What Is It?
Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is a clear liquid that is insoluble in water. Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is used in the formulation of a wide variety of product types including sunscreens and makeup products that contain ingredients to protect the skin from the sun. In the United States, these products are regulated as Over-the-Counter (OTC) drugs.
Why Is It Used?
Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate or Octinoxate is used in products that are applied to the skin to absorb, reflect or scatter UV rays. This serves to protect the skin from sunburn as well as other damaging effects of the sun. Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate also protects cosmetics and personal care products from deterioration caused by UV rays. When used to protect the product, this ingredient is called Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate.
UV light has a wavelength shorter than visible light. Prolonged exposure to UV light may result in health effects in the skin, eye and immune system. UV light damages collagen and contributes to aging of skin. Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate) can help protect against sunburn and other skin damage caused by UV light by absorbing UV radiation.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conducted an OTC drug review of Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (also called Octyl Methoxycinnamate) and approved the use of this ingredient as an active ingredient in sunscreen products up to a concentration of 7.5%. When used as an active ingredient in an OTC sunscreen product, this ingredient will be listed on the label as Octinoxate. The The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) was established in 1976 as an independent safety review program for cosmetic ingredients. The CIR Expert Panel consists of independent experts in dermatology, toxicology, pharmacolgy and veterinary medicine. The CIR includes participation by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and the Consumer Federation of America. (CIR) has deferred evaluation of this ingredient because the safety has been assessed by FDA. This deferral of review is according to the provisions of the CIR Procedures.
In the United States, when used as an OTC sunscreen ingredient, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate) must conform to the specifications provided in the U.S. Pharmacopeia.
Link to the Code of Federal Regulations for Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr…
Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is listed as Octyl Methoxycinnamate in Annex VII, Part I (UV filters are ingredients that filter certain UV rays that are found in sunlight and, to a lesser degree, artificial light. UV filter is a general term that is used for sunscreen agents, ingredients used to protect the skin from UV rays, and ultraviolet light absorbers, ingredients use to protect products, packaging and hair from UV rays. which cosmetics products may contain) of the Cosmetics Directive of the European Union and may be used at a maximum concentration of 10%, including sunscreen products.
Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/consumers/product_labelling_and_packaging/co0013_en.htm
There are studies that suggest that some sunscreen ingredients, including Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate may have activity like the hormone, estrogen. Therefore, the European Commission’s Scientific Committee for Cosmetic Products and Non-Food Products Intended for Consumers (SCCNFP) was asked to consider if UV filters as used in sunscreen products have estrogenic effects which have the potential to affect human health. The SCCNFP concluded that UV filters used in sunscreen products allowed in the European market have no estrogenic effects that could potentially affect human health.
Link to SCCNFP opinion on the potential estrogenic effects of UV filters http://ec.europa.eu/health/ph_risk/committees/sccp/docshtml/sccp_out145_…
In Canada, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is permitted in sunscreen products at concentrations up to 8.5%.
More Scientific Information
Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is the An organic compound formed by the reaction of an acid with an alcohol. of 2-ethylhexyl Alcohols are a large class of important cosmetic ingredients but only ethanol needs to be denatured to prevent it from being redirected from cosmetic applications to alcoholic beverages. and methoxycinnamic acid. Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate) is used in cosmetics and personal care products as a Ingredients that are applied to the skin to absorb, to reflect, or to scatter UV rays. In the United States, sunscreen agents are regulated as Over-The-Counter (OTC) drug ingredients. to protect the skin, and as an Ingredients that protect cosmetic products or packaging from deterioration by absorbing, reflecting, or scattering UV rays. These ingredients may also be used to protect the hair from UV rays. See also UV Filters. to protect products.
Find out more about the regulation of over-the-counter drugs by the Food and Drug Administration
OTC Drug Home Page: http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/BuyingUsingMedicineSa…
Information about OTC Drug monographs: https://www.fda.gov/drugs/over-counter-otc-drug-monograph-process
Search the Code of Federal Regulations http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm
EU Cosmetics Inventory http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/cosmetics/cosing/