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Kekulé, skeletal formula of chloroxylenol
Systematic IUPAC name
88-04-0 YesY
3D model (Jmol) Interactive image
Interactive image
ChemSpider 21106017 YesY
ECHA InfoCard 100.001.631
EC Number 201-793-8
KEGG D03473 YesY
MeSH chloroxylenol
PubChem 2723
RTECS number ZE6850000
UNII 0F32U78V2Q YesY
Molar mass 156.61 g·mol−1
Melting point 114 to 116 °C (237 to 241 °F; 387 to 389 K)
log P 3.377
Acidity (pKa) 9.76
Basicity (pKb) 4.24
D08AE05 (WHO)
GHS pictograms The exclamation-mark pictogram in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)
GHS signal word WARNING
H302, H315, H317, H319
P280, P305+351+338
Harmful Xn
R-phrases R22, R36/38, R43
S-phrases (S2), S24, S37
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
Infobox references

Chloroxylenol (4-chloro-3,5-dimethylphenol) is a broad-spectrum antimicrobial chemical compound used to control bacteria, algae, fungi and virus. It is used in hospitals and households for disinfection and sanitation. It is also commonly used in antibacterial soaps, wound-cleansing applications and household antiseptics such as Dettol liquid (to which it contributes its distinctive odor), cream and ointments.[2] Studies have shown an antimicrobial activity which is enhanced by additives. Its antibacterial action is due to disruption of cell membrane potentials.[3] Developed in Europe in the 1920s and used in the United States since the 1950s, chloroxylenol is one of the most mature antimicrobial agents.[4]

Chloroxylenol is not significantly toxic to humans, is practically non-toxic to birds, and is moderately toxic to freshwater invertebrates. It is highly toxic to fish and cats and should not be used around them.[5] It is a mild skin irritant and may trigger allergic reactions in some individuals.[medical citation needed]


  1. ^ CID 2723 from PubChem
  2. ^ Ascenzi, Joseph M. (1996). "Chloroxylenol: an old-new antimicrobial". Handbook of disinfectants and antiseptics. New York: M. Dekker. ISBN 978-0-8247-9524-5. 
  3. ^ Aly, R; Malbach, H (1988). "Comparative antibacterial efficacy of a 2-minute surgical scrub with chlorhexidine gluconate, povidone-iodine, and chloroxylenol sponge-brushes". American Journal of Infection Control. 16 (4): 173–7. doi:10.1016/0196-6553(88)90029-6. PMID 3189943. 
  4. ^ Larson, E (1986). "An approach for selection of health care personnel handwashing agents". Infect Control. 7: 419–424. 
  5. ^ Dettol liquid at