What Is Cinnamyl Alcohol Used For?

Mar. 14, 2022

Cinnamyl alcohol (CINNAMyl alcohol) is an organic compound, often in the form of esterification in the saponification of cinnamyl alcohol, Peruvian balm, and cinnamon leaves. The cinnamyl alcohol was heated in 10% sodium hydroxide solution for 5h, and then the hydrolysate cinnamyl alcohol was extracted with diethyl ether. Finally, cinnamyl alcohol was purified by vacuum distillation. In pure cinnamon, a white crystalline solid is formed, but slightly impure cinnamons take on an oily yellow form. Cinnamyl alcohol can be hydrolyzed from sapiens. Cinnamyl alcohol has a unique aroma and is used in perfumes or deodorants.


Fragrances are ubiquitous in our environment. They are used to provide a pleasant odor and have been used extensively for centuries. Fragrances were identified as the second most common allergen according to the NACDG, with a rate of 11.9%7.

Perfumed Products

Perfumed Products


The detection of a fragrance allergy was made easier with the introduction of a fragrance mix in the 1970s. Prior to that, fragrance allergy was identified primarily through testing with balsam of Peru, which detected only about 50% of those affected23. The current fragrance mix contains eight different fragrance components.


Fragrance mix I is the most useful tool for detecting fragrance allergy24. However, the composition of fragrance-containing products continually changes. Therefore, by including additional allergens such as those in fragrance mix II , the detection rate of fragrance allergy can be increased. It is estimated that ~25% of patients allergic to fragrance would be missed if fragrance mix II were not used25.


In product formulations, fragrances can be used to provide a pleasant odor. However, they can also be used to mask an unpleasant odor – a so-called masking fragrance. This often occurs in products labeled “unscented”. Patients who are identified as being allergic to fragrances must be instructed to read all labels and to avoid any product that lists a fragrance, is labeled “unscented”, or has an obvious scent. They should be instructed to look instead for “fragrance-free” products. 

Perfumed Products

Perfumed Products

Unfortunately, there are several fragrance ingredients that have other purposes, i.e. they act as a preservative or emollient. These covert fragrances, e.g. balsam of Peru, benzaldehyde, benzyl alcohol, bisabolol26, can be used in a product and the product may still be labeled fragrance-free as long as the potentially allergenic ingredient has been identified as being used for a purpose other than fragrance. 


Obviously, this causes significant problems for the individual with fragrance allergy who is trying to avoid fragrances. Label reading may not always be enough unless the patient is educated about some of these practices. Complete disclosure on labels of all ingredients regardless of intended function would be helpful, but this is not yet part of industry practice in the US; by contrast, in Europe 26 fragrances must be included in the product label27. For the individual allergic to fragrances, repeat open application testing is very helpful in screening for an allergy to new or old products.


If you want to get more information about the usage of Cinnamyl alcohol , welcome to contact us today or request a quote.  

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