Cocamidopropyl Betaine (CAPB)

Removing dirt from clothing, dishes and our skin is an important part of daily life. From soaps and toothpastes to laundry detergents, many products foam when used to unlock their cleaning action. The ingredients which help make this happen are called surfactants.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine (CAPB) is a mild surfactant which allows us to formulate products that are effective in cleaning but remain mild to the skin.

Your questions answered

Is CAPB safe?

Yes, it is safe for use in cosmetic products. The safety of CAPB has been assessed by the European Commission’s independent expert advisory committee, the Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety. In the U.S., the CIR Expert Panel concluded that CAPB is safe for use in rinse-off cosmetic products.

Can CAPB cause skin allergies?

CAPB does not cause allergic reactions. However, during manufacture of CAPB, manufacturing by-products dimethylaminopropylamine (DMAPA) and amidoamine are formed and they can cause allergic skin reactions for some consumers.

Unilever has strict controls in place to minimise the levels of DMAPA and amidoamine. This ensures CAPB can continue to be used in our mild formulations while reducing the risk that consumers will become allergic. This approach is supported by regulators and our Safety and Environmental Assurance Centre (SEAC).

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