Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract

What Is It?

Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract is an extract of the roots Panax quinquefolium, also called American ginseng. This plant is closely related to Panax ginseng, also called Chinese ginseng. The composition of the roots of the two ginseng species is similar. In cosmetics and personal care products, Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract may be used in bath products, eye makeup, face makeup, hair coloring product, and skin and hair care products.

Why Is It Used?

In cosmetics and personal care products, Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract functions as a cosmetic astringent.

Scientific Facts

Panax quinquefolium, also called Panax quinquefolius is a flowering plant native to eastern North America. Because of over-harvesting and loss of habitat it is now rare in the wild. Panax quinquefolium is cultivated in the United States, Canada and Asia for its use in dietary supplements and herbal medicines.

Safety Information

The safety of Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract has been assessed by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated the scientific data and concluded that this ingredient was safe as used in cosmetics and personal care products. Plant derived ingredients used in the formulation of cosmetics are generally mild and safe. Prior to marketing the finished cosmetic product, the safety of each ingredient must be substantiated in accordance with 21 CFR 740.10. Safety substantiation of cosmetic ingredients may include tests for ocular and skin irritation as well as allergenicity, phototoxicity, photoallergenicity and mutagenicity, depending on the application or intended use. There is a considerable body of information about the safety of botanical ingredients and a well-established history of use. These resources are constituted to ensure the safety of these materials as they are used in cosmetics.

CIR Safety Review:

The CIR Expert Panel reviewed data that indicated limited absorption of ginseng saponins, which are a main component of ingredients made from Panax quinquefolium roots. Safety data reviewed by the CIR Expert Panel indicated that preparations from the roots of the related plant Panax ginseng were not developmental toxicants or genotoxic. A study completed by the National Toxicology Program provided no evidence of a carcinogenic effect of a Panax ginseng root extract. Dermal studies indicated that ingredients derived from Panax ginseng and Panax quinquefolium roots were not irritants or sensitizers.

Based on the data reviewed, the CIR Expert Panel concluded that Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract was safe as used in cosmetics and personal care products. Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract may be used in cosmetics and personal care products marketed in Europe according to the general provisions of the Cosmetics Regulation of the European Union.

Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation:

In selecting plant-derived ingredients for cosmetics and personal care products, formulators rely on the extensive history of their preparation and use. Such materials have been used for a long time and, based upon this experience; extensive knowledge of their safety has been gained. In the situation of newly identified botanicals in the cosmetic industry, appropriate ocular and skin safety studies are conducted prior to release into general commerce. There are many different references that describe the preparation, use and safety of botanical preparations.

More information about botanical ingredients.

More Scientific Information

Panax Quinquefolium Root Extract belongs to a large and diverse class of materials that are not defined chemically. The majority of the materials in this class are mixtures derived from plants (herbs, roots, flowers, fruits or seeds). In naming plants, botanists use a Latin name made up of the genus and species of the plant. For example, under this system the plant, American ginseng is known as Panax quinquefolium or quiquefolius L. where L. stands for Linnaeus, the person who first described the type of specimen. Plants are also known by a common name that has been handed down through generations. These common names may vary from country to country. Therefore, Latin names, which are more likely to be recognized in many countries, are frequently used on the label of a product to identify an ingredient made from plants.


Cross Reference for Common Names and Latin names for Botanical ingredient:…

Find out more about the history of using plants to obtain beneficial materials:

Search the Code of Federal Regulations

EU Cosmetics Inventory