Other ConcernsUse restrictions (high), Non-reproductive organ system toxicity (low), and Biochemical or cellular level changes (high)
Unacceptable: EWG VERIFIED products cannot contain this ingredient
Retinol is a potent form of synthetic vitamin A. Data from an FDA study indicate that retinoid ingredients may speed the development of skin tumors and lesions on sun-exposed skin. FDA, Norwegian and German health agencies have raised a concern that daily skin application of vitamin A creams may contribute to excessive vitamin A intake for pregnant women and other populations.
See how this product scores for common concerns.
LOWAllergies & Immunotoxicity
HIGHDevelopmental and Reproductive Toxicity
- DATA SOURCES
Products with this Ingredient
|facial moisturizer/treatment||136 products|
|serums & essences||104 products|
|around-eye cream||43 products|
|facial cleanser||19 products|
|body wash/cleanser||9 products|
|makeup primer||9 products|
|daily use with SPF||6 products|
|hair treatment/serum||5 products|
|makeup remover||4 products|
|skin fading/lightener||4 products|
|body firming lotion||3 products|
|hand cream||3 products|
|setting powder/spray||3 products|
|lip gloss||2 products|
|facial powder||2 products|
|makeup removing wipes||2 products|
|sunless tanning||2 products|
|hair styling aide||1 products|
|cuticle treatment||1 products|
|hair-loss treatment||1 products|
|hair spray||1 products|
|eyelash glue||1 products|
|lip balm||1 products|
|diaper cream||1 products|
|Violation of government restrictions - Banned or found unsafe for use in cosmetics||Open scientific literature|
|Restricted in cosmetics (recommendations or requirements) - use, concentration, or manufacturing restrictions - Use is restricted in Canadian cosmetics||Canada - Prohibited and Restricted Cosmetics Ingredients|
|Known human reproductive toxicant||Open scientific literature|
|Limited evidence of reproductive toxicity||Open scientific literature|
|Limited evidence of developmental toxicity||Open scientific literature|
Enhanced skin absorption
|Absorbs into the skin||Open scientific literature|
Biochemical or cellular level changes
|Produces excess reactive oxygen species that can interfere with cellular signaling, cause mutations, lead to cell death and may be implicated in cardiovascular disease.||Open scientific literature|
|One or more animal studies show tumor formation at very low doses||Open scientific literature|
|Cancer - limited evidence||Open scientific literature|
|One or more in vitro tests on mammalian cells show positive mutation results||Open scientific literature|
|One or more in vitro tests non-mammalian cells show positive mutation results||Open scientific literature|
Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)
|Limited evidence of skin toxicity||Open scientific literature|
|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 product||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
|38937 studies in PubMed science library may include information on the toxicity of this chemical||NLM PubMed|
Multiple, additive exposure sources
|Designated as safe for general or specific, limited use in food||FDA Everything Added to Food|
|Designated as safe for general or specific, limited use in food||FDA Food Additive Status|
|Industry or government recommendations for safe use: restrictions on concentration, impurities, product types, or manufacturing methods - any||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
- Open scientific/peer reviewed literature
- Health Canada. 2007. List of Prohibited and Restricted Cosmetic Ingredients. Canada's Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist. March 2007.
- 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). 2008. EAFUS [Everything Added to Food]: A Food Additive Database. FDA Office of Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.
- 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.
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
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.
The Skin Deep data availability rating reflects the number of scientific studies about the product or ingredient in the published scientific literature.