The World Around Us

Chemicals in Our World

Is sodium laureth sulfate toxic?

You’re probably asking this because you’ve seen this chemical listed on your shampoo or toothpaste—and at the levels in those products, no, it is not toxic. This molecule is a surfactant, very similar to many soaps. And like most soaps, if you get them in your eyes, it hurts. The chemical is an irritant, but it does not cause cancer, like you might have heard.


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