TYou can recognize surfactants and emulsifiers by abbreviations like “PEG” in combination with numbers (PEG-8, PEG-18, etc.) or by the suffix “-eth,” for example as in sodium laureth sulfate.
Polyethylene glycol (PEG) and PEG derivatives are used as surfactants or emulsifiers in many cosmetic products. In other words, they are harmful substances that make our skin more permeable – which means that more active ingredients, but also more harmful substances, can penetrate the skin. PEG derivatives are especially problematic for irritated skin and can potentially be allergenic. In addition, they can contain residues of ethylene oxide which may be considered carcinogenic. These materials are often derived from ecologically harmful crude oil and are therefore detrimental to the environment, as they are difficult to break down.