Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair?

Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair
Why the Alcohol-Free Labels? – Alcohols in beauty and personal care products are normally considered as ingredients that are not friendly. However, it’s essential to recognize that not all alcohols are the same. Fatty alcohols are different, and some types might, in fact, be good for skin and hair.

If you were to walk down any personal care product aisle at the grocery store or pharmacy, you’d likely see many products that proudly advertise that they don’t use alcohol. This is because low-molecular-weight alcohols—like ethanol or benzyl alcohol—evaporate quickly. Such alcohols are helpful in products like hand sanitizer, but are also associated with drying out skin and hair.

Because of their volatile nature, these alcohols are used in skincare products to diminish the skin’s protective barrier and help ingredients penetrate deeper within the skin. This can help to ensure the absorption of essential skincare ingredients, like vitamin C.

What does benzyl alcohol do to your hair?

What is this medication? BENZYL ALCOHOL (BEN zil AL kuh hawl) lotion is used to treat lice of the hair and scalp. It acts by destroying the lice. It does not destroy their eggs; a second treatment is needed 7 days after the first treatment.

Is benzyl alcohol in hair products safe?

Are All Alcohols in Hair Products Bad? There are many ingredients that damage hair by drying out strands, like and, And, yes, alcohol is another. But this isn’t as cut and dry as your latest trim and blowout because not all alcohols are created equally.

Learn which alcohols you want to avoid in hair care products and those that don’t do as much damage to your strands. You’ve probably seen articles and social media posts telling you to steer clear of alcohols in hair care. Then you go to the beauty store and tons of products (including some of your favorites that you thought were safe) contain alcohol.

What’s the deal? As is the case with many types of cosmetic ingredients, there are some alcohols that damage your hair, and those that are more gentle and even offer some benefits. So, no. Not all alcohols in hair products are bad. When it comes to cosmetic ingredients and deciphering which are best to use on your hair, it’s worth it to take some time and learn more.

No, we aren’t recommending you read all the scientific studies you can get your hands on where alcohols in hair care are concerned. Unless you want to, of course. Below we break down the good and bad when it comes to alcohol in hair products. What do we mean when we say “bad alcohols”? Basically, in terms of hair care, these types of alcohols dry out hair.

Why would a product manufacturer add a drying type of alcohol to a product? With certain products, manufacturers add alcohols for their drying effect. Think those dry shampoos and hair volumizers that make hair feel cleaner and fuller by drying out strands.

  • As for “good alcohols”, those are fatty alcohols.
  • Fatty alcohols are derived from oils and don’t dry strands like the drying alcohols mentioned above.
  • They have emollient properties and are also used to emulsify products, keeping oils and waters from separating in products like shampoos and conditioners.

When shopping for hair care, it helps to know what to look for and how to identify good alcohols from bad alcohols. Below is our list to I.D.-ing the good from the bad. Let’s start from the top with the alcohols you do want to find in your hair care: Cetearyl alcohol —A mixture of cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol, two fatty acids found in plants and animals, often derived from coconut oil.

Is cetearyl alcohol bad for hair? This alcohol is an emollient, which creates a moisturizing layer on top of hair strands so hair doesn’t become dried out. Cetyl and stearyl alcohols on their own are also good alcohol options in hair products. Products like,, and, which delivery maximum moisture to extremely dry, damaged hair contain cetearyl alcohol to deliver a protective layer and improve hair porosity and moisture retention.

Behenyl alcohol —Another fatty acid alcohol which can be derived from plants, like corn, behenyl alcohol acts as a thickening agent and emulsifier (to keep oil and water from separating) in hair care products, like, It can also keep hair from becoming dry.

  • Lauryl alcohol —Derived from coconut or palm kernel oils, lauryl alcohol is another fatty alcohol.
  • It acts as an emollient, maintaining moisture in the hair, and can also be used as a cleansing agent making it the good go-to alcohol for shampoos.
  • Benzyl Alcohol – an organic alcohol found in many fruits and teas.

Popular in hair products, benzyl alcohol is used as a preservative, product stabilizer, or fragrance ingredient. It is considered safe in hair products and shouldn’t affect the texture of hair.

Which alcohols are bad for your hair?

Alcohol is known in general to be drying, and while fun to have a few drinks on a night out, it isn’t generally regarded as great for your hair. As we’ve become more sophisticated and selective in the products we eat, drink and wear on our bodies, we’ve also grown more educated about the ingredients contained in our grooming and haircare products.

  1. If you’ve struggled with dry or damaged hair, chances are you’ve come across a common bit of advice: avoid products that contain alcohol.
  2. The general perception is that all alcohols are drying to our locks just as much as they are to our bodies, but not all alcohol is created equal when it comes to haircare.

While it has a reputation for drying, there’s more than one type of alcohol (in fact, there are many) not all of them are bad and there are some that are actually beneficial to the health of hair. Are all alcohols bad for hair? No, they are not, though the subtleties are a bit scientific; there is alcohol in hair products for a variety of reasons, and not all of them are damaging.

  1. We tend to get confused about alcohol because it’s pretty much a generic term, and almost always seen as negative.
  2. Plus, most ingredient lists contain several different types of alcohols with different, admittedly rather confusing, names.
  3. It’s no wonder we think it’s the devil in disguise when it comes to our haircare.

