Infographic : how to spot palm oil in a beauty product

By the 13 January 2015

Modifié le 10 June 2020

Zero in any palm oil derivatives in a cosmetic product

Palm oil use in cosmetics doesn’t represent any health risk. However, we must avoid its use by any means in our beauty products. Palm oil overexploitation have become a complete environmental and social plague. Because of an ever growing industrial demand, palm groves are dramatically taking over, causing an unprecedented deforestation : half of rainforests are now gone. For instance, Borneo have lost 80% of its forest since 1990. What if our seemingly harmless beauty habits contributed to that catastrophy? As a matter of fact, 23% of the global palm oil production is used by the cosmetic industry.


Which has resulted in an aggravation of global warming, and the exctinction of thousands of species of which survival depended on these rainforests (orangutans, Sumatra’s tiger). Palm oil production is located in only a few key areas : south east Asia for instance. The problem is those areas shelter the world’s most biodiversified primary forests. Which take centuries to grow, meaning that once they’re gone, we can’t grow them back. The palm oil used in our chips, crackers, biscuits, chocolate spread AND cosmetics contribute to that invaluable and irrevocable loss.


As for food products, spoting out palm oil is pretty easy : just look for “vegetable oil” or “vegetable fat” on the ingredient list. If there is no further specification on which oil or fat is used, it means that palm oil is part of the equation.


Regarding the cosmetic industry, our bathrooms are far from safe. Palm oil is omnipresent in all these every day beauty and hygiene products :

  • face skincare and body lotions
  • hygiene and makeup removal products
  • face, body and hair oils
  • make up, etc.

Identifying palm oil presence in a beauty product is a rather difficult mission. Why ? Palm oil is never used in its raw state (Elaeis Guineensis Oil) in cosmetics. But hidden as hundreds of derivatives that even a scientist couldn’t know by heart.

Of course, those derivatives always appear in their scientific name on an ingredients/INCI list. So how you and me could know what’s behind that gibberish? As a matter of fact, we only need to know a few prefixes and suffixes to zero in a palm oil derivative.

To help you, we have created a simple infographic that says it all. Read and share to raise awarness : do not let our beauty routine destroy our planet !

The ultimate list of prefixes and suffixes indicating the presence of palm oil in a beauty product

Infographic : how to spoit palm oil derivatives in a beauty products

And as a quick reminder :


Ingredient names containing the suffixe «CAPRYL»


Caprylic capric triglycérides

Dicaprylyl Ether


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «LAURYL»

Lauryl Glucoside

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

*An exception : Sodium Laurate in the Aleppo Soap (it’s a laurel derivative)


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «STEAR»

Glyceryl Distearate

Isostearyl Palmitate


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «MYR(IST-)»

Myristyl Myristate

Isopropyl Myristate


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «CETEAR-»

Cetearyl Alcohol

Cetearyl Olivate


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «PALM- »

Sodium Palmate

Palmitate d’Isopropyl


Ingredient names containing the prefixe «DODEC-»


Octyldodecyl Myristate


In very rare cases, some of these ingredients might actually be coconut oil derivatives. But palm oil being a lot cheaper, guess wich one cosmetic brands prefer…

Please share that knowledge alowing us all to make mindfull choices. If you ever have any doubt, just ask the brand! Pick up the phone and ask them what’s their position on palm oil. The more calls they’ll get, the more responsible the industry will get.

Our commitments against palm oil

oOlution is proud to be the first cosmetic brand ever to be completely palm oil or any of its derivative free.

Discover our palm free facial care

We donate 1 euro to a reforestation project in Sumatra for every order on our website.

We can stop the palm oil disaster together!


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