Anise Alcohol

What Is It?

Anise Alcohol, also called anisyl alcohol, is a colorless to slightly yellow liquid having a pleasant floral odor. In cosmetics and personal care products, Anise Alcohol is used in skin care products.

Why Is It Used?

Anise Alcohol is used as a fragrance ingredient.

Scientific Facts

Anise Alcohol is found naturally in the plant Pimpinella anisum, also called anise or sweet cumin. It is also made synthetically.

Safety Information

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) includes Anise Alcohol on its list of flavoring agents permitted for direct addition to food. The safety of Anise Alcohol has been evaluated by the Research Institute for Fragrance Materials Expert Panel (REXPAN). Based on this evaluation, an International Fragrance Association (IFRA) Standard has been established. The IFRA Standard restricts the use of Anise Alcohol in fragrances because of potential sensitization.

Link to the IFRA Standards:

The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) defers review of individual fragrance ingredients to the IFRA program unless the ingredient has significant uses other than as a fragrance. In this case, the ingredient may be assessed by both the CIR Expert Panel and REXPAN.

Link to FDA Code of Federal Regulations for Anise Alcohol:…

The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) concluded that Anise Alcohol does not present a safety concern at current levels of intake when used as a flavoring agent.

Link to the JECFA safety evaluation of Anisyl Alcohol:

The Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association Expert Panel has reviewed the safety of Anise Alcohol and determined that it was Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) for use as a flavoring substance. In Europe, Anise Alcohol is included on the list of “allergenic” substances. The European Cosmetics Regulation requires manufacturers of cosmetics and personal care products to indicate the presence of certain “allergenic” substances in the list of ingredients if they are present above certain levels in the product (see Annex III). The presence of Anise Alcohol must be indicated in the list of ingredients when its concentration exceeds: 0.001% in leave-on the skin products 0.01% in products that are rinsed off the skin.

Link to the EU Cosmetics Directive:…

More information about the safety of fragrances.

More Scientific Information

Anise Alcohol, also called anisyl alcohol or 4-methoxybenzyl alcohol, is an organic compound.


Find out more about the regulation of Food Additives by the Food and Drug Administration

Food Ingredients and Packaging:

Food Contact Substances:

Substances Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS):

Link to the Research Institute for Fragrance Materials:

Search the FDA Code of Federal Regulations

EU Cosmetics Inventory