid
Polymeric Bio Surfactant
Household Soap and Detergent
Personal Care
Lubricants and Fuel Additives
Industry and Institutional Cleaning
Food Processing
Oilfield Chemicals
Agricultural Chemicals
Textile Processing
Emulsion Polymerization
Other Applications
Rest of Asia-Pacific
North America
United States
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South America
Rest of South America
Middle East & Africa
Saudi Arabia
South Africa
Rest of Middle East & Africa

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Key Market Trends

Increasing Demand from the Household Soap and Detergent Application

  • Detergent is usually a mixture of surfactants, used mainly for the purpose of cleaning, and is available in varying dilutions. Detergents consist of alkylbenzenesulfonates, which have chemical properties similar to soap, but with higher solubility in hard water.
  • Detergents are classified in terms of their ionic properties, namely, anionic, cationic, and non-ionic. The soap mentioned in the segmentation deals mainly with washing and laundry application.
  • The surfactants incorporated in detergents and soaps mix with water, and attach themselves with the dirt on clothes and other cleaning surfaces. This helps reduce the surface tension and removes the dirt from the concerned surface.
  • Asia-Pacific holds the dominant position in the market, and is closely followed by North America. In Asia-Pacific, China and India are two of the largest consumers.
  • All the aforementioned factors are expected to drive the global market, during the forecast period.
surfactants market

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Asia-Pacific to Dominate the Market

In Asia-Pacific, China was the largest consumer of surfactants in 2018, and the country is likely to continue its dominance during the forecast period. The market for soap, washing powder, and synthetic detergent industry in China has grown at an average annual rate of 13.2% in the past five years, due to increasing awareness about hygiene and development in liquid soap. The food processing industry is expected to expand at a lucrative rate in the Chinese surfactants market, due to the increasing population, coupled with rising regulations for healthy food. China is becoming the largest market in terms of cosmetics and skin care products, globally. Beauty sector in the country has witnessed a growth of around 5% in the past 10 years. Today, India is the one of the largest producers of soaps in the world. The per capita consumption of toilet/bathing soap in the country is around 800 grams. Around 65% of the Indian population resides in rural areas, and the increasing disposable incomes and growth in rural markets are making the consumers shift to premium products. This shift is expected to drive the market for surfactants in the country.

surfactants market

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Competitive Landscape

The surfactants market is highly fragmented, with the top five companies accounting for almost 15% of the market. Key players in the surfactants market include 3M Company, Akzo Nobel NV, Arkema, Ashland, BASF SE, Clariant, Evonik Industries AG, Reliance Industries Ltd, and Solvay, among others.

Major Players

  1. Nouryon
  2. Evonik Industries AG
  3. Kao Corporation
  4. BASF SE
  5. Stepan Company

* Complete list of players covered available in the table of contents below

surfactants market

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Deliverables

    2. 1.2 Study Assumptions

    3. 1.3 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Drivers

      1. 4.1.1 Growing Personal Care Industry in Asia-Pacific

      2. 4.1.2 Increased Shale Gas Production Augmenting the Demand for Synthetic Surfactants

      3. 4.1.3 Growth of the Oleo Chemicals Market Driving the Demand for Bio-based Surfactants

