Cryptic Ingredients: Ethanolamine Compounds Typically Founds in Cosmetics

Have you loked at the listen ingredients in the back of any cosmetic product lately? the probability of finding more thana few ingredients/cehcmicals tha dont typiay ome upi  conversations is very lieky, and even thoguh these chemicls are prevaent in most ofthe cosmetics prducts bothadults  and childrens prducyst, the longtem adn acute effect can be very life threatening.

One family of cosmetics chemicals to watch out for is the Ethanolamine. All my chemistry lovers can identify at least 3 things from the name alone : 1)  It is an organic compound; contains carbon, 2) The  compound is an amine base structure,  and 3) The compound is also ethanol based. Ethanolamine is commonly called monoethanolamine (MEA) in order to be distinguished from diethanolamine (DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA). Ethanolamine is a toxic, flammable, corrosive, colorless, viscous liquid with an odor similar to that of ammonia.

Ethanolamines are present in many consumer products ranging from cosmetics, personal care products and household cleaning products. Both have been linked to liver tumors. The European Commission prohibits diethanolamine (DEA) in cosmetics, to reduce contamination from carcinogenic nitrosamines [1].

FOUND IN: Soaps, shampoos, hair conditioners and dyes, lotions, shaving creams, paraffin and waxes, household cleaning products, pharmaceutical ointments, eyeliners, mascara, eye shadows, blush, make-up bases, foundations, fragrances, sunscreens

WHAT TO LOOK FOR ON THE LABEL: Triethanolamine, diethanolamine, DEA, TEA, cocamide DEA, cocamide MEA, DEA-cetyl phosphate, DEA oleth-3 phosphate, lauramide DEA, linoleamide MEA, myristamide DEA, oleamide DEA, stearamide MEA, TEA-lauryl sulfate [2]

WHAT ARE ETHANOLAMINES? Diethanolamine (DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA) are key examples of ethanolamines—a chemical group comprised of amino acids (the building blocks of proteins) and alcohols. They are used in a wide range of applications including cosmetics and personal care products.MORE…

HEALTH CONCERNS: Cancer, environmental concerns (bioaccumulation), organ system toxicity


REGULATIONS: The European Commission prohibits DEA in cosmetics due to concerns about formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines

HOW TO AVOID? Read the labels on cosmetics, personal care products and household cleaning products, and avoid those containing with words DEA, TEA and MEA.

Reference Article here