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Wednesday
Sep162009

Sorbitol

Today's Chemical:

Sorbitol

EWG Risk Score:

1

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!)

Hugo Naturals

The Body Shop

Poofy Organics

Tom's of Maine

Steph's Opinion:

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!

Sources:

http://www.jtbaker.com/msds/englishhtml/s5666.htm

http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ingredient.php?ingred06=706239

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/119640248/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0

 

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Reader Comments (2)

i used this topic when i was doing my essay writing project during my college years :) interesting topic.

Wed, December 16, 2009 | Registered Commentergemma danes

I think this blog is a wonderful idea! I see you have not posted for a while and I really hope this blog is updated a bit more often as I am highly interested in this topic. I am currently working on an ebook cataloging many of the toxic ingredients used in cosmetics and personal care products today. We need to be aware of what we put on our skin!

Sat, December 26, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

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