Definition: Anisyl Alcohol, also known as anise alcohol or 4-methoxybenzyl alcohol, is an organic compound that is colorless to slightly yellow and has a pleasant floral odor​.

Use in Cosmetics: It is often used in cosmetics and personal care products, particularly in skin care products. It serves as a fragrance ingredient, contributing to the overall scent of the product​.

Other Names: It may also be referred to as Anise Alcohol or 4-methoxybenzyl alcohol​.

Skin Sensitivities and Risks: Anisyl Alcohol is generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for use as a flavoring substance, and the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) concluded that it does not present a safety concern at current levels of intake when used as a flavoring agent​1​. However, the International Fragrance Association (IFRA) has set restrictions on its use in fragrances due to potential sensitization, indicating that it may cause allergic reactions in some individuals​.

EU 26 List: Anisyl Alcohol is included in the EU 26 list of fragrance allergens. The European Cosmetics Regulation requires manufacturers to indicate the presence of certain "allergenic" substances in the list of ingredients if they are present above certain levels in the product. For Anisyl Alcohol, this concentration is 0.001% in leave-on skin products and 0.01% in products that are rinsed off the skin​1​. The EU 26 list was created based on extensive research by the European Commission to identify ingredients that may cause allergic reactions in some individuals when exposed to the skin in sufficient amounts, usually over a long period. These allergic reactions are often lifelong and can't be overlooked. Anisyl Alcohol is listed as a "less documented" allergen, indicating that reactions to it may not be as frequent as those to some other substances on the list.

How safe is it?

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