Chemical and Physical Characteristics (*)
Chemical Name 2-Hydroxy- 4-methoxy-benzophenone 0. RBA
INCI Name: Benzophenone-3
OTC Drug Name: Oxybenzone
Empirical formula C14 H12 O3
Molecular weight 228.2
Appearance Yellow powder
Melting point (°C) 63.0-64.5
Specific extinction (in methanol)
at 285 nm 640 min.
at 325 nm 415 min.
Solubility (at 25°C)
Water practically insoluble
Mineral Oil 2%
Isopropyl Myristate 10%
Benzophenone 3 is a safe and effective oil-soluble UV-filter with a broad-spectrum absorbance ranging between 270 and 350 nm. It has excellent photochemical and heat stability.
Benzophenone 3 is widely used in formulating sun-care and skin-care products. It is frequently used in combination with other UV-filters when a moderate to high sun protection is desired.
In addition, Benzophenone 3 is also effective in photoprotection of product integrity and color.
Cosmetic Regulatory Status
ECC: Directive 76/768 Annex VII Part 1 No. 4; 10% max.
USA: Final Monograph by FDA on OTC sunscreens; 6% max.
Japan: listing required on label; 5% max.
LD50 (oral) > 5000 mg/kg
Skin irritation non-irritant
Eye irritation non-irritant
(See also: C.I.R. - Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Benzophenones - Journal of the American College of Toxicology, Volume 2, Number 5, 1983)
Transport, Storage and Handling
Labeling: Product is not classified as hazardous according to international transport regulations.
Do not breathe dust.
Store in the original closed containers in a dry cool place. Protect from light .
Note: Compositions for sale such as sunscreen creams and lotions that make an SPF claim are regulated by the FDA as an over the counter drug. Over the counter drugs must be made according to the associated FDA monograph and all FDA regulations including registration, stability and validation must be observed.