Hexyl Cinnamal is a Hexyl cinnamic aldehyde (Hexyl cinnamaldehyde or HCA), a natural aromatic compound found in chamomile essential oil, with a fresh jasmine-like floral odor. HCA is a clear yellow liquid and is a food-grade fragrance ingredient used as a flavoring agent in the food and pharmaceutical industries, a perfume component (also fixative), and a masking agent in personal care preparations.
In perfume, the use of Hexyl cinnamaldehyde can be up to 30% thanks to good substantivity for up to 48 hours and a finer jasmine-like floralness with a more delicate character than relative fragrances. It blends easily with more volatile chemicals and helps in the fixation of the fragrance.
In skin care applications, Hexylcinnamaldehyde is used primarily as a fragrance or masking agent that covers the unpleasant scents of active ingredients in the formulation. Thanks to its antimicrobial action, Hexyl Cinnamal can act as a preservative booster, prolonging the shelf-life of preparation by up to two years. In addition, Hexyl Cinnamic Aldehyde also exhibits antioxidant properties, protecting skin cell membranes and DNA from free radicals and oxidative stress, but usually, formulators stabilize it with other antioxidants like BHT or BHA valuing its masking property.
Hexyl Cinnamal is a close relative of Amyl Cinnamic Aldehyde one of the world's first perfumery synthetics and is the preference of many perfumers who consider Hexylcinnamaldehyde to be more floral and less fatty. It has the same general floral characteristics as Amyl Cinnamic Aldehyde and can be found in numerous soaps, shampoos, detergents, antiperspirants, and cosmetics.