Propanediol is an organic solvent derived from corn that usually appears in the form of a thick clear liquid. We use this plant-based ingredient in some of our products as a humectant or stabilizer, to improve their performance.
Propanediol can be produced through fermentation of plant glucose (corn sugars) by certain types of bacteria. It's a useful ingredient thanks to its low sensitization, and ability to boost the efficacy of preservatives - reducing the amount required. We use propanediol in some of our personal care products as a humectant, helping the products retain their moisture content and consistency. In some of our enzyme-containing laundry products, propanediol is also used as a stablizer to help prevent the separation of ingredients over time, improving overall cleaning performance.
Propanediol was assessed by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel in 2018, who reviewed its safety for dermal exposure in cosmetics and concluded it is “safe in cosmetics in the present practices of use and concentration described in this safety assessment.” It's also listed by the European Chemical Agency (ECHA) as being readily biodegradable, with low aquatic toxicity.
Other names: C3H8O2; 1,3-Propanediol; 1,3-Propylene Glycol
Chemical class: Alcohols
Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel. (2018). Safety Assessment of Alkane Diols as Used in Cosmetics. https://www.cir-safety.org/sites/default/files/aldiol032018FR.pdf
European Chemicals Agency (2022). Propane-1,3-diol. EC number: 207-997-3 | CAS number: 504-63-2. https://echa.europa.eu/registration-dossier/-/registered-dossier/2099/6/1
National Center for Biotechnology Information (2022). PubChem Compound Summary for CID 10442, 1,3-Propanediol. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/1_3-Propanediol