    2. 4.2 Restraints

      1. 4.2.1 Increasing Focus on Environmental Regulations

      2. 4.2.2 Other Restraints

    3. 4.3 Industry Value Chain Analysis

    4. 4.4 Porters Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers

      3. 4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products and Services

      5. 4.4.5 Degree of Competition

    5. 4.5 Patent Analysis


    1. 5.1 Type

      1. 5.1.1 Anionic Surfactants

        1. Linear Alkylbenzene Sulfolane (LAS or LABS)

        2. Alcohol Ethoxy Sulfates (AES)

        3. Alpha Olefin Sulfonates (AOS)

        4. Secondary Alkane Sulfonate (SAS)

        5. Methyl Ester Sulfonates (MES)

        6. Sulfosuccinates

        7. Others

      2. 5.1.2 Cationic Surfactants

        1. Quaternary Ammonium Compounds

        2. Others

      3. 5.1.3 Non-ionic Surfactants

        1. Alcohol Ethoxylates

        2. Ethoxylated Alkyl-phenols

        3. Fatty Acid Esters

        4. Others

      4. 5.1.4 Amphoteric Surfactants

      5. 5.1.5 Silicone Surfactants

      6. 5.1.6 Other Types

    2. 5.2 Origin

      1. 5.2.1 Synthetic Surfactants

      2. 5.2.2 Bio-based Surfactants

        1. Chemically Synthesized Bio-based Surfactants

          1. Sucrose Ester

          2. Alkyl Polyglycoside

          3. Fatty Acid Glucamide

          4. Sorbitan Ester

          5. Others

        2. Bio Surfactant

          1. Glycolipid

          2. Fatty Acid, Phospholipid, Neutral Lipid

          3. Lipopeptide

          4. Polymeric Bio Surfactant

    3. 5.3 Application

      1. 5.3.1 Household Soap and Detergent

      2. 5.3.2 Personal Care

      3. 5.3.3 Lubricants and Fuel Additives

      4. 5.3.4 Industry and Institutional Cleaning

      5. 5.3.5 Food Processing

      6. 5.3.6 Oilfield Chemicals

      7. 5.3.7 Agricultural Chemicals

      8. 5.3.8 Textile Processing

      9. 5.3.9 Emulsion Polymerization

      10. 5.3.10 Other Applications

    4. 5.4 Geography

      1. 5.4.1 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      2. 5.4.2 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

      3. 5.4.3 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. United Kingdom

        3. Italy

        4. France

        5. Rest of Europe

      4. 5.4.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.4.5 Middle East & Africa

        1. Saudi Arabia

        2. South Africa

        3. Rest of Middle East & Africa


    1. 6.1 Mergers and Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Collaborations, and Agreements

    2. 6.2 Market Share Analysis**

    3. 6.3 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 3M

      2. 6.4.2 Arkema

      3. 6.4.3 Ashland

      4. 6.4.4 BASF SE

      5. 6.4.5 Bayer AG

      6. 6.4.6 CEPSA

      7. 6.4.7 Clariant

      8. 6.4.8 Croda International PLC

      9. 6.4.9 DETEN QUÍMICA SA

      10. 6.4.10 DowDuPont Inc.

      11. 6.4.11 Emery Oleochemicals

      12. 6.4.12 Evonik Industries AG

      13. 6.4.13 Galaxy Surfactants

      14. 6.4.14 Geo Specialty Chemicals

      15. 6.4.15 Godrej Industries Limited

      16. 6.4.16 Huntsman International LLC

      17. 6.4.17 Innospec

      18. 6.4.18 Kao Corporation

      19. 6.4.19 KLK Oleo

      20. 6.4.20 Lankem

      21. 6.4.21 Lonza

      22. 6.4.22 Nouryon

      23. 6.4.23 Oxiteno

      24. 6.4.24 P&G Chemicals

      25. 6.4.25 Reliance Industries Ltd

      26. 6.4.26 Sanyo Chemical Industries Ltd

      27. 6.4.27 Sasol

      28. 6.4.28 Sinopec Jinling Petrochemical Co. Ltd

      29. 6.4.29 Solvay

      30. 6.4.30 Stepan Company

      31. 6.4.31 Sulfatrade SA

      32. 6.4.32 Sumitomo Chemical Co. Ltd

      33. 6.4.33 Taiwan NJC Corporation Ltd

      34. 6.4.34 TENSAC

      35. 6.4.35 YPF SA

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Opportunities

      1. 7.1.1 Possible Innovations in the Applications of Specialty Surfactants

      2. 7.1.2 Expansion of Application Base for Bio Surfactants

    2. 7.2 Future of the Market

**Subject to Availability

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