Skip to content
Dove Rethinking our Ingredients

Rethinking our ingredients

Using hair and skin care ingredients that give you beautiful results and are kind to you couldn’t be more important to us. The choices about what goes into Dove products reflect this commitment. It’s led us to look at our existing formulas with fresh eyes: using the latest research to explain why we’ll keep using some ingredients and avoiding any ingredients we think could be harmful to you. This of course also includes any ingredients that involve testing on animals because we're committed to cruelty-free beauty.

We do not use the following ingredients:

Lyral is a synthetic fragrance ingredient commonly used to create floral notes. But with growing evidence of rising levels of allergic reactions, we decided back in 2017 to stop using Lyral in all our fragrances two years before the Cosmetics Regulation prohibited them.

These two ingredients are used for their antibacterial properties. They’ve been declared safe by expert bodies around the world, but some people prefer not to use them. After we found alternatives that provide the same benefits, we decided we didn’t need them and phased them out in 2017.

Phthalates are a family of chemicals used to increase the flexibility and durability of plastics and are often used in packaging materials. We don’t use them in the making of our products, but because phthalates can occur during the manufacturing process, sometimes tiny traces — though well within safety levels — may still show up in our products. However, these are at microscopic levels – well below safety limits. 

In line with our own standards of avoiding phthalates however, we do not use any phthalates as solvents to mix fragrance ingredients. Instead, we use different methods to bring together fragrance ingredients. 

Lilial (also known as butylphenyl methylpropional or BMHCA) was a synthetic ingredient widely used in beauty products to create a floral fragrance. Lilial is now banned for use in cosmetics, however we removed this ingredient from all of our formulas before the ban came into force.

Other skin and hair care ingredients that we avoid:

  • Coal Tar
  • Hydroquinone
  • Octanoate
  • Retinyl Palmitate
  • Cyclic Silicone D4 


Ingredients we are phasing out:

We’ve always used types of parabens that have been proven safe — Dove products take care of your skin and don’t use harmful skincare ingredients. But we also know that many people choose paraben-free products when they can. So, the vast majority of our products are already formulated to be paraben-free, and we’re working on the rest.

DMDM Hydantoin (DMDMH) is a safe and effective preservative that has been widely used in cosmetic products since the mid 1980s. It’s known as a Formaldehyde ‘donor’ because it releases very low levels of Formaldehyde over time, keeping products fresh and stopping them from spoiling. In fact, all healthy human, animal and plant cells produce and use Formaldehyde at levels similar to those released in preservatives. 

The independent Cosmetics Ingredient Review Expert Panel in the USA has concluded that the ingredient is safe for use. However, to rule out any concerns you may have, all Formaldehyde donors are being phased out of Dove products.

Hello, what are you looking for?