Dihydroxyacetone (DHA)

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CAS 96-26-4.

NCI Name 1,3dihydroxy2propanone

This effective self tanning agent is obtained by bacterial degradation of natural phosphate sugar. It reacts with proteins in the skin thereby forming melatonin like brown compounds within 2 hours producing a suntanned appearance.

Off-white, fine crystalline powder, no odor. pH 4-6, soluble in water alcohol.

synonyms dihyxal, otan, oxantin.


Use: Can be added to formulations as is, usual final concentration 2%-10%, DHA may lose its tanning effect or induce discolorations when combined with AHAs, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, iron oxide pigments, or certain perfumes. 


Useage; for the face about 2% is a good rule of thumb.

For the body

up to 10%.