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The Cosmetic Toiletry & Perfumery Association, CTPA, has reported that a ban on MIT (methylisothiazolinone) in leave-on applications has been approved. 


On the 22 July 2016 an amendment was published of Annex V to Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council on cosmetic products. This amendment indicated that due to an increased incidence of allergies induced by MIT it should be banned in leave-on products.

From 12 February 2017, only cosmetic products which comply with this Regulation will be permitted within the European Union. This is the first in a two-step process, the second stage will see further restriction of MIT in rinse-off products, a vote for which is expected in February 2017.


What is MIT?

MIT (Methylisothiazolinone) is a preservative traditional used in a wide range of water based formulations. It popularity is due to an ability to protect a wide range of formulations at low addition level whilst offering good compatibility with the majority of cosmetic ingredients. 

MIT is predominantly used for rinse-off applications ie shampoo's, liquid hand soaps etc but it has also seen use as a preservative for leave-on products ie skin creams, hair treatments, wet wipes. 

Cases of allergic contact dermatitis attributed to MIT exposure are responsible for the European Union's decision to ban it in leave-on applications. It is still widely used as a rinse-off preservative where the risks of allergic reaction are dramatically decreased, however many FMCG manufacturers and brand owners are under pressure to remove it from all formulations as a precaution. 


What alternatives are available?

Surfachem represents leading preservative supplier Salicylates & Chemicals who have a wide range of 'free-from' preservatives systems that contain no MIT.



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