The first thing it’s important to know is that alcohol is not a single chemical but a family of chemicals with differing properties. There are two major types of alcohols that are used within hair and skin care products: short-chain or drying alcohols and long-chain fatty or emulsifying alcohols.

  1. The good and bad alcohols Get ready for a mini science lesson, but one with major plus points for your tresses.
  2. Short-chained alcohols are considered ‘bad’ because they can have limited benefits for most hair types as they have very few carbon atoms, which mean they’re generally used in hair products that need a quick drying effect, aka traditional hair sprays.

They evaporate quickly, so the styling agents attach faster and work better, but the flip side is that your hair is literally getting sucked dry. With prolonged use hair this causes the cuticle to roughen, leaving the hair dry, brittle and frizzy, and on the fast track to breakage.

  1. Some of the most common short-chain alcohols that you will find in hair care products are ethanol, SD alcohol, denatured alcohol, propanol, propyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol – these are the ones it’s best to avoid.
  2. Alcohol-free hair products – the holy grail? But what do we do if we need products that maintain hold and shape to our style? Most of us guard our best-loved beauty products with a fearsome love, so what are we to do if they could actually be damaging our hair? Most quick-acting products and aerosol hairsprays rely on the wrong type of alcohol to maintain hold, but Pantene has been working hard to formulate one without any alcohol at all.

Contrary to traditional hairsprays, Never Stray No Crunch Alcohol Free HairSpray is alcohol-free and therefore doesn’t dry the hair out in the same way. Not only does it not contain alcohol but is enriched with Pro-V complex, bamboo and silk extracts that locks in your look with a flexible, soft light-as-air look with a crunch-free finish.

The same is true for Pantene Cheat Day Alcohol Free Dry Shampoo Foam, contrary to many dry shampoos in market, it’s completely alcohol-free, refreshing the hair from the root to tip in 60 seconds flat. Instead it uses natural tapioca to whip your back to life without washing, and without the drying effects of short-chain alcohols.

Are there any good alcohols in hair products? Although many hair products have alcohol-named ingredients, there are some that deliver the opposite of the drying effects of short chain alcohols: meet the long chain fatty alcohols. These are the good guys to their bad short chain cousins and one of the ultimate nourishing ingredients.

Fatty alcohols tend to come from plants and oils and add to the smooth touch and texture of creams and lotions. They’re added to as thickeners and emulsifiers (aka ingredients that keep oil and water in formulas mixed together so it doesn’t separate) but they’re also super hydrating and highly beneficial to your hair.

When looking on the back of your bottle for the ingredients of your products, the most common fatty alcohols that you will find are: lauryl alcohol, cetyl alcohol, myristyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol, behenyl alcohol and cetearyl alcohol. Is cetearyl alcohol bad for hair? One of the most common long chain fatty alcohols is this last ingredient, cetearyl alcohol and it’s vastly different from “regular” alcohols, like ethanol.

  • Found in most products for hair that’s dry or prone to frizz, it has incredible smoothing and moisturising properties.
  • Added to formulations for its luxurious slip and glide, it makes hair easier to detangle and keeps the hair hydrated and soft.
  • Think of it as your hair’s favourite alcoholic treat, a double shot of soothing and softening goodness.

Is all alcohol bad for hair? Just as heavy drinking can lead to damage to the health of your hair, so can the wrong types of alcohol product usage. Alcohol intake internally and externally through products leads to dehydration, which makes it difficult for long, healthy hair to thrive.

  • Does alcohol increase hair growth? Sadly, the complete opposite is true.
  • The more your body ingests, the more your hair weakens, and once it is weak, growth is almost impossible.
  • Thinning hair is also a by-product of too much alcohol in the system because the body relies on the minerals zinc and iron for healthy hair growth that is reduced with excessive consumption.

In short, as with everything, enjoy both your drinks and your not-so good alcohol hair products in moderation. However, with Pantene’s Waterless Collection which features Cheat Day Alcohol Free Dry Shampoo Foam, Never Stray No Crunch Hair Spray and Curl Affair Curl (Re)Shaping Cream, you can get all the benefits of clean, fresh and perfectly styled hair, without the negative effects of alcohol. Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair

Is Behenyl alcohol safe for hair?

Characteristics of Behenyl alcohol – Behenyl has a very special thickening property to allow the final product to have a more desirable and spreadable texture. Whilst opacity and thickness can be seen as a matter of persona preference, Behenyl alcohol enhances the spreadability of the final product and thus the effectiveness of the final cosmetic formulations.

The safety of Behenyl alcohol for use in cosmetics was considered in the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Volume 7, Number 3, 1988: https://www.cir-safety.org/sites/default/files/115_buff3a_suppl.pdf which found Behenyl alcohol safe for use in cosmetic use. In 2005, the Expert Pant of the Cosmetic Ingredient Review considered new data on Behenyl alcohol and confirmed the conclusion that Behenyl alcohol is safe for use in a cosmetic application.

See also:  Can Alcohol Cause Panic Attack?

Behenyl alcohol helps to retain skin moisture, improving the hydrated look of the ski, forming a natural protective layer. Behenyl alcohol does not leave a greasy feel after application in the way other emollients can, instead leaving the skin feeling soft and hydrated.

