What is VG/PG?

Vegetable Glycerin Studies

Glycerol is one of the most benign organic liquids known to man. It is hype-allergenic, non-carcinigeic, non teratogenic and non-mutagenic. It is metabolized quite easily by a process called beta-oxidation. This process results in the production of CO2 and H2O and is a quite normal, common, and natural catabolic process.

The following is a few excerpts from a study called SIDS initial assessment profile of Glycerol Citation

  • Glycerol is of low toxicity when ingested, inhaled, or in contact with skin
  • The NOACE for local irritant effects to the upper respiratory tract is 165 mg/m3
  • Glycerol is of a low order of acute oral and dermal toxicity with LD50 values in excess of 4000 mg/kw bw.
  • Glycerol has low potential to irritate the skin and the eye
  • Glycerol is not a skin irritant
  • Glycerol does not induce gene mutations in bacterial strains, chromosomal effects in mammalian cells or primary DNA damage in vitro
  • Overall, glycerol is not considered to possess genotoxic potential
  • No effects on fertility and reproductive performance were observed
  • No further work is indicated by this study, because of the low hazard potential of this substance.

       Vegetable glycerin is approved by the FDA for use in various forms. Products with Vegetable Glycerin can be found in various common items around your house. A few examples include:

Sugar substitute
In Beauty products including makeup, mousse, shampoo, bubble bath, after shave, and deodorant
Pet food
Skin and hand cream
Baked goods - increase moisture
As a thick gel for creams, gel capsule pills, rubs and jellies
Eye & ear drops, toothpastes, pastes, and many dental care products 

          Glycerine is classified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) and complies with specifications for the Food Chemicals Codex (FCC), United States Pharmacopeia (USP), and European Pharmacopoeia (Ph. Eur. or EP) E244. It is manufactured according to current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) and is shipped according to applicable Good Trade and Distribution Practices (GTDP). Citation
Vegetable Glycerin studies


Features of propylene glycol:

-Serves as a solvent

-Connects and stabilizes insoluble fluids (emulsifier)

-Helps to bind and transport other substances (excipient)

-Holds and dissolves active ingredients equally in a medium

-Attracts/holds water/moisture (hygroscopic)

-Reduces the freezing point

-Increases the boiling point

-Offers outstanding stability with high flash and boiling points

By emulsifying (mixing) active ingredients, which otherwise would not mix with one another, the propylene glycol creates a stable homogeneous fluid that will allow the intended final product, be it a face cream or shampoo, for example, to do its job.

Applications of propylene glycol:

-To carry flavors in food and drinks

-To make face creams, body lotions, deodorant-sticks, lipsticks and many other cosmetic articles soft, moist and consistent

-To stabilize foams in cosmetic and healthcare products

-To help pet and livestock feed retain its moisture and taste

-To act as a carrier of active ingredients in vaccines, cough relief syrups or gel capsules to help deliver this substances within the body for treatment and prevention of diseases

Applications of propylene glycol in cosmetics and toiletries include products in:

-Personal care: bath and shower soaps, gels, face cleansers, shaving foams, after shave, antiperspirant deodorants, roll-ons, sticks, lipsticks, fragrances, perfumes

-Skin care: hand, body and facial moisturizers, sunscreen products

-Hair care: shampoos, conditioners, styling gels

-Oral care: mouthwashes, toothpaste

-Baby care: wipes, antiseptics


Propylene glycol has been approved for use as a food additive. In direct food contact it is mainly used as:


-Solvent and carrier of flavor or color in the food and beverage manufacturing processes, to make drinks, cookies, cakes, candy

-Thickener, clarifier and stabilizer in food and beverage such as beer, salad dressings or baking products

Applications of propylene glycol as pet and cattle feed additive* include its use as a(n):

-Humectant to provide moisture and taste. ” A humectant is a substance with the ability to attract and hold water in a formulation ”

-Solvent, stabilizer and preservative to keep the feed suitable for longer use

-Additive for increased energy provision

  • * Not approved for use in cat food

Some Pharmaceutical applications include:

-Therapeutic drugs and medicines, such as vaccines or cough syrup

-Local anesthetics


-Vitamins and hormones