Sodium laureth sulfate is a member of a group of salts of sulfated ethoxylated alcohols, the safety of which was evaluated by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel for use in cosmetics. Sodium and ammonium laureth sulfate have not evoked adverse responses in any toxicological testing. Sodium laureth sulfate was demonstrated to be a dermal and ocular irritant but not a sensitizer. The Expert Panel recognized that there are data gaps regarding use and concentration of these ingredients. However, the overall information available on the types of products in which these ingredients are used and at what concentrations indicates a pattern of use. The potential to produce irritation exists with these salts of sulfated ethoxylated alcohols, but in practice they are not regularly seen to be irritating because of the formulations in which they are used. These ingredients should be used only when they can be formulated to be nonirritating.
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