  • Behenyl alcohol acts an emollient in hair care products, helping to increase the moisture content in the hair and improve manageability.
  • When used in hair care formulas, Behenyl alcohol can be used to increase the slip of hair and thus Behenyl alcohol is useful in detangling hair care formulations.
  • Behenyl alcohol is compatible with most other cosmetic ingredients in cosmetic formulations and as such can be used as a co-emulsifier with other emulsifiers to increase stability and skin feel.

Behenyl alcohol tends to have a stabilising effect on emulsions. Behenyl alcohol is a vegan ingredient, derived from vegetable sources.

Does benzyl alcohol dry hair out?

Short chain acids found in alcohols like Benzyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Alcohol, Propyl Alcohol, Ethanol and more can have a quick drying effect on your hair and should be avoided in conditioners.

How bad is benzyl alcohol?

Abstract – Benzyl alcohol (CASRN: 100-51-6) is a clear, colorless liquid at room temperature that has gained broad use in commerce due to a wide range of advantageous properties including comparatively moderate toxicity, high polarity, solubility in water and other solvents, low vapor pressure, and faint pleasant aromatic scent.

While its major commercial uses are in fragrances and in industrial processes as solvent and textile dye assistant, benzyl alcohol enjoys many other uses. It is an ingredient commonly found in consumer and healthcare products, and arises as a natural product in plants, fruits, tea, and wines. The principal routes of occupational exposure to benzyl alcohol are via inhalation and dermal contact where benzyl alcohol is produced or used.

The general population may be exposed to this compound via dermal contact with consumer products, and to a lesser extent via inhalation of ambient air, ingestion of food, and drinking water. Its toxicity became notable when it was associated with the deaths of preterm infants.

Chronic cancer studies have proven negative, as have the majority of genotoxicity studies. In humans, exposure to benzyl alcohol can produce irritation, allergic contact dermatitis, and central nervous system depression leading to convulsion, paralysis, and respiratory failure. Low concentrations of benzyl alcohol are used as a bacteriostatic agent in intravenous preparations.

In healthy individuals, it is rapidly oxidized to benzoic acid in the liver, and then it is excreted as hippuric acid (glycine conjugate). Only one state (Florida, USA) has set minimum contamination level goal as 2100 μg l − 1 in drinking water. Orally administered LD 50 doses for this compound range from 1360 to 1580 mg per kg body weight and 1230–3120 mg per kg bodyweight for mice and rats respectively.

How long to leave benzyl alcohol in hair?

Uses – This is used to treat, tiny insects that live on and irritate your scalp.This drug is not recommended for use in children younger than 6 months. Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your before you start using benzyl alcohol and each time you get a refill.

If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. This is for use on the and scalp only. Use this medication as directed by your doctor, usually for 2 treatments, one week apart. Since this medication does not get rid of the eggs, it is important to have the second treatment to treat any that might have hatched.

To help you remember, mark the date on the calendar when you need to use this medication again. An adult should help you apply this medication. Cover your with a towel and keep your tightly closed while the medication is being applied. The medication should be applied to and enough medication should be used to cover your entire scalp and (including behind the ears and on the back of the neck).

  1. The medication into your hair and scalp.
  2. Avoid getting the medication in your,, nose, or,
  3. If the medicine gets in any of these areas, flush with plenty of water.
  4. Leave the medication on your hair as directed by your doctor, usually for 10 minutes, then rinse with water.
  5. After using this medication.
  6. You can shampoo your hair right after treatment.

A fine- comb or lice comb may be used afterward to help remove the treated lice and lice eggs (nits). Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

Do hair products with alcohol damage hair?

Short-chain = ‘Bad’ alcohols While they’re good at soaking up excess grease or sweat, the flipside is that they can excessively dry the scalp and hair, leaving the hair cuticle rough and brittle (causing frizz) as well as making the scalp itchy, flaky and prone to irritation.

Is cetyl alcohol the same as benzyl alcohol?

The mention of alcohol in the ingredient list of skincare and personal care product s is often frowned upon. But, there are two kinds of alcohol — the good and the bad. While the former can make your skincare products more effective, depending on your skin type, the latter can cause irritation, redness, and allergic reactions, as well as long term damage like dryness and a compromised skin barrier.

  • Usually found in perfumes, moisturisers, sanitisers, etc., alcohol is added “as a solvent to dissolve oil, an antiseptic to kill bacteria, as a buffer to get the right pH, and as an agent of drug delivery”, says Dr Gunjan, lead dermatologist at Proactive for Her.
  • Why is alcohol used in skincare products? “There are two purposes of using simple alcohol, like ethanol and isopropyl in skincare products — firstly, to dissolve some active ingredients that cannot be dissolved in water.

Secondly, alcohol penetrates very fast into the skin. So, for some products which cannot enter the skin, alcohol is used to make their absorption better,” explained Dr Manjul Aggarwal, senior consultant dermatologist, Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh. Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair Alcohol is added “as a solvent to dissolve oil, an antiseptic to kill bacteria, as a buffer to get the right pH, and as an agent of drug delivery”, says Dr Gunjan(Photo: Pexels) Agreed Dr Gunjan, and added that alcohol reduces oil/bacteria in cases of acne/ oily skin and acts as drug delivery agent.

