This paper investigates the surface film adsorption and lubricity of two different types of potential environmentally friendly cold metal forming lubricants: soybean vegetable oil in water VO/W emulsions and triblock copolymer aqueous solutions. The lubricants have different visual appearance, surface film adsorption characteristic, lubricity and surface cleaning behaviour. The effects of concentration, temperature and emulsification ultrasonic energy (for VO/W emulsion) are studied. The result shows that the soybean VO/W emulsions have stronger adsorption, superior lubricity and anti-wear property compared to the copolymer solutions. The effect of temperature is investigated at 30 °C and 65 °C which are below and above cloud point of the aqueous copolymer solutions. Both lubricants show improved friction and anti-wear property at 65 °C. However, tenacious residual film remained on the discs surface after surface cleaning indicates lower cleanability of the soybean VO/W emulsions compared to the copolymer solutions, postulating the need for extra post-processing cleaning operations after cold forming process with VO/W emulsion lubricant.