EWG Risk Score:
What is it?
A sugar alcohol used as a humectant in cosmetic products.
Why is it a risk?
If ingested, it can cause intestinal upset.
Types of products it's found in:
Soaps, Personal Lubricants, Facial Cream, Moisturizers, Mouthwash
Brands that use this ingredient:
Bubble & Bee Organic (That's us!)
The Body Shop
Tom's of Maine
All sugar alcohols can cause digestive upset when ingested. One study in 1987 showed that sorbitol caused mutagentic activity when ingested at high doses. However, more recent studies have not shown this effect. In fact, in one study, the "control" group had more chromosomal abnormalities than the group that was treated with sorbitol. So, in this study, sorbitol had anti-mutagenic effects.
When used on skin, sorbitol is a wonderful humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the air and brings it to skin. Extracted from sugar beets, sorbitol is very similar to vegetable glycerin. So the bottom line---great stuff!