For instance, minoxidil solution has alcohol in it, which is used for androgenetic hair loss, Alcohol also reduces bacteria fungi/viruses when used in sanitizers, a staple nowadays. While cetyl alcohol acts as a gentle cleanser for sensitive skin, benzyl alcohol, found naturally in fruits like apricots and cranberries as well as essential oils like ylang ylang, acts as a preservative and has a bacteriostatic effect in cosmetics and creams.

However, it can cause an allergy, too. Dr Aggarwal also pointed out that products which contain simple alcohol are not appropriate for dry and sensitive skin types as well as for people with eczema, as alcohol evaporates fast, and can dry the skin out further.

“But, on the other hand, for oily and acne-prone skin, you can use them as solvents,” she mentioned. As for high molecular alcohol, or fatty alcohol like cetyl alcohol, Dr Aggarwal pointed out that these are usually added to moisturisers to make them thick, heavy, and emollient. “They make our skin soft, smooth, and hydrated to prevent dryness,

These heavy weight alcohols retain water and also help in reduced water loss from our skin. However, its effectiveness depends on the skin type.” Good alcohol and bad alcohol Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair When used for only shorter periods, it may feel degreased or less oily, but over time ‘bad alcohol’ types will cause the skin to dry out and cause irritation (Photo: Pexels) According Dr Gunjan, “Some alcohol types, that are rich in fatty acid, are usually gentle and mild and frequently used in skin care products.

For example, cetyl alcohol, propylene glycol, stearyl alcohol, lauryl alcohol, and isopropyl myristate gently moisturize, hydrate, and repair the skin barrier, Retinol (a vitamin A derivative), which is an alcohol too, is an excellent anti aging and anti acne ingredient.” She also mentioned the ‘bad alcohol’ types that are harsh on the skin.

“When used for only shorter periods, it may feel degreased or less oily, but over time they will cause the skin to dry out and cause irritation, like ethanol, propranolol, methyl alcohol, benzyl alcohol.” How much alcohol is too much alcohol? Both experts agreed that alcohol is only good for the skin when used in limited quantities.

Even though avoiding alcohol-based products altogether may not be ideal as fatty alcohol improves the the quality of some skincare products, “if you have dry, sensitive skin, or you have rosacea, then you must avoid all products that contain alcohol. Also, products with high concentration of harsh alcohols should be used with caution or not used at all,” warns Dr Gunjan.

But, how do you tell which product contains a high concentration of alcohols? Dr Aggarwal suggested simply checking at what level is alcohol mentioned in the ingredient list. If it is the number one ingredient, it means the concentration is quite high.

Is cetearyl alcohol the same as benzyl alcohol?

The alcohol debate – Twelve Beauty Is Benzyl Alcohol Bad For Hair Alcohol, is a commonly used ingredient in the cosmetic industry. It’s mainly used in fragrances for its ability to blend and disperse the scent and evaporates quickly once it contacts the skin. Alcohol also has preserving qualities and is used in particular in natural and organic skincare formulations, where you might expect to find a higher concentration up to 10%.

  1. It can be derived synthetically or naturally, through the fermentation of sugar- whereby it is obtained by chemical reaction of starch in the presence of yeast, at the temperature below 37 ° C.
  2. Alcohol is commonly found in men’s grooming products where the evaporation from the skin’s surface creates a pleasant sensation of freshness and relief.

No matter the origin of it and its dosage, alcohol can be an irritant and can dry the skin. How do we spot it in the ingredient list? Usually it appears as “Alcohol” but we might see it as “Alcohol denat”, “ethanol” and “ethyl alcohol”. Notably there are other natural ingredients that contain the word “alcohol” but despite their name are a completely different substance with distinct set of properties.

Benzyl alcohol: can be a solvent, preservative or fragrance ingredient. It is found in different essential oils. Cetearyl alcohol: gives consistency to emulsions and is derived from palm kernel and/or coconut oil Behenyl alcohol: gives consistency to emulsions and comes from rapeseed oil. Myristyl alcohol: gives consistency to emulsions and comes from palm kernel and/or coconut oil Cetostearyl alcohol: a synthetic emulsifier. You might read it in traditional barrier creams under the name: cetomacrogol 1000 Cetylstearyl alcohol: is a synthetic emulsifier. You might read it in traditional barrier creams under the name: cetomacrogol emulsifying wax Cetyl alcohol: gives consistency to emulsions and comes from palm kernel and/or coconut oil Stearyl alcohol: gives consistency to emulsions (thickener)and comes from palm kernel and/or coconut oil

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Is benzyl alcohol good for curls?

What to watch out for – Some alcohols may cause our delicate curly hair to be dried and frizzy, and we do well to avoid those in most cases. However, other alcohols, such as cetyl alcohol, can help to condition our hair and make it soft and manageable. In general, curlies might want to be cautious of short-chain alcohols, and not so worried about fatty alcohols, benzyl alcohol or proplyene glycol. As with all ingredients, it is always best to use trial and error as a method to find what gives you the best results. Take a glance at this article about what else you should look out for in your curly hair products, check out these alcohol-free products (if you’d rather go without”>, and share your thoughts with us in the comments below! This article was originally published in October 2004 and has been updated with additional graphics.

See also:  How Bad Is It To Drink Alcohol Every Day?

