What Is It?
Potassium Chloride, an inorganic salt, is a white, odorless solid that is soluble in water. It has a saline taste at low concentrations. In cosmetics and personal care products, it may be used in the formulation of bath products, cleansing products, eye makeup, skin care products, personal cleanliness products and hair care products.
Why Is It Used?
Potassium Chloride functions as a viscosity increasing agent – aqueous.
Potassium Chloride occurs naturally as sylvite, and it can be extracted from sylvinite. It is also extracted from salt water and can be manufactured by crystallization from solution, flotation or electrostatic separation from suitable minerals. Most Potassium Chloride is used for fertilizer products.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) includes Potassium Chloride on its list of direct food substances affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe (“GRAS” is an acronym for the phrase Generally Recognized As Safe. Under sections 201(s) and 409 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the Act), any substance that is intentionally added to food is a food additive, that is subject to premarket review and approval by FDA, unless the substance is generally recognized, among qualified experts, as having been adequately shown to be safe under the conditions of its intended use, or unless the use of the substance is otherwise excluded from the definition of a food additive.).
FDA: Link to Code of Federal Regulations for Potassium Chloride: http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr…
Potassium Chloride 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: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/consumers/product_labelling_and_packaging/co0013_en.htm
The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) reviewed the safety of Potassium Chloride as used as a Ingredients that impart a flavor or a taste to a product., a gelling agent and a food for yeast. They concluded that it was not necessary to establish an Acceptable Daily Intake for use of this ingredient in food.
Link to the JECFA safety evaluation of Potassium Chloride: http://www.inchem.org/documents/jecfa/jeceval/jec_1972.htm
As part of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) High Production Volume (HPV) chemical program, safety information available on Potassium Chloride was reviewed. Studies in this review indicated that Potassium Chloride was irritating to the skin at concentrations of 60%. Potassium Chloride was not a carcinogen or developmental toxicant. The reviewers recommended that no additional studies of Potassium Chloride be completed.
Link to the data summary on Potassium Chloride: http://www.inchem.org/documents/sids/sids/KCHLORIDE.pdf
More Scientific Information
Potassium Chloride is an essential component of the body. It helps control intracellular osmotic pressure, The basic structural and functional unit of all organisms; cells may exist as independent units of life or may form colonies or tissues as in higher plants and animals. permeability, acid-base balance, muscle contraction and nerve function.
Find out more about the regulation of Food Additives by the Food and Drug Administration
Food Ingredients and Packaging: http://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/default.htm
Food Contact Substances: http://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/PackagingFCS/default.htm
Substances Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS): http://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/GRAS/default.htm
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/