Esculin An extract from the leaves and bark of horse chestnut.

Esters Light oils used as cosmetic emollients.

Ethoxydiglycol Alcohol compound widely used as a solvent or fragrance ingredient in tanning products, cleansing creams and moisturisers. Ingredients like this – created by a process called ‘ethoxylation’ – canbe contaminated to produce 1,4-dioxane – a carcinogen – although that’s not to say they will be, provided effective controls are in place.

Ethyl alcohol The same as ‘rubbing alcohol’, and is used as an antibacterial in mouthwashes, nail enamel, lipsticks, etc.; it’s made by the fermentation of starch, sugar and similar carbohydrates.

Ethyl macadamiate A mixture of fatty acids from macadamia nut oil and alcohol.

Ethylhexyl palmitate An ester of 2-ethylhexylalcohol and Palmitic acid (Palmitic acid is present in allspice, anise, celery seed, coffee, tea and many animal fats and plant oils); some Palmitates have been linked to contact dermatitis.

Ethylhexylglycerin A preservative derived from glycerine which has been linked in some people with allergic contact dermatitis; however, it’s quite widely used in natural cosmetics in very small quantities, way down the ingredients list where it shouldn’t be problematic.

Ethylhexyl salicylate Approved by the US FDA (Food & Drink Administration) as a sunscreen ingredient, which absorbs UVB (burning) rays.

Eugenol Extracted from certain essential oils, including clove oil, nutmeg, cinnamon and bay leaf; it can be skin-sensitising, and must by law be listed as a separate fragrance component on labels because of this.