About this Chemical

  • Lanolin is an oily substance obtained from sheep wool. Manufacturers extract sebum from the wool, then clean and refine it to produce a final product known as anhydrous lanolin. Lanolin combines easily with water, making it a useful ingredient in hand creams, lotions, moisturizers, sunscreens, makeup products, hairspray and shaving cream.
  • Livestock owners routinely dip sheep into insecticides because these animals are susceptible to pests.
  • The majority of lanolin used in most cosmetics is contaminated with organo-phosphate pesticides and insecticides.
  • Remember cosmetics are the least regulated products under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA). The FFDCA does not require pre-market safety testing, review, or approval for cosmetics.
  • Some lanolin can be called:
  1. hypoallergenic pharmaceutical grade lanolin –this means any parasitic control agent applied to the sheep to prevent distress or suffering of the animals is completely removed by the process of modern refining.
  2. cosmetic-grade lanolin – can be contaminated with carcinogenic pesticides such as DDT, dieldrin, and lindane, in addition to other neurotoxic pesticides.