DBP, is used mainly in nail products as a solvent for dyes and as a plasticizer that prevents nail polishes from becoming brittle. This chemical is also commonly used in polyvinyl chloride plastic (PVC) to render it flexible. (think shower curtains)
DBP is absorbed through the skin and it can enhance the capacity of other chemicals to cause genetic mutations. The European Union classifies DBP as a suspected endocrine disruptor on the basis of evidence that it interferes with hormone function, and as toxic to reproduction on the basis that it may cause harm to the unborn child and impair fertility.
Health Canada notes evidence suggesting that exposure to phthalates may cause health effects such as liver and kidney failure in young children when products containing phthalates are sucked or chewed for extended periods. Health Canada recently announced regulations banning six phthalates (including DBP) in soft vinyl children’s toys and child care articles, however its use in cosmetics is not restricted.
The European Union bans dibutyl phthalate in cosmetics, childcare articles and toys.
EWG Score 10