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Handheld Raman Spectroscopy for the Distinction of Essential Oils Used in the Cosmetics Industry

Ecuadorian Agency for Quality Assurance in Agriculture, AGROCALIDAD, Av. Interoceánica km 14 ½, 170184 Tumbaco, Ecuador
Faculty of Chemical Sciences, Central University of Ecuador, Ciudadela Universitaria, Av. América and Av. Universitaria, 170521 Quito, Ecuador
Rigaku Raman Technologies, Pasedagplatz 3-4, 13088 Berlin, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Amparo Salvador-Carreño
Cosmetics 2015, 2(2), 162-176;
Received: 11 April 2015 / Revised: 8 May 2015 / Accepted: 20 May 2015 / Published: 27 May 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Methods for Quality Control of Cosmetics)
PDF [967 KB, uploaded 27 May 2015]


Essential oils are highly appreciated by the cosmetics industry because they have antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, among others. Since essential oils are natural products, their inclusion in cosmetic formulations is a common practice. Currently, low-quality and/or adulterated essential oils can be found on the market; therefore, analytical methods for control are required. Raman spectroscopy is a versatile technique that can be used for quality control tasks; the portability of modern devices expand the analytical possibilities also to in situ measurements. Fifteen essential oils of interest for the cosmetics industry were measured using a handheld Raman spectrometer, and the assignment of the main bands observed in their average spectra was proposed. In most cases, it is possible to distinguish the essential oils by a simple visual inspection of their characteristic Raman bands. However, for essential oils extracted from closely-related vegetable species and containing the same main component in a very high proportion, the visual inspection of the spectra may be not enough, and the application of chemometric methods is suggested. Characteristic Raman bands for each essential oil can be used to both identify the essential oils and detect adulterations. View Full-Text
Keywords: essential oils; cosmetics; Raman spectroscopy essential oils; cosmetics; Raman spectroscopy

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Jentzsch, P.V.; Ramos, L.A.; Ciobotă, V. Handheld Raman Spectroscopy for the Distinction of Essential Oils Used in the Cosmetics Industry. Cosmetics 2015, 2, 162-176.

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