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Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3) (131-57-7)

Oxybenzone Chemical Structure

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What is Oxybenzone?

Oxybenzone also referred to as Benzophenone-3, is a hydroxybenzophenone that is benzophenone which is substituted at the 2- and 4-positions of one of the benzene rings by hydroxy and methoxy groups respectively. It is an organic compound and acts as a medication for dermatological conditions, a protective agent, and a filter for UV rays.

Macsen Laboratories is the leading supplier of Oxybenzone with ISO certification.
Name of Product Oxybenzone
IUPAC Name (2-hydroxy-4-methoxyphenyl)-phenylmethanone
Synonyms Benzophenone-3; 2-HYDROXY-4-METHOXYBENZOPHENONE; Oxybenzon; Advastab 45; 2-Benzoyl-5-methoxyphenol; Oxibenzona; Oxybenzonum; Anuvex; Escalol 567; Eusolex 4360
CAS No 131-57-7
Molecular Formula C14H12O3
Molecular weight 228.24 gm/mol
Pubchem CID 4632
Pubchem SID 475552375

Chemical Properties

SR. No Criteria Limit/Specification
1 Appearance (Form) Solid Crystals or Powder
2 Appearance (Color) Colorless or White yellowish, cream colored to Pale yellow
3 Odor Odorless to weak odor
4 Solubility Freely soluble in alcohol, toluene and most organic solvents
Practically insoluble in water
5 Melting Point 65.5 °C
6 Density (At 25 °C) 1.32 g/cm3


  • Oxybenzone is a stabilizer and an ultraviolet light absorber that is employed in the production of plastics.
  • Oxybenzone, along with other benzophenones, is utilized as a photostabilizer in sunscreens, hairsprays, nail polish, fragrances, and other cosmetics due to their ability to reduce the risk of damage caused by prolonged exposure to sunlight.
  • It can also be used as a photostabilizer for synthetic resins.
  • It is used in a wide variety of products, including toys, furniture coatings, and others, to resist UV deterioration.

Oxybenzone in Sunscreen

Oxybenzone is found in around 70 percent of all sunscreen creams available. It has the ability to absorb in UVB and UVA II rays, which leads to photochemical excitation and absorption of energy. As the absorbed energy decays back to its ground state, it causes the emission of radiation with longer wavelengths. This results in a reduction in the amount of radiation that can penetrate the skin, which makes it an effective UV-ray blocker.

The US Food and Drug Administration approved the use of oxybenzone in sunscreen products in the 1980s. However, in 2021, U.S. FDA, changed their classification of Oxybenzone and do not recognize it as GRASE, Generally Recognized As Safe and Effective, and permits the use of oxybenzone in OTC sunscreen products in only up to 6% concentration.


Q. Does Oxybenzone cause cancer?

Oxybenzone has not been found to possess carcinogenic properties, however, sufficient research has not been conducted in this matter.

Q. Is Oxybenzone safe?

Some environmental and health organizations identify oxybenzone as potentially hazardous to humans and the environment. Studies have demonstrated that oxybenzone can induce skin allergies.

Q. Is Oxybenzone the same as benzene?

Oxybenzone and benzene are entirely distinct substances. Oxybenzone is FDA-approved for use in sunscreens, whereas benzene, which is used to create many polymers and is present in cigarette smoke, is much more harmful and is prohibited by the FDA in skincare products.

Q. Is Avobenzone the same as Oxybenzone?

The primary distinction between oxybenzone and avobenzone is that oxybenzone is safe for use in sunscreens applied to human skin, whereas avobenzone is not, as it can breakdown in the sun and release damaging radicals.

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