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October 1988

The Allergens in Cosmetics

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Dermatology, Carolus and Willem-Alexander Hospital, 's-Hertogenbosch (Dr de Groot); Free University Academic Hospital, Amsterdam (Dr Bruynzeel); Academisch Medisch Centrum, University of Amsterdam (Dr Bos); Diaconessenhuis, Eindhoven (Dr van der Meeren); Academic Hospital Dijkzigt, Rotterdam (Dr van Joost); St Maartensgasthuis, Venlo (Dr Jagtman); and Department of Cosmetics, Food Inspection Service, Enschede (Dr Weyland), the Netherlands.

Arch Dermatol. 1988;124(10):1525-1529. doi:10.1001/archderm.1988.01670100027007

• The ingredients responsible for allergy to cosmetics were determined in 119 patients suffering from cosmeticrelated contact dermatitis. Most reactions (56.3%) were caused by skin care products, followed by nail cosmetics (13.4%), perfumes (8.4%), and hair cosmetics (5.9%). Preservatives were most frequently implicated (32.0%), followed by fragrances (26.5%) and emulsifiers (14.3%). By far the most important cosmetic allergen was Kathon CG, (a preservative system containing, as active ingredients, a mixture of methylisothiazolinone and methylchloroisothiazolinone) reacting in 33 patients (27.7%). Other frequent causes of cosmetic-related contact allergic reactions were toluenesulfonamide/formaldehyde resin in nail hardener and/or nail lacquer (15 patients [12.6%]), and oleamidopropyl dimethylamine, an emulsifier in baby body lotion (13 patients [10.9%]).

(Arch Dermatol 1988;124:1525-1529)

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