Is benzyl alcohol a bad ingredient?

Benzyl Alcohol Is Super Common in Skincare—But Is It Safe? The easiest way to get a debate going in the beauty community is by bringing up the topic of preservatives—and are at the forefront of that discussion. Some believe them to be toxic endocrine disruptors, while others say not enough research exists to support those claims.

  • In an attempt to avoid the issue completely, many beauty companies are reformulating without the use of parabens in favor of alternative ingredients.
  • And in the wake of those changes, consumers are left to wonder about the safety of the other ingredients being used instead, like benzyl alcohol, and whether or not preservatives are all that important in the first place.

So what’s the deal? Dermatologist Jessica Krant, MD, says that preservatives do have an important role and deserve a place in your skincare products. “Preservatives are vital for any product that we want to last more than a few days in the bottle—and not have to keep in the refrigerator,” she explains.

  1. They help to keep germs out and to keep the products from turning rancid or discolored.” But because some might still be on the fence about using preservatives, we turned to Krant as well as two other experts for their opinions on one of the more common paraben alternatives.
  2. Here’s what these experts have to say about the specific ingredient benzyl alcohol and whether or not you’re safe to use it in your skincare.

Benzyl Alcohol Type of ingredient: Preservative, antioxidant, and solvent Main benefits: Preserves, stabilizes, and dissolves ingredients Who should use it: In general, benzyl alcohol is safe to use by anyone who does not have a true contact allergy to it.

  • How often can you use it: Benzyl alcohol is safe to use daily if you’re not sensitive to it and if it’s used at a low concentration.
  • Works well with: Benzyl alcohol works well with most, if not all, other ingredients.
  • Don’t use with: Benzyl alcohol works well with most, if not all, other ingredients.

Although it’s most widely known as benzyl alcohol, the aromatic alcohol also goes by a few other names, such as benzene methanol or phenylcarbinol. It’s derived from fruit (usually cranberries and apricots, says Yadav), comes in the form of a colorless liquid, and has a slightly sweet scent.

As a multifunctional ingredient, you can spot benzyl alcohol on the ingredient label of many different skincare, cosmetic, and personal products, such as moisturizers, lip balms, face washes, and even makeup. According to Wong, it’s primarily used in product formulation as a preservative to stop microorganisms from overgrowing in products, which could later lead to an infection.

“It’s mostly used because of the scaremongering about parabens,” Wong says. “Since a lot of consumers are worried about parabens, alternative preservatives have to be used for marketing reasons. It’s found naturally, so companies can use it in products and still market them as ‘natural.'” Besides possibly having antioxidant effects in certain formulas, benzyl alcohol doesn’t have any specific benefits for your skin itself, but rather helps to optimize skincare formulas so that they can better perform for your skin.

  • Preserves the product: According to Yadav, benzyl alcohol acts as a preservative in skincare and cosmetic products due to its antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. “Any cosmetic or personal care product that is made with no preservatives (for example, preservative-free eye drops) generally comes in individual single-use containers to prevent contamination by contact or air,” Krant says. Benzyl alcohol allows products to be bottled in larger packages designed for more than one use.
  • Stabilizes the formula: Krant adds that the ingredient also acts as a stabilizing agent against the oxidative breakdown of the product, which means it allows your products to work more effectively for a longer period.
  • Has antioxidant activity: Krant says benzyl alcohol also has antioxidant properties, and antioxidants protect against free-radical damage.
  • Dissolves ingredients: Benzyl alcohol acts as a solvent and helps to dissolve other ingredients in a product’s formula.
  • Decreases viscosity: Benzyl alcohol also decreases viscosity, which allows products to flow more easily.
  • Imparts a nice scent: As an aromatic alcohol, benzyl alcohol is naturally fragrant and gives off a slightly sweet scent. Yadav says it’s also naturally found in some essential oils, including ylang-ylang and jasmine, and has a delicate floral scent.

“Benzyl alcohol is considered to be a safe ingredient in skincare and cosmetics when used on intact skin,” Krant says. With that said, you might have seen benzyl alcohol on a list of “bad” alcohols once or twice before.

  • Can cause itching for some people: “As is the case for most preservatives, benzyl alcohol can, unfortunately, be an irritant and cause itching for some people,” says Krant.
  • Toxicity is possible with overuse: “Toxicity is a possibility with excessive ingestion, which is not considered a risk with normal usage,” says Wong, adding that it’s safe when used at a low concentration—and it usually is in well-formulated products.

However, Yadav points out that only in rare cases is someone actually allergic to benzyl alcohol. If you experience an adverse reaction (such as swelling, or redness) to products containing benzyl alcohol and suspect you could have an allergy to it, Krant says this can be identified through formal skin allergy patch testing with your dermatologist or allergist.

As for more serious risks of using the preservative in your products, those concerns aren’t as valid. “The potential for allergenicity is low, and low risk of toxicity,” Krant says. As long as you don’t have an allergy to benzyl alcohol, Krant and Wong say it’s totally fine to use in your regular skincare routine.

