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image source: PubChem
Health Concerns of the Ingredient:
Overall Hazard
Developmental &
reproductive toxicity
Use restrictions
Other HIGH concerns: Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs); Other LOW concerns: Enhanced skin absorption, Data gaps, Endocrine disruption, Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

About SULISOBENZONE: Sulisobenzone (benzophenone-4) is a sunscreen ingredient; can cause skin and eye irritation. Does not penetrate the skin to a large degree, but enhances the ability of other chemicals to penetrate.

Function(s): Sunscreen Agent; Ultraviolet Light Absorber; UV ABSORBER; UV FILTER



Concern Reference
Human skin toxicant or allergen - strong evidenceCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments
Human skin toxicant or allergen - strong evidence
One or more human case studies show possible photoallergic or allergenic effectsHughes TM, Stone NM
One or more human case studies show equivocal photoallergic or allergenic effectsRodriguez E, Valbuena MC, Rey M, Porras de Quintana L

Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs)

Concern Reference
Human irritant - strong evidence (only for products for use around the eyes, on the skin, or may be aerosolized (airborne))Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments
Not likely to be a skin irritant in humans

Endocrine disruption

Concern Reference
Associated with endocrine disruptionKunz PY, Galicia HF, Fent K

Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

Concern Reference
One or more animal studies show sense effects at moderate doses (low dose studies may be unavailable for this ingredient)
One or more animal studies show broad systemic effects at high doses (low dose studies may be unavailable for this ingredient)
Classified as not expected to be potentially toxic or harmfulEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List

Enhanced skin absorption

Concern Reference
Penetration enhancerPont AR, Charron AR, Brand RM
Absorbs into the skin


Concern Reference
Not likely to be mutagenic in humans

Data gaps

Concern Reference
Risk assessment method deficiencies and data gaps - Maximum reported "as used" concentration is basis of safety assessment by industry safety panel (Cosmetic Ingredient Review, CIR) - implicit safe concentration limit in productCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments
13,180 studies in PubMed science library may include information on the toxicity of this chemical see search results ->NLM PubMed


Concern Reference
Not suspected to be an environmental toxinEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List

Persistence and bioaccumulation

Concern Reference
Not suspected to be persistentEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List
Not suspected to be bioaccumulativeEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List

Data Sources

CIR (Cosmetic Ingredient Review). 2006. CIR Compendium, containing abstracts, discussions, and conclusions of CIR cosmetic ingredient safety assessments. Washington DC.
EC (Environment Canada). 2008. Domestic Substances List Categorization. Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) Environmental Registry.
European Commission. 2013. Cosing, the European Commission database with information on cosmetic substances and ingredients. Accessed on March 1, 2013 at http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/cosmetics/cosing/ .
Hughes TM, Stone NM. 2007. Benzophenone 4: an emerging allergen in cosmetics and toiletries? Contact Dermatitis 56(3): 153-156.
IFRA (International Fragrance Assocication). 2010. IFRA Fragrance Ingredient List based on 2008 Use Survey. Accessed online 01/04/2010: http://www.ifraorg.org/Home/News/Latest-News/page.aspx/66?xf_itemId=43&xf_selectionDatapartId=25
Kunz PY, Galicia HF, Fent K. 2006. Comparison of in vitro and in vivo estrogenic activity of UV filters in fish. Toxicol Sci 90(2): 349-361.
NLM (National Library of Medicine). 2012. PubMed online scientific bibliography data. http://www.pubmed.gov.
Pont AR, Charron AR, Brand RM. 2004. Active ingredients in sunscreens act as topical penetration enhancers for the herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 195(3): 348-354.
Rodriguez E, Valbuena MC, Rey M, Porras de Quintana L. 2006. Causal agents of photoallergic contact dermatitis diagnosed in the national institute of dermatology of Colombia. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed 22(4): 189-192.
{ACC, 1959; IBL, 1962}
{CTFA, 1980; DHEW, 1978; Hill Top Research Labs, 1979; Litton Bioneics, 1979}
{Couteau, 2001}
{Hill Top Research Labs, 1978}
{Hill Top Research Labs, 1978}
{IBL, 1967; IBL, 1967; IBL 1962 ; ACC, 1959}
{IBL, 1967; Kligman, 1976; IBL 1962}
{IBL, 1967}

About the Skin Deep® ratings

EWG provides information on personal care product ingredients from the published scientific literature, to supplement incomplete data available from companies and the government. The ratings below indicate the relative level of concern posed by exposure to the ingredients in this product - not the product itself - compared to other product formulations. The ratings reflect potential health hazards but do not account for the level of exposure or individual susceptibility, factors which determine actual health risks, if any. Learn more | Legal Disclaimer


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