Multiple Prop 65 settlement agreements have been reached for phthalates in a variety of products. Many of these allow a Prop 65 warning as an alternative.

SAFEGUARDS | Consumer ProductsNO. 001/21

 SG 00121 Chemicals

California Proposition 65 (Prop 65) is the ‘Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986’, a ballot initiative passed overwhelmingly by Californian residents in November 1986. It requires the state to publish a list of chemicals that are known to cause cancer, birth defects and/or reproductive harm. First published in 1987, the list has evolved to approximately 900 chemicals.

In Prop 65, one important provision for companies doing business in California is to provide a clear and reasonable warning before knowingly and intentionally exposing anyone to a listed chemical. Unless exempt, businesses have 12 months to comply with this requirement once a chemical is listed.

Among the list of Prop 65 chemicals are six phthalates known to the state of California to cause cancer, birth defects, other reproductive harm or a combination of these toxicities. These are:

  • Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP, CAS 117-81-7) – listed since 1988
  • Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP, CAS 85-68-7), di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP, CAS 84-74-2) and di-n-hexyl phthalate (DnHP, CAS 84-75-3)  – all listed since 2005
  • Di-isodecyl phthalate (DIDP, CAS 68515-49-1 and 26761-40-0) – listed in 2007
  • Diisononyl phthalate (DINP) – listed in 2013

Multiple Prop 65 settlements have been reached for phthalates in a range of consumer products. These products include accessories, bags, pet products, sport and leisure, stationery and office supplies, toys and other household goods. 

Highlights of these settlements are summarized in Table 1. It is interesting to note that some of the products were not in violation of all regulated phthalates but the parties in these settlements agreed to reformulate their products for all (six) phthalates on the Prop 65 list. Many of these settlements also allow a Prop 65 warning as an alternative. 

Entry Scope Reformulation/Warning for phthalates 
1 Beauty accessories made with vinyl components ≤ 1000 ppm each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP
2 Bookmark products
≤ 0.1% each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP
3 Car mounts with suction cup
≤ 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP
4 Dashcam witnesses with polymer suction cup mount
≤ 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP
5 Handbags, purses, clutches, and totes
≤ 0.1% each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP otherwise warning
6 Plastic pet placemats/litter trapper mats
≤ 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP otherwise warning
7 PVC air hose
< 0.1% each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP
8 Rechargeable power banks with plastic cables
≤ 1000 ppm each of DEHP and DINP otherwise warning
9 Scarf hangers
< 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP otherwise warning
10 Seat covers/cases
≤ 0.1% each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP otherwise warning
11 Soft toys with suction cup
< 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP
12 Steering wheel covers
≤ 0.1% each of BBP, DBP, DEHP, DIDP, DINP and DnHP otherwise warning
13 Suction cups
< 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP otherwise warning
14 Trail markers ≤ 0.1% each of DEHP and DINP otherwise warning
15 Vinyl rain suits < 0.1% each of DEHP and other phthalates otherwise warning
16 Window curtains
< 0.1% each of DEHP and other phthalates otherwise warning

Table 1

A Prop 65 settlement is a consent agreement between the parties named in the settlement and a party not named in a settlement is not bound by that settlement.

Throughout a global network of laboratories, SGS offers comprehensive testing, product assessment and consultancy services related to California Proposition 65 to help you manage risk in your supply chain for consumer goods such as DIYs, electrical and electronics, hardgoods products, juvenile products, and textile & toy products. In the end, it’s only trusted because it’s tested. Contact us for more information or visit our website

For enquiries, please contact:

Hingwo Tsang
Global Information and Innovation Manager
t: (+852) 2774 7420

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