• Derived from: corn
  • Pronunciation: \ˈle-sə-thən\
  • Type: Natural

What Is Lecithin?

Lecithin is a lipid or combination of fatty acids.[1,2]  It naturally occurs in many life forms, such as corn, egg yolks, and soybeans.[3] It can be a waxy mass or a pourable liquid.[4]

What Does Lecithin Do in Our products?

Lecithin is an emulsifier and skin conditioner.[5,6] It is often used in perfumes, makeup, hairspray, deodorants, moisturizers and similar products.[7,8]

Why Puracy Uses Lecithin

We use lecithin to keep ingredients from separating and to help products feel smooth. Whole Foods has deemed the ingredient acceptable in its body care and cleaning product quality standards.[11,12] The FDA has deemed canola lecithin as generally recognized as safe (GRAS).[13] According to the Cosmetic Ingredients Review, lecithin and hydrogenated lecithin are safe in rinse-off products and in leave-in products at concentrations below 15%.[14] he EPA has put lecithins on its safer chemical ingredients list, and studies show that the ingredient does not irritate the skin and is safe for use in cosmetics.[15,16,17]

How Lecithin Is Made

Commercially, lecithin is made by hydrating soy, safflower or corn oil. For the manufacture of Canola lecithin, canola seeds are dried and pressed. Then they are extracted with hexane. The mixture is then filtered and heated to remove the hexane.[9]The ingredient can be bleached and dried if desired. Lecithin manufactured from soy often involves removing most or all of the soy protein. Enzyme-modified lecithin is made by treating lecithin with either phospholipase A2 or pancreatin.[10]



[1]European Commission
[2] Environmental Working Group
[3] Personal Care Council 
[5] Environmental Working Group
[6] Personal Care Council
[7] Personal Care Council
 [8] Environmental Working Group
[9]  Food and Drug Administration
[10] Personal Care Council
[11] Whole Foods Market
[12] Whole Foods Market
[13] Food and Drug Administration
[14] Personal Care Council
[15] Environmental Protection Agency
[16] Personal Care Council 
[17] Andersen, F. A. Final report on the safety assessment of lecithin and hydrogenated lecithin. International Journal of Toxicology. 2001;20(1):21-45. 

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