Butylene and Propylene Glycol

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The Use and Safety of Butylene and Propylene Glycols in Nu Skin® Products

Quality control is crucial to any company that promotes products for better living. Nu Skin was founded on the desire to develop beneficial, effective, and safe cosmetics. Commitment to this belief means only ingredients that have been determined to be safe by major governmental and regulatory bodies are used. Nu Skin continues to monitor the latest research on ingredient safety to maintain the highest standard of safety and quality.


The scientific committees that review these studies in the United States and Europe are associated with organizations such as the European Commission Scientific Committee for Cosmetic Products and Non-Food Products (SCCNFP); Cosmetics, Toiletries, and Fragrance Association (CTFA); the European Cosmetic Toiletry and Perfumery Association (COLIPA); the Environmental Protection Agencies (EPA); the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); and the American Medical Association (AMA), to name a few. These review boards are made up of unbiased and qualified scientists and professionals that understand the methods of scientific research and are experts in their fields. These committees examine available studies on a given ingredient and determine human safety applications and environmental impact when used in cosmetics. The CTFA provides ingredient safety information to the cosmetic industry through the Cosmetic Ingredient Review board (CIR), a program established in 1976 to assess cosmetic ingredient safety in an unbiased, independent forum. The CIR is comprised of an expert panel of respected physicians and scientists. Nu Skin is a member of the Cosmetic Toiletries and Fragrance Association and respects CIR recommendations and findings.


Butylene Glycol
Butylene glycol is an organic molecule with two alcohol groups, used in cosmetics as a humectant to bind moisture and hold water to the skin. Alcohols are attracted to water; the smaller alcohols evaporate quickly, drawing water away from the skin, while larger organic alcohols do not evaporate as quickly and actually hold water to the skin.


According to the CIR panel, as printed in the Journal of the American College of Toxicology, butylene glycol is "safe as presently used in cosmetics." The report goes on to say that repeated insult patch tests on butylene glycol produced no evidence of skin sensitization.


Nu Skin utilizes small amounts of butylene glycol to benefit the formula and to provide skin conditioning and moisturizing properties to the skin. With the ingredient data currently available, Nu Skin feels confident in the safe and effective use of this ingredient.


Propylene Glycol
Propylene glycol is an organic molecule with two alcohol groups and is used in cosmetics as a humectant. It is the most common moisture-carrying vehicle other than water itself and helps prevent moisture loss in products as well as binding to moisture and holding it to the skin. Being a large organic alcohol, propylene glycol provides excellent moisturizing properties to the skin.


The Final Report of the CIR Expert Panel for Propylene Glycol as published in the Journal of American Toxicology (13(6): 437-491, 1994) concludes that propylene glycol is safe for use in cosmetic products at concentrations up to 50 percent. Propylene glycol is generally used in concentrations below 10 percent in cosmetic products. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the FDA have also classified propylene glycol as "generally recognized as safe" and even allows it to be used as a food additive.


Nu Skin is committed to providing its customers with the best and safest products. Having reviewed the latest research performed by the cosmetic industry, the FDA, and other qualified sources, we can assure our customers that butylene and propylene Glycols are safe and effective as humectants in Nu Skin® products.

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