Chemical Awareness: 1,4 Dioxane

Chemical Awareness: 1,4 Dioxane

1,4-Dioxane is an industrial solvent and stabilizer, used in the manufacturing of most household products. 1,4-Dioxane is rarely listed on ingredient labels, but can be found in the following products:

  • Cleaning products (e.g. bleach, detergent, body wash, shampoo)
  • Paints, dyes, fragrances
  • Pesticides, antifreeze
  • Toys and plastics

It has been estimated that on average a person is exposed to over 22mg each year [1]. Concern has been raised about the health implications for chronic exposure.

1,4-Dioxane is so widely used because it’s highly soluble in water, and so can be used to ‘dissolve’ ingredients that normally wouldn’t mix together. 

BUT, there is no practical use for 1,4-Dioxane in cleaning products and it's presence does not have any effect on how well a cleaning product removes dirt and stains. That being said, it is used to make ingredients that are more than likely in your cleaning & personal care products such as SLS or SLES. And it may be detectable in those ingredients if they are contaminated.

Little is known about long-term exposure to lower concentrations of 1,4-dioxane. So we need to demand that companies REMOVE this from their products.

Let's not risk it.

 Here at Bear Minimum, we did the work for you. With a wide array of laundry detergent options , we can offer you better solutions.



Check out this guide of some regularly used products and their 1,4 Dioxane PPB ratings. 




Further Reading:




[1] Tanabe, A., & Kawata, K. (2008). Determination of 1, 4-dioxane in household detergents and cleaners. Journal of AOAC International, 91(2), 439-444.

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