Merck Manual

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Nontoxic Household Products*

Nontoxic Household Products*

  • Adhesives

  • Antacids

  • Bath oil†

  • Bathtub toys (floating)

  • Bleach (less than 6% sodium hypochlorite)

  • Body conditioners

  • Bubble bath soaps (detergents)†

  • Candles

  • Carbowax (polyethylene glycol)

  • Carboxymethylcellulose (dehydrating material packed with film, books, and other products)

  • Castor oil

  • Cetyl alcohol (also called palmityl oil, a substance used in certain cosmetic products such as shampoos and conditioners)

  • Chalk (calcium carbonate)

  • Colognes

  • Contraceptives

  • Corticosteroids (applied to the skin)

  • Cosmetics

  • Crayons

  • Deodorants

  • Deodorizers, spray and refrigerant

  • Diaper rash cream and ointment

  • Dry cell battery (alkaline)

  • Fabric softeners

  • Glow products, such as glow sticks and glow necklaces

  • Glycerol

  • Glyceryl monostearate

  • Graphite

  • Gums (such as acacia, agar, and ghatti)

  • Hand lotions and creams

  • Hydrogen peroxide (3% medicinal)

  • Incense

  • Indelible markers

  • Ink (the amount in a ballpoint pen)

  • Iodide salts

  • Kaolin

  • Lanolin

  • “Lead” pencils (which are really made of graphite)

  • Linoleic acid

  • Linseed oil (not boiled)

  • Magic markers

  • Matches

  • Methylcellulose

  • Mineral oil†

  • Modeling clay

  • Newspaper

  • Paint (water color or water-based)

  • Perfumes

  • Petroleum jelly

  • Plant food (household)

  • Polyethylene glycols, such as polyethylene glycol stearate

  • Polysorbate

  • Putty

  • Sachets (essential oils, powders)

  • Shaving creams and lotions

  • Silica (silicon dioxide)

  • Soap and soap products (including hand soap)

  • Spermaceti

  • Starch and sizing

  • Stearic acid

  • Sunscreens

  • Talc (except when inhaled)

  • Titanium dioxide

  • Toothpaste with or without fluoride

  • Triacetin (glyceryl triacetate)

  • Vitamins (children’s multiple with or without iron)

  • Vitamins (multiple without iron)

  • Wax or paraffin

  • Zinc oxide

  • Zirconium oxide

* Almost any substance can be toxic if ingested in sufficient amounts.

† Moderately viscous (thick) substances like oils and detergents are not toxic if ingested but can cause significant lung injury if they are inhaled or aspirated into the lungs.