What Is It?
Isopropyl Lanolate is a fatty substance that is used in the formulation of virtually every cosmetic and personal care product type but is most frequently found in makeup products such as lipstick, foundations, blushes, face powders, eye shadow and eyeliner.
Why Is It Used?
Isopropyl Lanolate holds together the ingredients of a compressed tablet or cake of powder. When used in lipstick, creams, lotions and aerosol emulsions, it acts as a lubricant on the skin surface, which gives the skin a glossy, soft, smooth appearance.
Isopropyl Lanolate is produced from lanolin, which is isolated from the wool of sheep. Lanolin is secreted by the sebaceous gland of sheep onto the wool to help make the wool waterproof. Isopropyl Lanolate is one of the most versatile of the lanolin-derived ingredients and has been used in cosmetics and personal care products, as well as in pharmaceuticals, for over 20 years.
The safety of Isopropyl Lanolate has been assessed by 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) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated the scientific data and concluded that Isopropyl Lanolate was safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products. In 2001, the CIR Expert Panel considered available new data on Isopropyl Lanolate and reaffirmed the above conclusion.
CIR Review: The CIR Expert Panel noted that Isopropyl Lanolate is used in many types of cosmetics and personal care products. Isopropyl Lanolate is not irritating to the skin. Although most people do not develop sensitization to Isopropyl Lanolate, the CIR Expert Panel expressed some concern about the occurrence in one study of skin sensitization in two out of 53 subjects tested and suggested that the industry remain vigilant in monitoring the skin sensitizing potential of this ingredient. Human patch testing with cosmetic formulations containing 6 and 14% Isopropyl Lanolate were very slightly irritating and none of the three formulations caused allergic contact sensitization. Isopropyl Lanolate that complies with the animal by-products regulations, may be used in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in Europe according to the Under the general provisions of the cosmetics regulation of the EU, ingredients appearing on the following function-specific annexes must comply with the listed restrictions and/or specifications: colorants (Annex IV), preservatives (Annex V), UV filters (Annex VI) and other ingredients with specific concentration limits and/or other restrictions (Annex III). Ingredients specifically prohibited from use in cosmetic products are listed in Annex II. Other ingredients listed in the EU cosmetic ingredient database (CosIng) may be used without restrictions..
Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation:
More Scientific Information
Isopropyl Lanolate is a mixture of isopropyl esters of lanolin acids, which are derived from natural lanolin obtained from the wool of sheep. Isopropyl Lanolate is used as a Ingredients that hold together the ingredients of a compressed tablet or cake. and a skin conditioning agent – emollient in cosmetics and personal care products.
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/