CHEM 120 Unit 2: Chemical Names

Comet is a household cleaning product that gets rid of toughest problem areas in your shower, toilet, and sink. Comet is highly effective because it contains chlorine bleach, but if handled wrong, it can damage your nasal passages, eyes, and lungs. Comet is toxic enough to quickly kill bacteria and other unwanted forms of life, warding off pathogens. Besides the element chlorine, Comet includes many compounds that aid in cleaning, such as calcium carbonate (CaCo3), calcium hydroxide (Ca(OH)2), sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) , sodium linear alkylbenzenesulfonate (C18H29NaO3S), and tricholo-s-triazinetrione (C3Cl3N3O3). A few of these compounds are scrubbing agents, sequestering agent, and surfactant cleaning agent, to make sure your home has the cleanest surfaces.


Sarah, & James, M. (2019, January 24). Comet’s Tale, A Safety Review. Retrieved from to an external site.

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Household Products Database – Health and Safety Information on Household Products. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Option 2

The household product that I chose was Lysol. Lysol is a disinfectant spray used to kill bacteria that can come in contact with your friends and family.  When purchasing Lysol with fragrances you must be aware that it can cause skin irritation, allergies, and even damage to vision. Specifically, “ethanol can cause some concerns to the body such as respiratory effects, nervous system effects, and chronic aquatic toxicity.” (LYSOL) With that being said, yes, Lysol can be very dangerous, but only when used incorrectly. The five compounds from this product chosen are isopropyl alcohol C3H80, hydrogen peroxide H2O2, potassium hydroxide KOH, ethanol C2H50H, and phenylphenol C12H100.


LYSOL Disinfectant Spray, Spring Waterfall Cleaner Rating. (n.d.). Retrieved from

  • Good evening Camille,Personally, I love all the Lysol products. I love the smell and use it frequently to clean my home. I have a 3-year old boy who is into everything and is at times like a germ laden sponge. So, in essence, I am more of a clean freak these days than before motherhood. I did not know that Lysol had so many familiar chemicals in them. There was a time when I distrusted the cleaning power of Lysol and I did not think that it was a powerful enough cleaner. I would mix Lysol with bleach thinking that I would get a more effective clean. After doing that a couple of times, I quickly learned that mixing the two products was a very bad idea because I distinctively remember not being able to breathe in the bathroom while I cleaning. My eyes were burning and my throat was irritated. At the time, I lived with my mother, who is a nurse, and she heard me suffering. Of course, my mother rescued me and scolded me for my bright idea.The primary chemical in Lysol is benzalkonium chloride, followed by ethyl alcohol, potassium hydroxide, and host of other chemicals (What is the primary chemical in Lysol, n.d.). These chemicals are all toxic to humans and cause several negative effects when inhaled, ingested, or used with ill intentions. While it has been reported by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Lysol has not been fully tested for the potential risks to human health (Lanier, 2019). And yet, Lysol is considered and marketed as one of the top cleaning products advertised and makes the claim that their product kills 99.9% of germs. Like all products that carry a significant risk, we as consumers have the responsibility to weigh the risks involved and the benefits of using a product. I still use this product even today, but I am much more careful when I am using it. References:Lanier, J. (2019, January 10). How Is Lysol Health Hazardous? Retrieved May 16, 2019, from to an external site.. What Is the Primary Chemical in Lysol? (n.d.). Retrieved May 16, 2019, from to an external site..

To keep my hair healthy and clean, I use doTerra shampoo & conditioner. The shampoo contains Titanium Dioxide (TiO2), Iron Oxides (Fe203) & Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (C6H11NaO5S). DoTerra’s conditioner has Stearyl Alcohol (C18H38O) & Cetyl Alcohol (C16H34O). There are safety concerns with some of these chemical ingredients when in a powdered form or in high doses. Stearyl Alcohol is typically used for soothing and softening but when in a high dose, has been found to cause tumor formation. Interestingly, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate has been found to be safe to use as a cosmetic ingredient at 50% in rinse-off and 17% in leave-on products. “When inhaled, Titanium Dioxide is considered possibly carcinogenic to humans.”(The Scoop on Titanium Dioxide in Cosmetics)


The Scoop on Titanium Dioxide in Cosmetics. (2018, April 13). Retrieved from