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zinc sulfate hydrate is a moderately water and acid soluble source of Zinc for uses compatible with sulfate compounds. Sulfate salts are complexes of sulfuric acid that have replaced one or both of the hydrogen ions with a metal (see the article on ZINC SULFATE). Sulfate compounds react as acids to neutralize bases and generate heat. They do not usually react as oxidizing agents or reducing agents but are capable of catalyzing organic reactions.
This compound is a common ingredient in many skincare products including face wash, lotions and shampoos. It is a highly effective skin conditioner and can also be found in some anti-aging serums. zinc sulfate hydrate also has many industrial applications such as a coagulant in the production of rayon and a precursor to the pigment lithopone. It is also used in the printing industry and as a preservative for leather and skin. Brewers use it as a yeast nutrient to increase alcohol yield in fermentation.
This substance is generally considered to have low toxicity and has an acceptable environmental profile. However, high concentrations can be a skin irritant and eye hazard. zinc sulfate hydrate releases a gas that may be irritating to the respiratory tract if inhaled. It is also a strong skin and eye irritant when mixed with ethanol. This chemical can be absorbed into the body through the skin or respiratory system and is eliminated mainly through urine, sweat and saliva. The toxicity of this compound is similar to that of zinc oxide and the exposure of people who work with it should be limited by proper ventilation and use of protective equipment.