May 20, 2014
Alternative for Potentially Hazardous Products
Product Category: Cosmetics
1. Organic Chemicals used in Cosmetics:
The first organic chemical that I researched that is in cosmetics is 2,6-bis(1,1-dimethylethyl)-4-methylphenol (IUPAC name), or more commonly known as butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT). The organic compound BHT is most often used in lipsticks and moisturizers, and is also used in smaller quantities is several other cosmetics.
The second organic chemical that I researched that is in cosmetics is 2,2'-Iminodiethanol (IUPAC name), or more commonly known as diethanolamine (DEA). It is mainly found in moisturizers and sunscreens. Compounds of of DEA like cocamide and lauramide DEA are found in soaps, cleansers, and shampoos.
The third organic chemical that I researched that is in cosmetics is dibutyl phthalate (DBP). Its main use is in nail products, while phthalates in general are also as fragrance agents in several other cosmetics.
2. Chemical Structure and Description:
>The chemical formula for BHT is C15H24O, with a molecular weight (molar mass) of 220.35 g/mol. The structure is:
The reason for the use of BHT is because it is a synthetic antioxidant that acts as a preservative. >The chemical formula for DEA is C4H11NO2, with a molecular weight (molar mass) of 105.14 g/mol. The structure is:
The reason for the use of DEA is because it makes the texture of cosmetics sudsy or creamy, while also acting as a pH adjuster. It does this by counteracting the acidity of other ingredients in the cosmetic. >The chemical formula for DBP is C16H22O4, with a molecular weight (molar mass) of 278.35 g/mol. It is also known as “di-n-butyl phthalate”. The structure is: The reason for the use of DBP is because it acts a solvent for dyes and as a plasticizer. This stops nail polishes from becoming brittle. 3. Health Effects: >First of all, BHT can activate allergic reactions in the skin . Long-term exposure to high doses of BHT to mice and rats proved to be toxic. It causes liver, thyroid and kidney problems, as well as affects lung function and blood coagulation. In certain situations, BHT can even acts as a tumour promoter. Although there is only limited evidence, research suggests that high doses of BHT may even mimic estrogen, and prevent expression of male sex hormones. This results in adverse reproductive effects.
> First of all, DEA and compounds of DEA can cause mild to moderate skin and eye irritation . Also, in lab experiments, exposure to high doses of DEA it has been detected that it has the potential to cause liver cancers and precancerous changes in the skin as well as the thyroid. DEA is even classified as harmful on the basis of danger of serious damage to health from prolonged exposure by The European Union. DEA compounds can also react with the nitrites added to cosmetics to form nitrosamines. The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies these a possible human carcinogen.
> First of all, DBP is absorbed through the skin, having the capability to augment the capacity of other chemicals to cause genetic mutations, although it is yet to be proven as a mutagen itself. In lab experiments, DBP has been proven to cause several reproductive effects. These effects include: developmental defects, changes in the testes and prostate, and reduced sperm counts. DBP is classified as a suspected endocrine disruptor by The European Union. This classification was determined on the premise of confirmation that it interferes with hormone function, and as toxic to reproduction on the theory that it may cause harm to the unborn child and impair fertility. As well, Health Canada notes evidence implying that being exposed to phthalates in general may cause severe health effects. When products with phthalates in them are chewed or sucked for prolonged periods of time, liver and kidney failure in young…