Because the ingredient is included in such a wide range of cosmetics, the time of day you would apply it, as well as the step in your routine, depends on each specific product. FAQ

  • What is the difference between benzyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol? Isopropyl alcohol is responsible for killing bacteria upon contact while benzyl alcohol works to prevent bacteria from entering in the first place.
  • Is benzyl alcohol safe to ingest? No. Benzyl alcohol can cause harm when ingested.
  • Is benzyl alcohol natural? Benzyl alcohol is considered a natural preservative, but it can also be synthetically made.

Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.

  1. National Center for Biotechnology Information. Updated February 14, 2022.
  2. Johnson W, Bergfeld WF, Belsito DV, et al., Int J Toxicol,2017;36(3_suppl):5S-30S. doi:10.1177/1091581817728996
  3. National Center for Biotechnology Information., Updated February 14, 2022.

: Benzyl Alcohol Is Super Common in Skincare—But Is It Safe?

Is Benzyl Benzoate safe for hair?

More safety Information: – CIR Safety Review: The CIR Expert Panel noted that no adverse effects of Benzyl Alcohol were seen in chronic oral exposure studies. Effects of Benzoic Acid and Sodium Benzoate in chronic oral exposure studies were limited to reduced feed intake and reduced growth. At doses used in cosmetics and personal care products, the CIR Expert Panel was not concerned about potential reproductive and developmental effects.

The CIR Expert Panel reviewed data that indicated that inhalation exposure to Benzyl Alcohol and Benzoic Acid did not result in adverse effects. Although, genotoxicity tests for these ingredients were mostly negative, there were some assays that were positive. Carcinogenicity studies, however, were negative.

Clinical data indicated that in a few individuals these ingredients produced non-immunologic contact urticaria and non-immunologic immediate contact reactions, characterized by the appearance of wheals, erythema, and pruritis. In one study, 5% Benzyl Alcohol elicited a reaction, and in another study, 2% Benzoic Acid did likewise.

Benzyl Alcohol, however, was not a sensitizer at 10%, nor was Benzoic Acid a sensitizer at 2%. Recognizing that the non-immunologic reactions were strictly cutaneous, likely involve a cholinergic mechanism, it was concluded that these ingredients could be used safely at concentrations up to 5%. Additionally, Benzyl Alcohol was considered safe at up to 10% for use in hair dyes.

The limited body exposure, the duration of use, and the frequency of use were considered in concluding that the non-immunologic reactions would not be a concern. Link to FDA Code of Federal Regulations and the Federal Register for Benzoic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Benzyl Alcohol and Benzyl Benzoate

Benzoic Acid Sodium Benzoate Benzyl Alcohol Local Anesthetic Active Ingredients Oral Healthcare Drug OTC External Analgesic Drug Products

Benzyl Alcohol may be used as a preservative in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in the European Union at a maximum concentration of 1%. Benzoic Acid and its salts and esters are also permitted for use as preservatives in cosmetics and personal care products at a maximum concentration (expressed as the acid) of 2.5% in rinse-off products (except oral care products), 1.7% in oral care products and 0.5% in leave on products (see Annex VI).

Benzyl Alcohol and Benzyl Benzoate are also listed in in Annex III of the European Union Cosmetics Directive. When Benzyl Alcohol or Benzyl Benzaote are used as fragrance ingredients, Annex III requires that the presence of these fragrance ingredients be indicated on the label of the product when used at greater than 0.001% in leave-on products, and greater than 0.01% in rinse-off products.

The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives has established an Acceptable Daily Intake of 0-5 mg/kg for the sum of Benzoic Acid, Potassium and Sodium Benzoate. More information about the safety of fragrances,

Does benzyl alcohol count as alcohol?

Abstract – Benzyl Alcohol is an aromatic alcohol used in a wide variety of cosmetic formulations as a fragrance component, preservative, solvent, and viscosity-decreasing agent. Benzoic Acid is an aromatic acid used in a wide variety of cosmetics as a pH adjuster and preservative.

  1. Sodium Benzoate is the sodium salt of Benzoic Acid used as a preservative, also in a wide range of cosmetic product types.
  2. Benzyl Alcohol is metabolized to Benzoic Acid, which reacts with glycine and excreted as hippuric acid in the human body.
  3. Acceptable daily intakes were established by the World Health Organization at 5 mg/kg for Benzyl Alcohol, Benzoic Acid, and Sodium Benzoate.

Benzoic Acid and Sodium Benzoate are generally recognized as safe in foods according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. No adverse effects of Benzyl Alcohol were seen in chronic exposure animal studies using rats and mice. Effects of Benzoic Acid and Sodium Benzoate in chronic exposure animal studies were limited to reduced feed intake and reduced growth.

Some differences between control and Benzyl Alcohol-treated populations were noted in one reproductive toxicity study using mice, but these were limited to lower maternal body weights and decreased mean litter weights. Another study also noted that fetal weight was decreased compared to controls, but a third study showed no differences between control and Benzyl Alcohol-treated groups.

Benzoic Acid was associated with an increased number of resorptions and malformations in hamsters, but there were no reproductive or developmental toxicty findings in studies using mice and rats exposed to Sodium Benzoate, and, likewise, Benzoic Acid was negative in two rat studies.

Genotoxicity tests for these ingredients were mostly negative, but there were some assays that were positive. Carcinogenicity studies, however, were negative. Clinical data indicated that these ingredients can produce nonimmunologic contact urticaria and nonimmunologic immediate contact reactions, characterized by the appearance of wheals, erythema, and pruritus.

