Toxic Antimicrobials & Preservatives

Toxic antimicrobials and preservatives are used to prevent the growth of microorganisms, but are dangerous to 'good' as well as 'bad' organisms.

Alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride Vapors are irritating to the eyes Corrosive to the skin Skin sensitizer Limited biodegradability Toxic to aquatic life

C 12-15 pareth ethylbenzene sulfonate Limited biodegradability Toxic to aquatic life

Dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride Irritating to eyes, skin, and lungs May be fatal if ingested

DMDM hydantoin Irritating to eyes and lungs Considered an allergen Forms and releases formaldehyde

Methylisothiazolinone Corrosive to skin Skin sensitizer Toxic to aquatic life Persists long-term in the environment

Phenoxyethanol Causes kidney, liver and nervous system toxicity Severe skin and eye irritant

Sodium bisulfite Skin and eye irritant Biodegradable, but products of degradation are toxic to the environment and human health Commonly used in detergents, dish soap, and personal care products

Sodium hypochlorite hypochlorous-acid Severe skin, eye and lung irritant Corrosive to lungs Suspected carcinogen Labeled as chlorine bleach

Sodium percarbonate Irritating to eyes and skin at high concentrations Toxic to aquatic life A type of oxygen bleach

Triclosan Irritating to eyes and skin Known to pass through breast milk Moderate build-up in living organisms Persists in the environment Very toxic to aquatic life Very common in hand creams, and cleaning liquids labeled as sanitizers or disinfectants. Can also be integrated into hard surfaces - be careful of plastic labeled as self-sanitizing.

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