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An acid found in vinegar that can be a skin irritant and drying to skin, though it also has disinfecting properties.

Solvent for gums, resins, and volatile oils. Styptic (stops bleeding) and a rubefacient. Also used as a fragrance ingredient and pH adjuster. A clear colorless liquid with a pungent odor, it is used in freckle-bleaching lotions, hand lotions, and hair dyes. It occurs naturally in apples, cheese, cocoa, coffee, grapes, skim milk, oranges, peaches, pineapples, strawberries, and a variety of other fruits and plants. It’s also in human sweat.

Vinegar is about 4 to 6 percent acetic acid, and essence of vinegar is about 14 percent. Less than 5 percent acetic acid in solution is mildly irritating to the skin. Banned in cosmetics by ASEAN.


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