Ingredients

A child scientist looks at the molecular model
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Take a look inside the bottle

Our goal is to answer your questions about what’s in the products by providing ingredient information that is clear, reliable, and accessible. In other words, if you don’t find what you’re looking for here or on our brand sites, please let us know so that we can live up to our promise.

Ingredient choices and how we make them

The scientist tests the ingredients in the laboratory

Some people believe natural product ingredients are safer to use than man-made, synthetic ones. The reality is that it’s not that simple; both natural and synthetic ingredients have a safe range and an unsafe range.

That said, we know that some people prefer to use natural ingredients, so we are working to provide more products with elements that are naturally sourced. While natural product ingredients may be appealing, we also have to confirm they are safe to use in P&G products. Being natural alone doesn’t translate to being “safe”—even water and sunshine have safety limits.

Some people also expect that natural ingredients are more sustainable because they use less energy to source and require fewer resources. The reality is that the sustainable features of any product ingredient depend on the use, context, and energy consumption—in creating or harvesting it, as well as making or using it. Ultimately, we seek to source the best ingredients for our products so that you can use them with confidence. And we’re also doing the legwork to ensure we use the most sustainable and earth-friendly solutions.

Ingredients we do not use

  • Alkylphenols and alkylphenol ethoxylates
  • Benzene
  • Bisphenol A (not in formulas*)
  • Heavy metals: Arsenic, Lead, Chromium VI, Mercury, Cadmium, Nickel
  • Microbeads**
  • Organotins (TBT, DBT, MBT, DOT)
  • PVC (not in formulas*)
  • PAHs (Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons)
  • PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls)
  • Phthalates** (incl. perfume materials)
  • Triclosan
  • Triclocarban**

We have strict product safety limits in place when any of these materials could be found in tiny amounts due to their natural (or background) presence in water, the environment, or as part of the manufacturing process.

* We do not use BPA or PVC in any of our product formulas. Our use of PVC and BPA is restricted to very small amounts in some product packaging like pressurized aerosol cans or electrical devices where their unique performance is essential for product safety. We will consider new material options as soon as they do arise.
** We do not use these ingredients in new products and are exiting them. More details on our exit timings for these materials can be found in the Common Ingredient Questions section above.

Understanding common ingredients

Even though we ensure that our products are safe to use before they hit shelves, we know there’s a lot of conversation around certain product ingredients. Here's our point of view on them.

1,4-dioxane is not an ingredient, but rather a by-product that can form in tiny (trace) amounts when making a variety of products—and it’s most common with cleaning products. Importantly, the presence of 1,4-dioxane is already well below the safe limit in all our cleaning products. For example, if you washed and wore over 1,000 loads of laundry every day, you’d still be below the safe limit for 1,4-dioxane. Further, 1,4-dioxane is not easily absorbed by the skin and is also rapidly eliminated from the body, much like excess vitamins in our diet. Regardless, we’re continually working to reduce and/or eliminate it from our products, while still delivering the performance we all expect.

Phosphates are essential nutrients for plant growth and a healthy ecosystem. While phosphate is naturally present in the environment, it’s also released from foods and cleaning products after their use. We’ve removed phosphates from over 95% of our cleaning products already—and are working to eliminating the remaining 5% in the next few years.

You may have heard general safety questions about phthalates. There are several types of phthalates and each one is different (much like there are safe and unsafe types of mushrooms). We comply with all phthalate bans globally. In fact, we have removed the only phthalate that was used in our product fragrances even though agencies found it to be safe.

Triclosan and triclocarban are antimicrobial ingredients that slow or stop the growth of germs such as bacteria and mildew. We have already eliminated triclosan from our products globally and have an exit plan for our few remaining uses of triclocarban.

Microbeads are solid plastic particles of 5 mm or less and are used to exfoliate or cleanse in personal care products.

We previously included microbeads in some of our exfoliating cleansing products and toothpastes based on positive feedback from people who use them. Because microbeads are made from plastic, certain groups have questioned whether plastic found in our oceans and waterways is from microbeads. The science to date shows the breakdown of larger plastics to be the primary source of plastics in the ocean, not microbeads.

Now we have removed microbeads from all P&G facial/body cleansers and toothpaste formulas, so today the products we are manufacturing are microbead-free.

Preservatives (including parabens and others)

Preservatives help keep all of us safe by preventing growth of bacteria and mold during the use of consumer products. Different product types need different preservatives that work best for that particular formula. You can rest assured that all of our preservatives comply with applicable regulations and safe limits wherever they are sold.

Baby diapers & feminine hygiene Baby Wipes Air fresheners Health & oral care Laundry & household cleaning Hair care & personal cleaning Skin care leave on products
Benzoic acid contain contain contain contain contain
Benzyl alcohol contain contain
DMDM Hydantoin contain contain
Diazolidinyl urea (small number of products) contain
Imidazolidinyl urea (small number of products) contain
Quaternium-15 (small number of products) contain
Formic Acid contain contain
Glutaraldehyde contain contain
Iodopropynyl Butylcarbarnate contain contain
Isothiazolinones: Benzoisothiazolinone contain contain
Methylisothiazolinone contain contain
Methylchloroisothiazolinone contain contain
Parabens Methyl-, Ethyl-, Propyl- & Butylparaben contain contain contain
Phenoxyethanol contain contain contain
Salicylic Acid contain contain
Sorbic Acid contain

A small number of products require a different preservative not listed above, including potassium sorbate, benzalkonium chloride, dehydroaceticacid and chlorhexidine digluconate. They are indicated on the ingredient list in the product used.