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Friday
Jul312009

Ethylhexylglycerin

Today's Chemical:

Ethylhexylglycerin

EWG Risk Score:

1

What is it?

Ethylhexylglycerin is a conditioning agent and preservative.

Why is it a risk?

Two studies have found it to be a skin irritant, even at low concentrations, so people with sensitive skin may experience contact dermatitis.  In addition, it is an eye irritant in animal studies.  Reactions are typically low, however. (Source)

What Type of Products is it in?

Lotions, washes, shampoo, conditioner

Steph's Opinion:

Ethylhexylglycerin is a relatively new chemical on the market.  Many companies use it as an alternative to parabens and claim that it's from natural sources.  Yes, it may have started out as a vegetable oil, but it's gone through several chemical processes to become what it is.  This isn't the worst ingredient in the world, but it's also not truly natural, and safety data is highly lacking for this ingredient. There are only four studies or reviews published in the National Library of Medicine. 

Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19780779

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17680873

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12492553

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Reader Comments (42)

@Annie--I'm sorry to hear of your allergy! None of these ingredients really stick out to me as being marine-derived, although probably your best bet would be to contact the manufacturer and ask for sure. Possible that the silicone-based ingredients could just be irritating your skin.

Tue, March 14, 2017 | Registered Commenter[Stephanie Greenwood]

Wow - I am enjoying reading the factual information provided. Consumers need information that is not soft pedaled by the producer. I appreciate the information because I am a very skeptical consumer. Having been in marketing and consumer products for many years, I understand that "consumer products" companies are a for-profit industry and information they provide will be sent through marketing before you ever see it.

I am confused by the "opinion" noted in the comments above criticizing the person giving factual information. What are you afraid of? A consumer coming to his or her own conclusion. If someone is reading this blog, my guess is that they are a researcher and will draw their own conclusions after searching many sources. I would hope civility and logic would rule the comments and not anger or frustration at an opposing opinion.

Thanks for the unemotional opinion on ingredients. So glad I found this website!

Sat, June 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterCynthia

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