Ask Nikita: What is methylisothiazolinone and is it used in Bio-D products?

ask nikitaIn our first ‘Ask Nikita’ blog post, we’re asking our resident super-chemist Nikita all about methylisothiazolinone – known as MI or MIT – which has been in the headlines a lot, for all the wrong reasons.

We’ve received numerous enquiries from customers about MIT – there are concerns that it causes and exacerbates contact dermatitis (the nasty condition which can make skin red, itchy and blistered.)

Here, Nikita explains more about MIT and if it is ever included in any Bio-D products. Over to you Nikita!

Nikita says: “Methylisothiazolinone – known as MI or MIT – is used in a wide range of personal care products: shampoos, hand washes, baby wipes and more. It is a preservative and a powerful biocide, capable of killing living organisms (germs).

Dermatologists warn that people are being exposed to much higher doses of MIT than ever before, which has led to a steep rise in allergies known as contact dermatitis, where the skin becomes red, itchy and blistered. One in 12 adults and one in five children in the UK now have eczema, of which contact dermatitis is one of the most common types.

It’s been said that MIT is second only to nickel in causing contact allergies. MIT was previously mixed with another preservative, Methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCI). But concerns about MCI causing allergies meant that some manufacturers started using MIT as a single agent. Used alone, it has been included in products at a much higher concentration. And experts say that since its concentration in products increased, there has been a serious rise in cases of contact dermatitis.

geranium handwashAt Bio-D, we aim to avoid adding unnecessary ingredients to our products; where appropriate, we use the scale of pH to help us preserve them. Most bacteria cannot function in lower or higher pH ranges, and our products that need to be mixed with water before use (Washing Up Liquid, Hand Wash) become neutral in pH when used. There is no need to add any extra biocides.

In our disinfectant and sanitising products (All Purpose Sanitiser; Home and Garden Sanitiser), we use lactic acid, which is derived from corn and occurs naturally in the body; it’s a very effective preservative. And these products tend to be at the lower end of the pH range anyway, because of the inclusion of lactic acid – so again do not require any additional, unnatural preservative.

Where we DO require a preservative – in products such as Furniture Polish and Bathroom Cleaner- we use food grade preservative with the lowest level of risk attached to it, avoiding the need for ‘nasties’ such as parabens and MIT.

Got a question for Nikita? Get in touch via Facebook or Twitter, or email us at .

Tips for an Autumn Clean!

Autumn_1405605211October feels like the perfect time for a refresh of the home and to get everything in order for the cold months ahead. Here are our steps for a good autumn clean:

Clean your windows

It’s not always a job at the top of the priority list, but thankfully Bio-D Glass and Mirror Cleaner makes light work of giving windows the wow factor. Tip: don’t use newspaper to clean windows! Newspaper ink usually has a latex base that will leave smear marks.

Re-order furniture

You may want to move furniture around post-summer to block any air passages and minimise drafts, ready for the cold weather. Give furniture and shelves a spray with Bio-D Furniture Polish, and get rid of any books and clutter you don’t need by donating to charity.

Organise your wardrobes

Pack away summer clothes if you’re short on room, and be ruthless with throwing out anything that’s been unworn for a long time. (Yes including that one item you just know you’ll squeeze into again, even though the fashion police have had a warrant out for it since the 80s.) Freshen up clothes and bedding that have been stored for a while with Fabric Conditioner.

Throw out old food, medicines and bathroom products

Clear out kitchen and bathroom cupboards, checking sell-by dates on old products and throwing out anything you don’t use. Give cupboards a spray with All-purpose Sanitiser and keep bins germ-free with Home and Garden Sanitiser (formerly Disinfectant).

Don’t forget the garden

Say goodbye to the garden for another summer (sob!) by cleaning any outdoor furniture, decking, drains and guttering – our Home and Garden Sanitiser is great for this too. You’ll be back outside again before you know it!

Celebrating 25 sustainable years with a festive competition

Santa XmasLeading Hull based ethical cleaning and laundry products manufacturer, Bio-D is calling on children’s artistic talents to help them to design a 25th anniversary Christmas card.

To celebrate 25 sustainable years of making environmentally friendly products at its Sutton Fields factory, Bio-D is inviting schoolchildren to enter a competition to win a year’s subscription to the Wildlife Trust.

Commenting on the competition, Bio-D’s Sales and Marketing Director Sara Holtby said: “We’re very proud to have reached our 25th anniversary and couldn’t have done it without the support of our customers.  We wanted our junior fans to be able to join in the celebrations too, so we have set up the design a Christmas card competition.”

To enter, children should draw a Christmas picture with an eco theme and send it to Bio-D before 30th November.  The winner will be selected on 1st December. Please see for a full list of terms and conditions. Entries can also be made via the website and via facebook.

