Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate

What Is It?

Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, also known as IPBC, is a white or slightly off-white crystalline powder that contains iodine. It is used in a wide variety of cosmetics and personal-care products

Why Is It Used?

Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate prevents or retards bacterial growth, thereby protecting cosmetics and personal-care products from spoilage.

Follow this link for more information about how preservatives protect cosmetics and personal care products.

Scientific Facts

Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate is an internationally recognized preservative that has been used for years because of a wide field of application. The need for a broad-spectrum and safe preservative system for cosmetics has led to the development of several combinations of IPBC with other preservatives effective against a wide variety of organisms. IPBC is also used as a preservative in household products, paints, cements and inks.

Safety Information

The safety of Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate has been assessed by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated the scientific data and concluded that Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate was safe as a cosmetic ingredient at concentrations less than or equal to 0.1%. Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate should not be used in products intended to be aerosolized.

CIR Safety Review: The CIR Expert Panel noted the low degree of sensitization observed in some studies and acknowledged the mild dermal irritation potential of Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate at concentrations of 0.5% and above. Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate was negative in tests for mutagenicity, carcinogenicity and reprodutive and developmental toxicity.

The CIR Expert Panel expressed concern about inhalation toxicity with Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate and thereby concluded that it should not be included in cosmetics and personal-care products meant to be aerosolized.

Because the highest concentration tested for comedogenicity was 0.1%, the CIR Expert Panel considered that concentration to be the highest for which the available data would support safety. The use of Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate in cosmetics in the European Union is subject to the restrictions described in Annex VI, Part I of the Cosmetics Directive.

This preservative may be used in cosmetics and personal care products at a maximum concentration of 0.02% in rinse-off products, and at 0.01% in leave-on products, except in deodorant/antiperspirant products in which the limit is 0.0075%. Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate is not to be used for oral hygiene and lip-care products, or in products intended to be used on a large part of the body, such as body lotion.

With the exception of bath products and shampoo Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate should not be used in products intended for children under 3 years of age.

Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation:…

More Scientific Information

Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate functions as a preservative in cosmetics and personal-care products. Preservatives are ingredients that prevent or retard microbial growth and thus protect cosmetic products from spoilage. Since some cosmetic products may support the growth of microorganisms, the use of preservatives is required to prevent product damage caused by microorganisms and to protect the product from inadvertent contamination by the consumer during use. Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate is especially effective in preventing the growth of fungi in cosmetics.


The European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Cosmetic Products and Non-Food Products Intended for Consumers’ opinion on Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate

Search the Code of Federal Regulations

EU Cosmetics Inventory