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Data: Fair

Polysorbate 20

IMAGE SOURCE: PubChem

SEARCH PRODUCTS

Other Concerns

Non-reproductive organ system toxicity (low) and Contamination concerns (high)

SYNONYMS

MONODODECANOATE POLY(OXY-1,2-ETHANEDIYL) DERIVS. SORBITAN, POLY(OXY-1,2-ETHANEDIYL) DERIVS. SORBITAN, MONODODECANOATE, POLYOXYETHYLENE (20) SORBITAN MONOLAURATE, POLYOXYETHYLENE SORBITAN MONOLAURATE, POLYSORBATE 20, POLYSORBATE-20, POYLSORBATE-20, SORBIMACROGOL LAURATE 300, SORBITAN, MONODODECANOATE, POLY(OXY-1,2-ETHANEDIYL) DERIVS., and TWEEN-20

Polysorbate 20 (Tween 20) is a surfactant and emulsifier used in cleaners and personal care products.

Common concerns

See how this product scores for common concerns.

  • LOW
    Cancer
  • LOW
    Allergies & Immunotoxicity
  • LOW
    Developmental and Reingredientive Toxicity
  • LOW
    Use Restrictions

Ingredient concerns

  • CONCERNS
  • DATA SOURCES

Products with this Ingredient

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facial moisturizer/treatment224 products
serums & essences201 products
mask178 products
shampoo176 products
body wash/cleanser167 products
foundation143 products
facial cleanser130 products
toners/astringents116 products
hair treatment/serum111 products
moisturizer106 products
hair styling aide102 products
liquid hand soap101 products
conditioner98 products
exfoliant/scrub97 products
daily use with SPF81 products
styling gel/lotion78 products
around-eye cream71 products
bronzer/highlighter68 products
makeup remover55 products
body spray48 products
baby wipes47 products
recreational sunscreen45 products
hand sanitizer41 products
sunless tanning36 products
CC cream36 products
styling mousse/foam35 products
makeup primer34 products
setting powder/spray32 products
hair spray31 products
after sun product30 products
mouthwash27 products
detangler27 products
anti-aging26 products
eye shadow25 products
lipstick25 products
bath oil/salts/soak23 products
concealer22 products
antiperspirant/deodorant20 products
baby lotion19 products
mascara18 products
hand cream16 products
BB cream16 products
eye liner15 products
blush15 products
brow liner15 products
body firming lotion14 products
after shave13 products
antiperspirant/deodorant (men's)12 products
shaving cream10 products
facial powder9 products
9 products
foot cleansing8 products
foot moisturizer8 products
hair color and bleaching8 products
bubble bath8 products
eye makeup remover6 products
hair-loss treatment6 products
baby shampoo6 products
foot odor control6 products
muscle/joint soreness5 products
baby bubble bath5 products
baby sunscreen5 products
beard care5 products
baby soap4 products
polish remover4 products
nail treatment3 products
tanning oil3 products
shaving cream (men's)3 products
tooth whitening3 products
body oil3 products
cuticle treatment3 products
damaged skin treatment3 products
beard cleanser3 products
skin fading/lightener2 products
other eye makeup2 products
lip balm2 products
oil controller1 products
hair relaxer1 products
depilatory1 products
bar soap1 products
lip gloss1 products
glitter1 products
lip plumper1 products
eyelash glue1 products
baby oil1 products
baby powder1 products
lip liner1 products

Contamination concerns

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Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Limited evidence of sense organ toxicityScorecard.org Toxicity Information
Classified as not expected to be potentially toxic or harmfulEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List
Classified as a low human health priorityEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List

Data gaps

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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
2265 studies in PubMed science library may include information on the toxicity of this chemicalNLM PubMed

Multiple, additive exposure sources

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Designated as safe for general or specific, limited use in foodFDA Food Additive Status
Designated as safe for general or specific, limited use in foodFDA Everything Added to Food

Informational

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Industry or government recommendations for safe use: restrictions on concentration, impurities, product types, or manufacturing methods - anyCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments

Ecotoxicology

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Not suspected to be an environmental toxinEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List
  • ED (Environmental Defense). 2006. Scorecard _ The Pollution Information Site. http://www.scorecard.org.
  • EC (Environment Canada). 2008. Domestic Substances List Categorization. Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) Environmental Registry.
  • CIR (Cosmetic Ingredient Review). 2006. CIR Compendium, containing abstracts, discussions, and conclusions of CIR cosmetic ingredient safety assessments. Washington DC.
  • NLM (National Library of Medicine). 2012. PubMed online scientific bibliography data. http://www.pubmed.gov.
  • FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) 2006. Food Additive Status List. Downloaded from http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/%7Edms/opa-appa.html, Oct 16, 2006.
  • FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration). 2008. EAFUS [Everything Added to Food]: A Food Additive Database. FDA Office of Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.

Understanding scores

Cosmetics and personal care products are not required to be tested for safety before being allowed on the market. The Skin Deep® scoring system was designed to help the public understand whether a product is safe to use or whether it contains ingredients of concern.

Every product and ingredient in Skin Deep gets a two-part score – one for hazard and one for data availability. The safest products score well by both measures, with a low hazard rating and a fair or better data availability rating.

HOW WE DETERMINE SCORES

Hazard score

The Skin Deep ingredient hazard score, from 1 to 10, reflects known and suspected hazards linked to the ingredients. The EWG VERIFIED™ mark means a product meets EWG’s strictest criteria for transparency and health.

Score legend

Data availability

The Skin Deep data availability rating reflects the number of scientific studies about the product or ingredient in the published scientific literature.

NONE LIMITED FAIR GOOD ROBUST
Low Availability
Moderate Availability
High Availability

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