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Cis-Non-2-Enal: An In-Depth Look at Its Role in Cosmetics

Article last updated: June 13, 2024

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Ever wondered what gives your favorite skincare products their unique aroma and anti-aging properties? Dive into the fascinating world of Cis-Non-2-Enal and discover its pivotal role in cosmetics, from its creation to its benefits and potential side effects.

What Is Cis-Non-2-Enal?

Cis-Non-2-Enal, also known as (Z)-Non-2-enal, is a chemical compound that plays a significant role in the world of cosmetics, primarily for its perfuming properties. This ingredient is a type of unsaturated aldehyde, which means it contains a double bond within its carbon chain and an aldehyde group at the end. Its molecular formula is C9H16O, and it is known for its distinctive, somewhat grassy and cucumber-like odor.

Historically, Cis-Non-2-Enal has been identified as a key component in the scent profile of aged human skin, which has led to its use in various fragrance formulations. Its unique aroma makes it a valuable addition to perfumes and scented products, where it can impart a fresh, green note that enhances the overall fragrance experience.

The production of Cis-Non-2-Enal typically involves synthetic organic chemistry techniques. One common method is the partial oxidation of non-2-ene, a process that introduces the aldehyde group into the molecule. This synthetic approach allows for the consistent and scalable production of the compound, ensuring its availability for use in cosmetic formulations.

The Benefits/Uses of Cis-Non-2-Enal

In this section, we will delve into the officially recognized cosmetic benefits and uses of Cis-Non-2-Enal:


Cis-Non-2-Enal is primarily used in cosmetics for its perfuming properties. This means that it is added to products to impart a pleasant fragrance. When you apply a cosmetic product containing Cis-Non-2-Enal, you might notice a fresh, slightly green, and cucumber-like scent. This can enhance your overall sensory experience, making the product more enjoyable to use. The fragrance can also help mask any undesirable odors from other ingredients in the formulation, ensuring that the final product smells appealing.

Note: the listed benefits above are exclusively based on the officially recognized and defined functions of the ingredient, as documented by the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI).

Potential Side Effects & Other Considerations

Cis-Non-2-Enal, also known as (Z)-Non-2-enal, is generally considered safe for use in cosmetic products. However, as with any ingredient, there are potential side effects and considerations to keep in mind.

  • Skin irritation
  • Allergic reactions
  • Contact dermatitis

Regarding individuals who are pregnant or breastfeeding, data and research on the topical usage of Cis-Non-2-Enal during pregnancy and breastfeeding are lacking. Therefore, it is advisable for these individuals to consult a healthcare professional for further advice before using products containing this ingredient.

Side effects and adverse reactions from Cis-Non-2-Enal are relatively uncommon. However, it is always recommended to perform a patch test before widespread usage to ensure that your skin does not react negatively to the ingredient.

In terms of comedogenicity, Cis-Non-2-Enal has a rating of 1 on a scale of 0 to 5, where 0 is totally non-comedogenic and 5 is highly comedogenic. This means that it is unlikely to clog pores and is generally suitable for people who are prone to acne, blemishes, or breakouts.

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