Tag Archives: Methylisothiazolinone

Are Other People’s Perfumes A Problem?

There is an article I have seen posted on Facebook a couple of times that highlights the health risks of synthetic fragrance ingredients. I won’t link to it, but if I am seeing it there is a good chance you will have seen it too. The thesis it proposes is that synthetic chemicals in fragrances are toxic and might be dangerous to people who inhale them in public places, even if they aren’t actually wearing the fragrance themselves. Continue reading

The Epidemic of Methylisothiazolinone

three things you should know about scare stories

There’s a new paper out with some numbers from dermatology clinics about reactions to methylisothiazolinone (MI).  Dermatologists regularly patch test people to discover what they are allergic to.  This involves applying a set of common materials that tend to provoke allergic reactions to the skin, and seeing which ones the individual reacts to.   Continue reading

Colour Codes For Preservatives

Colour Codes For PreservativesAmong the many things I try to cram into my schedule is a newsletter for people with sensitive skin.  I am not very successful at doing this I am afraid, and I don’t get the newsletters out very frequently.  But despite this I get a steady stream of people talking to me about their issues with reactions to cosmetics.  In particular, to preservatives.  And particularly in particular to methylisothiazolinone. Continue reading

Does MI Cause Developmental Problems?

MI development problems

There are an interesting couple of points in the comments thread on my blog post asking for MI not to become a scare story, from Suzanne. She has drawn my attention to a paper from 2012 that details developmental problems in tadpoles exposed to MI. She concludes from this that MI is potentially unsafe for humans as well and asks what the liability is for companies that continue to use it now that this risk has been identified. Continue reading

L’Oréal Withdraws Product With Too Much MI In It

There is a news story that L’Oréal have issued a product recall for their Ideal Moisture Dry and Sensitive Day Cream in Canada. The reason is that the level of MI in it is higher than Health Canada’s regulations allow.   This is quite a rare event – big cosmetic companies are usually pretty good at following regulations.  Unfortunately Google has not revealed the details of just how much over they were.  But the product has been on the market for three years so there is a good chance that they have simply failed to keep up with the regulations and that the product was legal when formulated and launched.  They have shifted just under 60,000 units.   Continue reading

No Denmark, Methylisothiazolinone Should Not Be Banned

No Denmark, Methylisothiazolinone Should Not Be Banned

Denmark. Love the Lego, take issue with the regulatory approach.

Cosmetic Design Europe is reporting that the Danish Environment Minister Kirsten Brosbøl has called for methylisothiazolinone or MI to be banned across Europe.  I have to say I think this is a really bad idea, but I do see how she came to that conclusion.  Compared to other preservatives, MI does have a greater potential to cause allergic reactions when used at relatively high levels.  This was something that was noticed very quickly when it was brought out in the seventies.  But luckily there was a solution, because it is very effective and so it works at very low levels. Continue reading

Methylisothiazolinone – let’s not turn it into a scare story


Although it is a long way from being my most popular post, the one I get most comments on is my one on Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone free products.  These preservatives are used in a lot of products.  I doubt that anybody alive hasn’t come into contact with them.   Most people don’t have any issue with them, but a small proportion of people are allergic to one or other or both.  So if you sell large numbers of units, inevitably this leads to complaints. Continue reading

A Quick Tip for Methylisothiazolinone Free Hair Dye

I have had a couple of people asking me about methylisothiazolinone free hair dye.  The answer is that although I don’t know a lot about hair dyes, I don’t think that many of them contain methylisothiazolinone or methylchloroisothiazolinone in either the colour shade or the activator.  But quite a lot of them also include a conditioner, and this is often preservered with our troublesome friends.  Continue reading

Methylchloroisothiazolinone/Methylisothiazolinone (aka Kathon CG)

methylisothiazolinoneI don’t know many people who can actually say either of these names.  There are a number of acronyms used, but my favourite coping strategy is used by the owner of a small personal care company who simply refers to the combination as ‘methy whatsits’.  Now I’ve put that out there I hope you’ll join me in trying to make that the standard term for this preservative combination.   Continue reading