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IUPAC name
Other names
  • 4-tert-Butyl-α-methyl-benzenepropanal
  • 4-tert-Butyl-α-methyl-hydrocinnamaldehyde
  • Butylphenyl methylpropional
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.001.173 Edit this at Wikidata
EC Number
  • 201-289-8
RTECS number
  • MW4895000
UN number 3082
  • InChI=1S/C14H20O/c1-11(10-15)9-12-5-7-13(8-6-12)14(2,3)4/h5-8,10-11H,9H2,1-4H3
  • CC(CC1=CC=C(C=C1)C(C)(C)C)C=O
Molar mass 204.313 g·mol−1
Appearance Clear viscous liquid
Density 0.94 g/cm3
Melting point −20 °C (−4 °F; 253 K)
Boiling point 275 °C (527 °F; 548 K)[1]
0.045 g/L at 20 °C
log P 4.36 [1]
Related compounds
Related aldehydes

Hexyl cinnamaldehyde

Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).

Lilial (a trade name for lily aldehyde, also known as lysmeral) is a chemical compound commonly used as a perfume in cosmetic preparations and laundry powders, often under the name butylphenyl methylpropional. It is an aromatic aldehyde, naturally occurring in crow-dipper and tomato plants,[2] and produced synthetically in large scale. It was banned for use in cosmetics by the EU in March 2022 after being found to be harmful to fertility.


Lilial is produced at BASF through a double anodic oxidation of 4-tertbutyl-toluene on >10,000 ton per year scale.[3]


Lilial is commonly produced and sold as a racemic mixture; however, testing has indicated that the different enantiomers of the compound do not contribute equally to its odor. The (R)-enantiomer has a strong floral odor, reminiscent of cyclamen or lily of the valley; whereas the (S)-enantiomer possesses no strong odor.[4]

(R)-Lilial (top) and (S)-lilial

Like most aldehydes, lilial is not long term stable and tends to slowly oxidize on storage.


The Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS, scientific committee for consumer safety of the EU Commission) concluded in May 2019 that the use of lilial in both rinse-off and leave-on cosmetics "cannot be considered as safe".[5]

After animal studies found it to be toxic for reproduction, it was reclassified as a prohibited substance in the EU, and banned from use in cosmetics as of March 2022.[6]

It can sometimes act as an allergen and may cause contact dermatitis in susceptible individuals.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Haefliger, Olivier P.; Jeckelmann, Nicolas; Ouali, Lahoussine; León, Géraldine (2010). "Real-Time Monitoring of Fragrance Release from Cotton Towels by Low Thermal Mass Gas Chromatography Using a Longitudinally Modulating Cryogenic System for Headspace Sampling and Injection". Analytical Chemistry. 82 (2): 729–737. doi:10.1021/ac902460d. ISSN 0003-2700. PMID 20025230.
  2. ^ "Lilial".
  3. ^ Möhle, S.; Zirbes, M.; Rodrigo, E.; Gieshoff, T.; Wiebe, A.; Waldvogel, S. R. Modern Electrochemical Aspects for the Synthesis of Value-Added Organic Products. Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2018, 57, 6018−6041
  4. ^ Bartschat, Dietmar; Bürner, Susanne; Mosandl, A.; Bats, Jan W. (1997). "Stereoisomeric flavour compounds LXXVI: direct enantioseparation, structure elucidation and structure-function relationship of 4-tert-butyl-α-methyldihydrocinnamaldehyde". Zeitschrift für Lebensmittel-Untersuchung und -Forschung A. 205 (1): 76–79. doi:10.1007/s002170050127. ISSN 1431-4649. S2CID 97399242.
  5. ^ Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (2019-05-10). "OPINION ON the safety of Butylphenyl methylpropional (p-BMHCA) in cosmetic products" (PDF). Retrieved 2020-05-28. On individual product basis, Butylphenyl methylpropional (p-BMHCA) (CAS 80-54-6) with alpha-tocopherol at 200 ppm, can be considered safe when used as fragrance ingredient in different cosmetic leave-on and rinse-off type products. However, considering the first-tier deterministic aggregate exposure, arising from the use of different product types together, Butylphenyl methylpropional at the proposed concentrations cannot be considered as safe.
  6. ^ "COMMISSION REGULATION (EU) 2021/1902 OF 29 October 2021 amending Annexes II, III and V to Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards the use of cosmetic products of certain substances classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic for reproduction". Retrieved 2022-01-03. CAS No. 80-54-6