In one study, 5% Benzyl Alcohol elicited a reaction, and in another study, 2% Benzoic Acid did likewise. Benzyl Alcohol, however, was not a sensitizer at 10%, nor was Benzoic Acid a sensitizer at 2%. Recognizing that the nonimmunologic reactions are strictly cutaneous, likely involving a cholinergic mechanism, it was concluded that these ingredients could be used safely at concentrations up to 5%, but that manufacturers should consider the nonimmunologic phenomena when using these ingredients in cosmetic formulations designed for infants and children.

  • Additionally, Benzyl Alcohol was considered safe up to 10% for use in hair dyes.
  • The limited body exposure, the duration of use, and the frequency of use were considered in concluding that the nonimmunologic reactions would not be a concern.
  • Because of the wide variety of product types in which these ingredients may be used, it is likely that inhalation may be a route of exposure.
See also:  Can Dogs Have Alcohol?

The available safety tests are not considered sufficient to support the safety of these ingredients in formulations where inhalation is a route of exposure. Inhalation toxicity data are needed to complete the safety assessment of these ingredients where inhalation can occur.

Is benzyl alcohol toxic in skincare?

As a volatile alcohol, it can pose a risk of sensitivity when used in high amounts but is considered safe as used in cosmetics (usually in concentrations up to 5%, and it may be used up to 10% in hair dyes).

Is benzyl alcohol a health hazard?

The following acute (short-term) health effects may occur immediately or shortly after exposure to alpha-Methylbenzyl Alcohol: * Contact can severely irritate and burn the skin and eyes with possible eye damage. * Breathing alpha-Methylbenzyl Alcohol can irritate the nose and throat causing coughing and wheezing.

How long to leave benzyl alcohol in hair?

Uses – This is used to treat, tiny insects that live on and irritate your scalp.This drug is not recommended for use in children younger than 6 months. Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your before you start using benzyl alcohol and each time you get a refill.

  1. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
  2. This is for use on the and scalp only.
  3. Use this medication as directed by your doctor, usually for 2 treatments, one week apart.
  4. Since this medication does not get rid of the eggs, it is important to have the second treatment to treat any that might have hatched.

To help you remember, mark the date on the calendar when you need to use this medication again. An adult should help you apply this medication. Cover your with a towel and keep your tightly closed while the medication is being applied. The medication should be applied to and enough medication should be used to cover your entire scalp and (including behind the ears and on the back of the neck).

  • The medication into your hair and scalp.
  • Avoid getting the medication in your,, nose, or,
  • If the medicine gets in any of these areas, flush with plenty of water.
  • Leave the medication on your hair as directed by your doctor, usually for 10 minutes, then rinse with water.
  • After using this medication.
  • You can shampoo your hair right after treatment.

A fine- comb or lice comb may be used afterward to help remove the treated lice and lice eggs (nits). Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

Is benzyl benzoate safe for hair?

More safety Information: – CIR Safety Review: The CIR Expert Panel noted that no adverse effects of Benzyl Alcohol were seen in chronic oral exposure studies. Effects of Benzoic Acid and Sodium Benzoate in chronic oral exposure studies were limited to reduced feed intake and reduced growth. At doses used in cosmetics and personal care products, the CIR Expert Panel was not concerned about potential reproductive and developmental effects.

  1. The CIR Expert Panel reviewed data that indicated that inhalation exposure to Benzyl Alcohol and Benzoic Acid did not result in adverse effects.
  2. Although, genotoxicity tests for these ingredients were mostly negative, there were some assays that were positive.
  3. Carcinogenicity studies, however, were negative.

Clinical data indicated that in a few individuals these ingredients produced non-immunologic contact urticaria and non-immunologic immediate contact reactions, characterized by the appearance of wheals, erythema, and pruritis. In one study, 5% Benzyl Alcohol elicited a reaction, and in another study, 2% Benzoic Acid did likewise.

Benzyl Alcohol, however, was not a sensitizer at 10%, nor was Benzoic Acid a sensitizer at 2%. Recognizing that the non-immunologic reactions were strictly cutaneous, likely involve a cholinergic mechanism, it was concluded that these ingredients could be used safely at concentrations up to 5%. Additionally, Benzyl Alcohol was considered safe at up to 10% for use in hair dyes.

The limited body exposure, the duration of use, and the frequency of use were considered in concluding that the non-immunologic reactions would not be a concern. Link to FDA Code of Federal Regulations and the Federal Register for Benzoic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Benzyl Alcohol and Benzyl Benzoate

Benzoic Acid Sodium Benzoate Benzyl Alcohol Local Anesthetic Active Ingredients Oral Healthcare Drug OTC External Analgesic Drug Products

Benzyl Alcohol may be used as a preservative in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in the European Union at a maximum concentration of 1%. Benzoic Acid and its salts and esters are also permitted for use as preservatives in cosmetics and personal care products at a maximum concentration (expressed as the acid) of 2.5% in rinse-off products (except oral care products), 1.7% in oral care products and 0.5% in leave on products (see Annex VI).

