2019-04-30

Health alert: all products that still contain phenoxyethanol

Health alert: all products that still contain phenoxyethanol.

Phenoxyethanol is an organic aromatic compound widely used in cosmetics and baby products. In France, therefore, in order to safeguard the health of children, ANSM, the Agence française de sécurité sanitaire des produits de santé, has imposed an obligation on manufacturers to not use them on children under the age of three on moisturising creams and wipes for babies containing this substance.

Notice of non-use

"This product shall not be used on the buttocks of children under 3 years of age." This is therefore the famous wording that will soon have to be present on the packaging of cosmetics intended for early childhood and containing phenoxyethanol.

Manufacturers will thus have only 9 months to put a notice on the packaging not to use the product on children under 3 years of age. France therefore takes a very specific position with regard to the European regulation allowing the presence of phenoxyethanol at a maximum concentration of 1% in cosmetics for adults and children. However, the objective is to reduce the limit for non-rinse products intended for children to 0.4%.

The dangers of phenoxyethanol

Scientific studies have shown that this substance could be toxic to such an extent that it alters reproduction and development. In fact, this is research carried out exclusively on animals, but it should not be underestimated. France, for this very reason, has said no to any product that contains phenoxyethanol. On the other hand, it said yes to the alternatives already on the market for phenoxyethanol-free products.

But which manufacturers and products still contain phenoxyethanol?

On the basis of some tests and an overview of the French market (very similar to the Italian one), the well-known magazine "60 millions de consommateurs" indicates the following brands and products for children that still today, unfortunately, contain phenoxyethanol:

Nivea baby: moisturizing face and body cream

Nivea baby: moisturizing soft cream

Nivea baby: moisturizing cleansing milk

Nivea baby: milk for the bath

Baby Nivea: soft wipes and cream

Lupilu (Lidl): sensitive wipes

Lupilu (Lidl): Comfort baby wipes

Mixa baby L'Oréal: ultra-soft wipes with milk for toilets

As for the L'Oréal group, it has communicated with great reassurance that the Mixa wipes will be the last product containing phenoxyethanol in their catalogue. In fact, an alternative product will soon replace the wipes mentioned above with something unique and highly safe for the health of the child.

Lucia Franco

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