The wildlife theme complements the work that Bio-D has done in the Wolds village of Nunburnholme with The Warter Five in Humberside Police’s Lifestyle Project.


Eco Business celebrates success in national Business Competition

We’re thrilled to bring you our latest news..

RRAwards - Commended for Excellence Logo (4)Directors and staff at Hull eco business, Bio-D are celebrating after being awarded a Commendation for a prestigious Red Ribbon Innovation Award at a London awards ceremony last week.

Hosted by Family Business Place, the Red Ribbon awards recognise the achievements of family-run companies of all sizes and across all sectors and held an awards ceremony at Goldsmith’s Hall recently.

Bio-D was shortlisted in the Excellence in Innovation Category and was delighted to be ’Commended for Excellence’ for their range of ethically responsible cleaning and laundry products that are made in their Sutton Fields based factory.

Of the success, Managing Director Lloyd Atkin, who received the award said: “This is the first time that we have entered the Red Ribbon awards and we’re very proud that, not only did we reach the final, but our business was Commended.”


Bio-D celebrates first order from China

Here’s our latest press release that tells about our very first order into China!


A Hull based manufacturer of environmentally friendly cleaning products is celebrating after winning its first contract to supply a company in China.

Tcoai Trading in Shanghai approached the Bio-D Company after researching them on the internet and the first consignment has just arrived.  The Shanghai business will sell a range of Bio-D’s most popular cleaning and laundry lines through its website and retail outlets and has shown its commitment by registering the brand in China. It has also listed Bio-D products in Amazon China.

Directors at the Sutton Fields business are delighted with the prestigious export order.  Managing Director, Lloyd Atkin said; “We’re very encouraged by the growth in exports over the last few years.  We now export to over a dozen countries and export sales account for 10% of our turnover.  We have very high hopes for sales of our products in China.”

Bio-D is an independent, ethically motivated company that is dedicated to promoting the use of environmentally responsible detergents. It manufactures environmentally responsible cleaning and laundry products that are UK made, effective, biodegradable and hypoallergenic.  They are produced from sustainable, naturally derived raw materials and do not contain chlorine or optical brighteners. All of the Bio-D range is suitable for use with septic tanks and are Cruelty Free International (formerly BUAV) and Vegan Society registered.

Sara and Lloyd

Proud to be from Hull

We’re very proud to be from Hull…this is where we make all of our ethically responsible and environmentally friendly cleaning and household products.

Hull is bidding to be UK City of Culture 2017 and students from Hull Trinity House Academy bade bon voyage to members of Hull’s UK City of Culture 2017 team as they headed to Derry-Londonderry this morning ahead of their final presentation to an independent panel of judges.

Ahead of the final presentation, a short film that captures the hopes, aspirations and passion of the people of Hull was launched. The film will be played to the UK City of Culture 2017 judges as part of the city’s final presentation;

Narrated in part by Sir Tom Courtenay and featuring Larkin poetry, the film depicts what is at the heart of Hull – its diverse range of people – and highlights the city’s individuality.

The film belongs to everyone in the city - it is being played for pupils at city schools and a further 20,000 people who gather for the annual Christmas Lights Switch-on in Queen Victoria Square will also see the film projected onto a large screen on Thursday 14 November.

A team of ambassadors from the arts, community and the council will make Hull’s final presentation in the City of Culture bidding process on 14 November. The other Candidate Cities also present their final pitch in Derry ahead of the announcement on who will be the UK’s City of Culture 2017 by the Department of Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) on November 20.

Back the bid… say #HullYes!

For Hull to win, we have to show that the whole city is behind the bid.

Already, over 11,000 people have backed the bid on social media, many people and organisations have written letters or sent messages of support and over 2,000 people had their pictures taken in our 2017 Hull picture frame! Twenty business from across Hull and the surrounding areas have signed up to the Hull 2017 Angels initiative helping to make history for Hull’s UK City of Culture 2017 bid which has now achieved its initial private-sector sponsorship target.

This enormous support helps to clearly demonstrate how much Hull wants to win the bid and there is still time to show your support.  You can get behind the bid by:

  • following the bid on Twitter @2017Hull, using #Hull2017 and #HullYes hashtags
  • liking and sharing content via Hull City of Culture on Facebook
  • uploading photographs onto Instagram – tagging them using #Hull2017
  • watching and commenting on cultural videos on Youtube
  • tagging photographs on Flickr using #Hull2017

Letters can also be written and sent to – UK City of Culture Bid Team, Guildhall, Alfred Gelder Street, Hull, HU1 2AA

Plus if you are a creative organisation who has some videos or some original Hull music, film, plays, dance, poetry readings, events etcetera, you can send them, or a link a link to a large file sending service (eg. Dropbox or YouSendIt), to and we will upload it to our 2017Hull YouTube Channel.

Please help us to help our fabulous city become City of Culture 2017

Thank you

Sara and Lloyd