Cellulose ether thickeners have always been one of the most important rheological additives for waterborne coating, hydroxyethyl cellulose ether (HEC) being the most widely used among them.

Hydroxy Ethyl Methyl Cellulose

Hydroxy Ethyl Methyl Cellulose

MHEC have the function of thickening and water retention, also can improve workability, and be used in dry and wet mortar products.

MHEC(Hydroxy Ethyl Methyl Cellulose)is widely used in water-based latex paintings, building construction and building materials, printing inks, oil drilling, etc.,

Matecel® MHEC Features:

Excellent water retention:

Excellent water retention:

can prevent the moisture from penetrating too quickly into the base surface, so that more moisture stays in the raw material

The proper opening time:

The proper opening time:

can maintain the wettability of the surface of the raw material within a certain period of time to ensure the application time of the liquid and the smooth operation.

Good suspension effect:

Good suspension effect:

provide suspension effect without changing the consistency of the liquid.

Package Information

Hydroxy Ethyl Methyl Cellulose

Packing, storage and transportation precautions for hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose

Packed in polyethylene plastic bags or cardboard drums, net weight per bag (drum): 25kg, sealed and stored. Protect from sun and rain and moisture during storage and transportation.

Weight25 KG/Bag
CorlorBlue, White, Yellow
StorageDry and clean conditions

Uses of HEMC

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose, also known as methyl cellulose, is an organic compound methyl hydroxyethyl cellulose. hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose's most important uses include the production of adhesives, cosmetics, paper and textiles, pharmaceuticals, paints and many other industrial applications.

The following are the main uses of hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose

1. Thickening agent

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is used as a thickening agent in cosmetics such as shampoos and conditioners, as it forms a film on the hair strands. This film makes the hair look smooth and shiny. In addition, the material covers the hair strands to protect them from water damage. Because it is water soluble, hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose does not build up on the hair strands after repeated use of products containing it.

2. Binding agent

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is an excellent adhesive or binder, as it forms a gel when mixed with water. This substance is commonly used in the manufacture of pills and capsules as it binds the different pill components together to form a homogeneous pill that is easy to swallow.

3. Medicine

You may have taken hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose without knowing it, because this substance has been used for decades in the manufacture of medical products. It is used as an excipient (in the sense that the active drug contains one that binds all the ingredients together). In addition, methyl hydroxyethylcellulose is used to wrap pills and help slow their release into the body.

4. Dispersant.

When mixed with other chemicals, this compound acts as a dispersant as it absorbs water to form a gel while keeping the ingredients in suspension. This allows it to be used in a variety of applications, including household products such as laundry detergents, foodstuffs such as whipped cream, cosmetics such as toothpaste and medicines such as cough syrup or eye drops.

5. Concrete mixtures

Concrete mixtures using hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose are often used for their smoothness and strength. Methylcellulose is used to cover the inner surfaces of concrete pipes so that they have a uniform thickness and thus reduce wear over time. This method also produces crack-resistant lines when exposed to water, heat or other harsh conditions.

6. Paper

MHEC has gained wide acceptance in the paper industry due to the compound's low toxicity and its ability to improve paper properties while reducing production costs. It is used as a dry strength agent in paper production to improve tensile strength without increasing grammage; due to its good properties as a dispersant, it can also be used as a pigment binder in paper coatings and as a water retention agent in paper.

7. Soil stabilisers.

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose (MHEC) is used as a soil stabiliser to improve crop yields on marginal land and in areas where irrigation is difficult. It can be mixed with water and applied to the soil to improve water retention during dry periods or when rainfall is scarce. When blended into fertiliser formulations, MHEC allows plants to retain available nutrients for longer periods of time than untreated fertilisers.

8. Humectants and surfactants

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose (MHEC) is also used as a humectant and surfactant in cosmetics, baby lotions, shampoos and bath oils. A surfactant is a wetting agent that reduces the surface tension of a liquid and allows it to disperse on the surface. It can be used as an emulsifier to keep water-based and oil-based ingredients mixed in cosmetics.

9. Paints and coatings

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose, also known as MHEC and methyl cellulose, is a thickening agent used in paints and coatings. This compound helps to prevent paint from sagging and dripping when drying. This combination also helps to provide extra adhesion to the colour, making it useful in the construction of buildings. MHEC is often used as a thickener in decorative paints. Decorative paints are not as strong as structural paints, so they need a thickener to help them adhere to walls and other surfaces without breaking or flaking. MHEC provides water resistance to decorative paints, making it more difficult for walls to be damaged by exposure to water. It also helps to make it easier to clean the paint that has been applied.

10. Herbicide

Some farmers use hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose as a herbicide. When mixed with water and sprinkled on certain plants, it can help to stop growth or kill the plant altogether. This gel-like substance helps the herbicide to stay in place and not be washed away by water or carried away by the wind.

11. Food production

Because of its ability to stabilise products, hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is often used as an ingredient in the production of commercial ice cream. It can replace gelatine and vegetable gums, such as guar gum and acacia bean gum. This compound is also added to baked goods, salad dressings and salad gums. It helps to prevent sugar crystallisation and extends the shelf life of foods by controlling moisture content.

12. Cement

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose helps to improve the efficiency of cement by extending water retention and hydration reactions. This helps to reduce the amount of cement water required during construction projects, ultimately reducing costs. The compound can also be added to concrete mixes to improve their structural properties such as flexural, compressive and tensile strengths. hydroxy Ethyl Methyl Cellulose's good thixotropy and ease of incorporation gives the mortar pumpability. It also improves the resistance to sagging and high water retention, extending the workable time of the mortar and helping it to develop high mechanical strength during the setting period.

13. Oil drilling

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is also used in oil drilling operations to thicken fluids used in the exploration process. This helps to ensure that fluids can be pumped through the pipeline without dripping or spilling, which would reduce the efficiency of their intended function.

14. Cosmetics

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is found in many cosmetic products including hairsprays, shampoos, conditioners, toothpastes and soaps. As with other uses of methylhydroxyethylcellulose, it is used to increase the viscosity of these products and make them easier to apply.

15. Gypsum plasters and plaster products: 

hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose is used as a binder with thixotropic and retarding properties to improve spreadability and extend workability. Water retention prevents the slurry from cracking after application due to rapid drying and increases the strength after hardening.


hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose improves the adhesion of masonry mortars to the masonry surface and enhances water retention, resulting in an increase in the strength of the mortar. Improves lubricity and plasticity thus improving construction performance.

17. Sheet caulking:

 hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose has excellent water retention, lubricity, high shrinkage and crack resistance, provides a smooth and homogeneous texture to the material and enhances the adhesion of the joint surface.

Dissolution and application of hydroxy ethyl methyl cellulose

Take 1/3 or 2/3 of the required amount of hot water and heat it to boiling, add MHEC and get a hot water slurry, then add the remaining amount of cold water, keep stirring and cool the mixture to get a dry mix.


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Shijiazhuang Henggu Jianxin Cellulose Co., Ltd.

Chemical Industrial Park, Xinji City, Hebei Province, China Post Code: 052360

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