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Data: Fair

Propylene Glycol

IMAGE SOURCE: PubChem

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Other Concerns

Enhanced skin absorption, Use restrictions (low), Non-reproductive organ system toxicity (moderate), and Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs) (high)

SYNONYMS

● 1,2-DIHYDROXYPROPANE
● 1,2-PROPANEDIOL
● 2-HYDROXYPROPANOL
● METHYLETHYL GLYCOL
● PROPANE-1,2-DIOL
● PROPYLENE GLYCOL

This ingredient is not currently on EWG's Skin Deep Restricted or Unacceptable Lists.


Propylene glycol is a small organic alcohol commonly used as a skin conditioning agent. It has been associated with irritant and allergic contact dermatitis as well as contact urticaria in humans; these sensitization effects can be manifested at propylene glycol concentrations as low as 2%.

Common concerns

See how this product scores for common concerns.

  • LOW
    Cancer
  • MODERATE
    Allergies & Immunotoxicity
  • LOW
    Developmental and Reproductive Toxicity
  • LOW
    Use Restrictions

Ingredient concerns

  • CONCERNS
  • DATA SOURCES

Products with this Ingredient

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shampoo437 products
hair color and bleaching413 products
conditioner409 products
hair styling aide274 products
hair treatment/serum259 products
antiperspirant/deodorant224 products
mask219 products
concealer200 products
facial moisturizer/treatment197 products
moisturizer181 products
foundation175 products
styling gel/lotion157 products
serums & essences150 products
mascara149 products
body wash/cleanser132 products
facial cleanser125 products
sunless tanning110 products
bar soap110 products
recreational sunscreen103 products
mouthwash92 products
exfoliant/scrub88 products
body spray87 products
liquid hand soap87 products
eye liner84 products
antiperspirant/deodorant (men's)82 products
eye shadow81 products
brow liner77 products
styling mousse/foam72 products
nail polish72 products
hair spray68 products
hand sanitizer62 products
hand cream59 products
setting powder/spray58 products
makeup primer55 products
toners/astringents52 products
around-eye cream52 products
lip balm49 products
toothpaste45 products
fragrance for women44 products
eyelash glue44 products
daily use with SPF41 products
hair-loss treatment36 products
BB cream35 products
polish remover34 products
blush32 products
shaving cream30 products
lip gloss28 products
nail treatment28 products
after shave27 products
anti-aging25 products
baby wipes25 products
makeup remover18 products
CC cream18 products
body firming lotion17 products
bronzer/highlighter17 products
baby sunscreen17 products
bath oil/salts/soak16 products
after sun product16 products
lipstick16 products
detangler16 products
16 products
foot moisturizer14 products
fragrance for men13 products
body cleansing wipes12 products
muscle/joint soreness11 products
bubble bath9 products
tooth whitening9 products
body oil9 products
glitter9 products
facial cleansing wipes9 products
makeup removing wipes9 products
shaving cream (men's)8 products
baby lotion8 products
skin fading/lightener7 products
foot cleansing7 products
lip balm with SPF7 products
beard care7 products
depilatory6 products
hair relaxer6 products
lip liner6 products
pore strips6 products
eye makeup remover5 products
other eye makeup5 products
baby shampoo5 products
tanning oil4 products
baby soap4 products
baby toothpaste4 products
damaged skin treatment4 products
nail glue3 products
baby oil3 products
foot odor control2 products
cuticle treatment2 products
diaper cream2 products
beard cleanser2 products
lip plumper1 products
body powder1 products
other men's products1 products

Enhanced skin absorption

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Penetration enhancerCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments

Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs)

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Classified as skin irritantNational Library of Medicine HazMap

Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Classified as expected to be toxic or harmfulEnvironment Canada Domestic Substance List

Allergies/immunotoxicity

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Limited evidence of skin and immune system toxicity or allergiesOpen scientific literature

Use restrictions

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Determined safe for use in cosmetics, subject to concentration or use limitations - Safe for use in cosmetics with some qualificationsCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments

Data gaps

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Safety assessment was based on related chemicalCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments
5589 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 - Determined safe for use in cosmetics up to a specified concentration limitCosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments

Developmental/reproductive toxicity

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CONCERN REFERENCE
Not likely to be a any toxicant in humansNTP - Risks to Human Reproduction
  • 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). 2006. HazMap — Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Agents.
  • EC (Environment Canada). 2008. Domestic Substances List Categorization. Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) Environmental Registry.
  • Open scientific/peer reviewed literature
  • 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.
  • NTP (National Toxicology Program). 2006. NTP Center for the Evaluation fo Risks to Human Reproduction (CERHR). NTP-CERHR Reports and Monographs.

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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