Posted on 26/10/2023 in Fire Safety 2023
Possible release of brominated FRs from microplastics.

Simulations using synthetic sweat and sebum and microplastics (polyethylene, polypropylene and polystyrene) containing PBDEs or HBCD suggested that 1 – 2% of the brominated FR could be dermally bioaccessible. Bioaccessibility was around twice as high in <0.45 mm diameter microplastics compared to 3 – 4 mm pellets. Addition of cosmetics (antiperspirant, foundation, moisturiser, sunscreen) increased bioaccessibility in some cases. The authors estimate that dermal exposure to brominated FRs in household dust microplastics could be as significant as from FR-containing materials.

“Novel Insights into the Dermal Bioaccessibility and Human Exposure to Brominated Flame Retardant Additives in Microplastics”, O. Abafe et al., Environ. Sci. Technol. 2023, 57, 10554−10562,

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