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    Ammonium Laureth Sulfate (ALS)

    Ammonium Laureth Sulfate

    Ammonium Laureth Sulfate (ALS)

    What is it?

    Ammonium Laureth Sulfate is an ammonium salt of ethoxylated lauryl sulfate, a surfactant that contains PEG (polyethylene glycol) in its structure. ALES is classified as an alkyl sulfate and is an anionic surfactantfound primarily in shampoos and body-wash as a foaming agent. May be contaminated with potentially toxic manufacturing impurities such as 1,4-dioxane. 

    Key Information

    • It is especially harmful to children - young eyes may not develop properly if exposed to ALES because proteins are dissolved.
    • Animals exposed to ALES may experience eye damage, depression, labored breathing, diarrhea, and severe skin irritation.

    More Information

    Ammonium Laureth Sulfate is added to products as a foaming agent, and as a detergent. Ammonium Laureth Sulfate is used in many shampoos, toothpastes, and skin cleansers. Ammonium Laureth Sulfate can cause moderate to severe skin and eye irritation. It can also be contaminated with 1,4-Dioxane a suspected carcinogen. The severity of the irritation to increases directly with the concentration of ALES in a product. When combined with other chemicals, ALES can create nitrosamines, which are a potent class of carcinogens. ALES may also damage skin’s immune system by causing skin layers to separate, inflame and age.



    See Nitrosating Agents (

    This ingredient is commonly used in: