Other ConcernsUse restrictions (high), Non-reproductive organ system toxicity (high), Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs) (low), and Occupational hazards (high)
SYNONYMSFORMALDEHYDE SOLUTION (FORMALIN) and METHYLENE GLYCOL
Unacceptable: EWG VERIFIED products cannot contain this ingredient
Formalin is a solution of water, formaldehyde, and methanol.
See how this product scores for common concerns.
MODERATEAllergies & Immunotoxicity
LOWDevelopmental and Reproductive Toxicity
- DATA SOURCES
Products with this Ingredient
|Violation of government restrictions - Banned or found unsafe for use in cosmetics||Japan's Standards for Cosmetics|
|Violation of industry recommendations - Restricted in cosmetics; use, concentration, or manufacturing restrictions - Not safe for use in products intended to be aerosolized, according to industry safety panel (Cosmetic Ingredient Review, CIR)||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
|Restricted in cosmetics (recommendations or requirements) - use, concentration, or manufacturing restrictions - Use is restricted in Canadian cosmetics||Canada - Prohibited and Restricted Cosmetics Ingredients|
|Recommendation to minimize use in cosmetics - Keep concentration to minimum: warning from industry safety panel||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
|Determined safe for use in cosmetics, subject to concentration or use limitations - Safe for use in cosmetics with some qualifications||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
|Known human carcinogen||Int'l Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) - Carcinogens|
|Known human carcinogen||NTP Report on Carcinogens, 11th Edition|
|Possible human carcinogen||EPA Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS)|
|Possible human carcinogen||California EPA Proposition 65|
|Possible human carcinogen||Amer Conf of Gov't Industrial Hygienists - Carcinogens|
|Limited evidence of carcinogenicity||CPS&Q - Classification & Labelling|
|Limited evidence of carcinogenicity||NIOSH Occupational Carcinogens|
Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)
|Known human respiratory toxicant||EPA Hazardous Air Pollutants|
|Classified as toxic or harmful||CPS&Q - Classification & Labelling|
|One or more animal studies show classified as toxic effects at low doses||EPA Categorized List of Inert Pesticide Ingredients|
|Limited evidence of respiratory toxicity||National Library of Medicine HazMap|
|Limited evidence of sense organ toxicity||Scorecard.org Toxicity Information|
|One or more animal studies show classified as toxic effects at moderate doses (low dose studies may be unavailable for this ingredient)||EPA Toxic Release Inventory PBTs|
|Allowed workplace exposures restricted to low doses||CPS&Q - Classification & Labelling|
|Human immune and respiratory toxicant or allergen - strong evidence||Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics|
|Human skin toxicant or allergen - strong evidence||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
|Limited evidence of immune system toxicity or allergies||CPS&Q - Classification & Labelling|
|Limited evidence of immune system toxicity or allergies||Scorecard.org Toxicity Information|
|Limited evidence of immune system toxicity or allergies||National Library of Medicine HazMap|
|Limited evidence of reproductive toxicity||Scorecard.org Toxicity Information|
Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs)
|Limited evidence of skin irritation||National Library of Medicine HazMap|
|Occupational hazards related to handling||CPS&Q - Classification & Labelling|
|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|
|19 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 - Not safe for use in products intended to be aerosolized, according to industry safety panel (Cosmetic Ingredient Review, CIR)||Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments|
- Japan Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare. 2006. Standards for Cosmetics. Evaluation and Licensing Division. Pharmaceutical and Food Safety Bureau.
- CIR (Cosmetic Ingredient Review). 2006. CIR Compendium, containing abstracts, discussions, and conclusions of CIR cosmetic ingredient safety assessments. Washington DC.
- Health Canada. 2007. List of Prohibited and Restricted Cosmetic Ingredients. Canada's Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist. March 2007.
- IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer). 2008. Overall Evaluations of Carcinogenicity to Humans, as evaluated in IARC Monographs Volumes 1-99 (a total of 935 agents, mixtures and exposures).
- NTP (National Toxicology Program). 2005. Report on Carcinogens, Eleventh Edition; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Toxicology Program.
- EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2008. Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS). Evidence for human carcinogenicity based on 1986-2005 guidelines.
- California EPA (California Environmental Protection Agency). 9/2008. Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986. Chemicals known to the State to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.
- ACGIH (American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists) 2008. ACGIH cancer classification system. www.acgih.org.
- CPS&Q (Consumer Products Safety & Quality) formely known as ECB (European Chemicals Bureau). 2008. Classification and Labelling: Chemicals: Annex VI of Directive 67/548/EEC through the 31st ATP.
- NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health). 2006. NIOSH Carcinogens List (Potential occupational carcinogens). http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npotocca.html.
- EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2005. Office of Air. The 112(b)1 Hazardous Air Pollutants List (as modified). Last modified: 12 Dec 2005.
- EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1987 & 2005. Office of Pesticide Programs. Inert (other) Pesticide Ingredients in Pesticide Products - Categorized List of Inert (other) Pesticide Ingredients.
- NLM (National Library of Medicine). 2006. HazMap — Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Agents.
- ED (Environmental Defense). 2006. Scorecard _ The Pollution Information Site. http://www.scorecard.org.
- EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1999. Toxics Release Inventory Program. PBT Chemical Rule.
- AOEC (Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics). 2009. AEOC exposures codes and asthmagen designation.
- 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.