  1. Benzyl Alcohol and Benzyl Benzoate are also listed in in Annex III of the European Union Cosmetics Directive.
  2. When Benzyl Alcohol or Benzyl Benzaote are used as fragrance ingredients, Annex III requires that the presence of these fragrance ingredients be indicated on the label of the product when used at greater than 0.001% in leave-on products, and greater than 0.01% in rinse-off products.

The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives has established an Acceptable Daily Intake of 0-5 mg/kg for the sum of Benzoic Acid, Potassium and Sodium Benzoate. More information about the safety of fragrances,

Which alcohol is best for hair growth?

4. Vodka For Hair Growth – You Will Need

  • 10 mL Vodka
  • 60 mL Shampoo

Processing Time 5 minutes Process

  1. Pour the ingredients in a shampoo dispenser and shake well to combine.
  2. Wash your hair as you normally would with this vodka-shampoo mixture.
  3. Let your hair air-dry.

How Often? Once a week. Why This Works Vodka stimulates hair growth as it cleanses the scalp and boosts the blood circulation,

Does benzyl alcohol get rid of lice?

Prescription Medications – The following medications, in alphabetical order, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of head lice are available only by prescription. Always follow the instructions of your health care provider when administering these medications. If crawling lice are still seen after a full course of treatment, contact your health care provider.

  • Benzyl alcohol lotion, 5%; Brand name product: Ulesfia lotion *Benzyl alcohol is an aromatic alcohol. Benzyl alcohol lotion, 5% has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of head lice and is considered safe and effective when used as directed. It kills lice but it is not ovicidal. A second treatment is needed 7 days after the first treatment to kill any newly hatched lice before they can produce new eggs. Benzyl alcohol lotion is intended for use on persons who are 6 months of age and older and its safety in persons aged more 60 years has not been established. It can be irritating to the skin.
  • Ivermectin lotion, 0.5%; Brand name product: Sklice *Ivermectin lotion, 0.5% was approved by the FDA in 2012 for treatment of head lice in persons 6 months of age and older. It is not ovicidal, but appears to prevent nymphs (newly hatched lice) from surviving. It is effective in most patients when given as a single application on dry hair without nit combing. It should not be used for retreatment without talking to a healthcare provider.Given as a tablet in mass drug administrations, oral ivermectin has been used extensively and safely for over two decades in many countries to treat filarial worm infections. Although not FDA-approved for the treatment of lice, ivermectin tablets given in a single oral dose of 200 micrograms/kg or 400 micrograms/kg repeated in 9-10 days has been shown effective against head lice. It should not be used in children weighing less than 15 kg or in pregnant women.
  • Malathion lotion, 0.5%; Brand name product: Ovide *Malathion is an organophosphate. The formulation of malathion approved in the United States for the treatment of head lice is a lotion that is safe and effective when used as directed. Malathion is pediculicidal (kills live lice) and partially ovicidal (kills some lice eggs). A second treatment is recommended if live lice still are present 7–9 days after treatment. Malathion is intended for use on persons 6 years of age and older. Malathion can be irritating to the skin. Malathion lotion is flammable; do not smoke or use electrical heat sources, including hair dryers, curlers, and curling or flat irons, when applying malathion lotion and while the hair is wet. More on: Malathion
  • Spinosad 0.9% topical suspension; Brand name product: Natroba *Spinosad is derived from soil bacteria. Spinosad topical suspension, 0.9%, was approved by the FDA in 2011. Since it kills live lice as well as unhatched eggs, retreatment is usually not needed. Nit combing is not required. Spinosad topical suspension is approved for the treatment of children 6 months of age and older. It is safe and effective when used as directed. Repeat treatment should be given only if live (crawling) lice are seen 7 days after the first treatment.

For second–line treatment only:

Lindane shampoo 1%; Brand name products: None available Lindane is an organochloride. The American Academy of Pediatrics external icon (AAP) no longer recommends it as a pediculicide. Although lindane shampoo 1% is approved by the FDA for the treatment of head lice, it is not recommended as a first–line treatment. Overuse, misuse, or accidentally swallowing lindane can be toxic to the brain and other parts of the nervous system; its use should be restricted to patients for whom prior treatments have failed or who cannot tolerate other medications that pose less risk. Lindane should not be used to treat premature infants, persons with HIV, a seizure disorder, women who are pregnant or breast–feeding, persons who have very irritated skin or sores where the lindane will be applied, infants, children, the elderly, and persons who weigh less than 110 pounds. Retreatment should be avoided.

Back to Top When treating head lice

  1. Do not use extra amounts of any lice medication unless instructed to do so by your physician and pharmacist. The drugs used to treat lice are insecticides and can be dangerous if they are misused or overused.
  2. All the medications listed above should be kept out of the eyes. If they get onto the eyes, they should be immediately flushed away.
  3. Do not treat an infested person more than 2–3 times with the same medication if it does not seem to be working. This may be caused by using the medicine incorrectly or by resistance to the medicine. Always seek the advice of your health care provider if this should happen. He/she may recommend an alternative medication.
  4. Do not use different head lice drugs at the same time unless instructed to do so by your physician and pharmacist.
  5. The AAP recommends external icon rinsing all topical pediculicides from the hair over a sink, rather than in the shower or bath to limit skin exposure, and to use warm water rather than hot water to minimize absorption.

Back to Top *Use of trade names is for identification purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the Public Health Service or by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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