Does Fabuloso contain harmful chemicals?


Fabuloso has been a household brand in Latin America, mainly Venezuela and Mexico since the 80s. In 1996, it has entered the US marketplace and of course, hasn’t looked back.

Now Fabuloso has made a name in the global marketplace as a superior brand for cleaning supplements. Before that, all cleaning supplies used to look drab with a pungent smell, which had proved quite unpleasant for women, who played a pivotal role in the Latino households.

Fabuloso’s colorful solutions with distinguished floral fragrance impressed the homemakers immediately, so much so, that other contemporary brands have tried to imitate the famous look of Fabuloso – colorful liquids to uplift the mood for cleaning.

But does it contain harmful chemicals, enough for any lasting damage? Let’s find out, shall we?

As per the official website, of the Colgate-Palmolive group, the Fabuloso all-purpose cleaning solution contains, water, sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate, and flavored fragrance (lavender, lemon, mint, etc.), sodium Laureth sulfate, sodium chloride, glutaral, citric acid, and lastly, colorants.

Here is a quick note on what the different ingredients in Fabuloso do:

Sodium Dodecylbenzenesulfonate

Creates foam when mixed with water, which in turn cleans or removes dirt and oil from the surface. It is one of the primary cleaning ingredients, used in various cleaning supplements apart from Fabuloso (it can be used inspired by the said product as well!).

The toxicity level of this substance is quite debatable, for many medical blogs have given this substance a clean pass whereas, many others have fervently requested this be considered a hazardous substance.

Although this has caused no reproductive hazard to humans and animals alike till now, a significant amount of sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate can cause chronic as well as acute respiratory problems, coughs, phlegm, and shortness of breath. No carcinogenic effects are observed either.

Sodium Laureth Sulfate

Used as a surfactant, same as dodecylbenzenesulfonate, SLS has the potential to be irritating to the skin and eyes of domestic animals and children (>0.1%).

Some laboratory tests even prove SLS to be instrumental in cataract formation and blindness. But if used nominally, it can be non-irritant and harmless. However, whether or not SLS is carcinogenic is debatable to the experts. Just to be on the safe side, people with sensitive skin or eyes should be careful around this substance.

Glutaral or Glutaraldehyde

Used to increase the shelf-life of the product as well as a disinfectant, glutaraldehyde is highly toxic in terms of almost everything. Exposure to glutaraldehyde may cause the following symptoms: throat and lung irritation, asthma and shortness of breath, dermatitis, sneezing, wheezing, burning eyes, and conjunctivitis. Nevertheless, it is thus far considered a non-carcinogenic component.

Some typical public concerns regarding Fabuloso—

Does Fabuloso contain ammonia?

An ordinary classic cleaning supplement sometimes contains ammonia which can be harmful to people with sensitive eyes, as the volatile fumes of ammonia make our eyes watery.

Even though ammonia is soluble in cold water so the watery feeling can be washed out easily, the prolonged usage of ammonia might not be safe for your eyes! Also, the proportion in which it is used must be considered carefully. Exposure to a high concentration of ammonia causes a burning sensation to the eyes, nose, and respiratory tract and can result in blindness, lung damage, or even death.

The good news is that Fabuloso does not contain ammonia or even ammoniacal substances!

Does Fabuloso contain bleach?

Typically used as a disinfectant, there are different grades of bleach and it is important to use a good quality bleach to get the most effective result. Apart from its use as a disinfectant, bleach can be used as a stain remover on clothes and furniture.

However, it is rather corrosive, therefore, prolonged usage of bleach can damage your skin, as well as its pungent smell, which can be harmful to children and small animals, especially dogs, to their overly-sensitive noses. Might as well keep your little one away from bleach! 

Luckily, the Fabuloso cleaning solution does not contain bleach, as it has a pH level of 7, which is neutral but bleach can be alkaline. So, if you are willing to use a bleach-free cleaning supplement, then the Fabuloso might be the best choice you can get!

Does Fabuloso contain alcohol?

Alcohol became quite instrumental during the Covid-19 pandemic as it is the first-hand cleaning and disinfecting substance, mostly used for medical instruments to make them clean and germ-free. It is a very good quality bactericidal substance with versatile uses. 

However, it is volatile and inflammable, producing a smell that can be harmful to children and pets as well as pregnant women. But does Fabuloso contain alcohol? The answer is, no it doesn’t.

Does Fabuloso contain acid?

Not all variants of Fabuloso contain acid. Citric acid is present in the lemony flavor, as citric acid can break down the coating, exposing layers that are meant to be protected. It is effective for removing soap scum, hard water stains, calcium deposits, and rust. Also, being a mild acid it can be less corrosive as well, which beneficial for the skin.

Does Fabuloso contain vinegar or chlorine?

Fabuloso most definitely does not contain chlorine as there is no bleach in it. However, chlorine-infused cleaning substances are not good for our health as it mainly contains sodium hypochlorite, which, when released in the open air, forms chlorine.

Chlorine is a corrosive gas with highly acidic characteristics and a very dangerous volatile fume that can harm our skin, eyes, throat, and nails. Sometimes, in enclosed spaces, it can make us hyperventilate for air.

So, it is easily understandable that chlorine is decisively harmful to pets, children, and pregnant women. The same goes for vinegar as well, as its tangy smell can be very distractive from our daily chores of cleaning. It contains a diluted aquatic solution of acetic acid, which is, even though a mild acid and quite less harmful, corrosive nevertheless, added with its tangy smell, which is very disturbing.

Thankfully, Fabuloso, having a distinctive floral fragrance, does not contain vinegar.

Is Fabuloso safe for babies and pets?

When used properly according to the instructions given on the label of the bottle, Fabuloso is safe for everybody. But in case of accidentally ingesting it, as all of our little ones have attempted to do once in a while, it can cause severe harm to our skin, digestive tract, or respiratory organs; enough to cause death.

Considering the pros and cons of the ingredients, it neither has any carcinogenic effect, nor any ill effects on reproductive organs, but the distinctive smell and the presence of the cleansing preservative, glutaraldehyde can be dangerous to puppies and kittens.

Is Fabuloso safe for pregnancy?

During pregnancy, women tend to be extra sensitive toward their sense of smell. While Fabuloso does not contain anything that can harm the developing fetus directly, it does contain some ingredients which affect our respiratory system.

Cough, phlegm, sore throat, and burning sensation in the wind-pipe, are some symptoms expecting mothers can look out for. In some cases, the skin, which is undergoing some changes due to hormonal problems, can be affected as well.

Although using the product in the right dilution should not be harming anybody, some women can feel a bit of nausea due to the distinctive smell of those solutions. All things considered, new mothers can put off cleaning with this solution if they are avoiding any physical discomfort. Sorry, Ladies!

What happens when you accidentally drink Fabuloso?

Fabuloso is a cleaning supplement, made up of inedible substances, of course, it cannot be applied orally or ingested. It is meant to be cleaning your household, so it must be put to use there, away from the curious eyes of your children and furry friends. It is indeed made up of harmful chemicals, but not hazardous ones.

Anyone or their pet ingesting Fabuloso must be taken to a healthcare facility immediately since it can be fatal.

Categorized as Q&A