Laboratory analysis and determination of Titanium dioxide contents (TiO2 or E171)

Titanium dioxide (TiO2 or E171) nanoparticles in everyday products: what are the dangers?

Titanium dioxide, essentially visual qualities

Titanium is a chemical element particularly used by industrialists for its advantageous properties: it is lightweight, resistant to outside factors and is silver in color. As a powder, titanium dioxide (TiO2 or E171) is used in the production of cosmetics (thickening properties), in sun cremes (UV filter), in paint (as a dye or as a thickening agent) or even in medication and toothpaste (whitening agent).    

Historically used on a standard scale as a white pigment, studies have shown that the integration of titanium dioxide in the form of nanoparticles gave rise to new properties, further improving its benefits on products. This discovery quickly generalized the mass use of titanium dioxide (TiO2) in the form of fine nanoparticles in industrial production processes.  The demand for TiO2 nanoparticles multiplied in industrial markets without any real analysis of the risks involved.

White as snow? Not really…

In 2006 IARC classified titanium dioxide, or more specifically the additive denoted E171 as a possible carcinogen for humans when inhaled (it is as of yet unknown whether or not skin contact or ingestion are also cause for concern). In 2014 ANSES classified titanium dioxide nanoparticles as a dangerous substance and put restrictions in place in regards to their use in some products.

These warnings come from the fact that on an infinitely small scale (nano = 1 million times smaller than a human hair), titanium dioxide particles can easily cross physiological barriers and therefore are a risk for human organs. Moreover, it is known today that these particles can build up in the body which cannot get rid of them.

Although standards are not yet completely defined, health organizations are calling for the food industry to limit the use of titanium dioxide. 

FILAB provides analytical services for analyzing and determining Titanium dioxide contents and can assist you in improving your production procedures.

Our services

With extensive experience in analyzing and determining titanium and in developing new specific analytical techniques, FILAB laboratory can assist you in overcoming your challenges linked to the presence of titanium dioxide (TiO2) in your products:

  • ICP-AES or ICP-MS determination of Titanium dioxide
  • Determination of the percentage of TiO2 in accordance with USP standards
  • SEM characterization of Titanium Dioxide powder
  • Granulometric measurements of the size of titanium dioxide particles
  • BET specific surface measurements
  • R&D assistance in finding substitutions

Whatever your field (Chemical, pharmaceutical, cosmetics industries, etc.) the expertise and support of FILAB laboratory will allow you to better understand the stability and the overall nature of your samples in order to better anticipate possible changes in regulations, mainly the restrictions surrounding titanium dioxide.


An independent laboratory with a team made up of doctors and engineers, FILAB guarantees the reliability of its results, ensures a swift processing time for requests and personalized assistance for clients.

If you would like more information about our analytical services and the determination of titanium dioxide, feel free to contact us!

The positive aspects of FILAB

  • A highly qualified team

  • Responsiveness in responding to and processing requests

  • A complete analytical park of 2100m²

  • Tailor-made support

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