Inedible Chametz products such as Shampoo, soap, perfume

 

Must inedible products [i.e. Shampoo, soap, perfume etc.] be Kosher for Pesach?
Owning: All Chametz that has become inedible even for dogs before the 6th hour of Erev Pesach is permitted for one to own and benefit from on Pesach, although it is Rabbinically forbidden to eat it intentionally.[1] If however, the Chametz has not become inedible for dogs, then it is Biblically forbidden to own, benefit or eat on Pesach.[2] Nonetheless, this prohibition against owning Chametz that is still edible for dogs only applies to an actual visible piece of Chametz that is not [disintegrated] and mixed into another [inedible] item. However, if even complete Chametz which was fit for eating became mixed into an item that is not edible for people at all, or is not edible for all people, such as medicines [i.e. Tiraka[3]] which are eaten only by the sick, then it is permitted to own it on Pesach. This applies even if the mixture contains much more than a Kezayis of Chametz within Achilas Peras [i.e. more than 27 grams of Chametz per 176[4] grams of the product].[5] [This however only applies if the Chametz ingredient is disintegrated and cannot be separated from the mixture. However, if the Chametz ingredient has retained its texture and can be removed from the mixture, then it is forbidden to even own such a mixture.[6] Accordingly, all Non-edible products, such as cosmetics, shoe polish, soap, shampoo, deodorant, and any matter of the like, may be owned throughout Pesach even if they contain a Chametz ingredient, as their Chametz ingredient cannot be separated from the mixture. Despite the above, some[7] sale contracts of Mechiras Chametz sell such products to the gentile. Practically, however, this seemingly should not be done.[8]]

Eating: Nevertheless, it remains [Rabbinically[9]] forbidden to eat from this mixture on Pesach. This applies even if the mixture only contains a minute amount of Chametz [to the point that there is 60x against it in the mixture], if the Chametz placed into the mixture is part of its normal ingredients, such as is common in certain medicines[10] [like the Tiraka] and other mixtures of the like. In such a case the Chametz is not nullified to the other ingredients [irrelevant of ratio], as explained in 442/6. [The same applies if the Chametz was purposely placed into the mixture in order to be allowed to eat it on Pesach, then it is not nullified even in 60x.[11] However, if the Chametz is not a normal ingredient for this product and it was placed into it purposely in order to eat on Pesach, then if the Chametz is nullified in 60x before Pesach it is permitted to even eat on Pesach.[12]]

Benefiting from the product:[13] Any [Chametz product] which is permitted to be owned [over Pesach] one may likewise receive benefit from it on Pesach. Thus, for example one may sell it to a gentile, or receive from it another form of benefit. [Accordingly, on Pesach one may sell all non-edible products, such as cosmetics, shoe polish, soap, shampoo, deodorant, and any matter of the like, even if they contain a Chametz ingredient. One may likewise use the product for whatever purpose he desires. Regarding smearing the product on the body-See Q&A]

Summary:

All Non-edible products that contain disintegrated Chametz may be owned and benefited from throughout Pesach. Thus, one may own and benefit from cosmetics, shoe polish, soap, shampoo, gas, deodorant, and any matter of the like even if they contain a Chametz ingredient. Regarding smearing the product on the body-See Q&A

Q&A

May non-edible Chametz products [i.e. Shampoo, soap, perfume etc.] be used on the body?[14]
Some Poskim[15] rule that smearing is similar to drinking by all prohibitions even if the food is now inedible, and hence it is possible[16] to deduce according to these Poskim that just as one may not eat non-edible Chametz products, similarly one may not smear them on his body. Accordingly, one may not wash his body with Chametz soap, shampoo, or spray himself with Chametz cologne, perfume, and the like. Majority of Poskim[17] however rule that smearing is not like eating in this regard and it is thus permitted to use any of the above items on one’s body. Practically, the widespread custom is to be lenient[18], although many are stringent in this matter.[19] Some Rabbanim[20] conclude that so is the proper custom to be stringent, as the Arizal states[21]  that it is proper to be stringent like all the stringencies on Pesach. [This applies to all products that clearly have a Chametz ingredient. However, those products which one does not know if they have a Chametz ingredient, and simply don’t have a Hashgacha, seemingly there is no need to be stringent at all, although those who desire to be stringent are to purchase such products with a Hashgacha for Pesach.]

Summary of laws on this topic

Must Non-edible products be Kosher for Pesach?

Non-edible products that contain Chametz may be owned and benefited from throughout Peach.

Chametz ink: One may write with a pen that contains Chametz ink.

Q&A

May one own cosmetics, shoe polish, soap, gas, cleaning alcohol, medicines on Pesach, if they contain Chametz?
Yes.

May non-edible Chametz products be used on the body?
Some Poskim rule that smearing is similar to drinking, and hence just as one may not eat non-edible Chametz products, similarly one may not smear them on his body. Other Poskim rule it is completely permitted. Practically, the widespread custom is to be lenient, although many are stringent in this matter.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach deodorant and perfume, facial creams, oils, and cosmetics?
Yes. However many are stringent today in this matter. 

May one own or use Play dough/Play-doh:
Play-doh is made up of actual Chametz. It is made of flour water and food coloring. It must be destroyed before Pesach or sold to a gentile. If one did not do so then he is to destroy it on Pesach as soon as he remembers. Nevertheless a blessing is not recited upon destroying it. If one sold his Chametz then the play dough is to be placed in the area sold to the gentile.

May one lick the back of stamps and envelopes which have a suspicion of containing Chametz ingredients on its glue part?
Some Poskim write against doing so.

Does lip stick need a Hashgacha for Pesach?
Many are stringent in this matter.

Does chap stick need a Hashgacha for Pesach?
Many are stringent in this matter.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach detergent to clean his clothing?
Yes, as the detergent is not edible and even if it falls into ones food one has no intention to eat it.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach cleaning sprays and soap for ones floor?
Yes.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach dish soap for washing dishes and cutlery?
From the letter of the law, one may use Chametz soap for his dishes and cutlery being that the soap is not fit for eating, and even if some of it gets on the food it’s not a problem being that one does not have intention to eat it. Nevertheless, the custom is to be stringent to purchase Kosher for Pesach soap.

May one use or own pure Chametz alcohol?
No. If however it is not pure alcohol one may use it.

May one use or own non-Kosher for Pesach medicinal creams?
Yes. This may be done according to all.

May one smoke cigarettes which have their Tabaco or rolling paper coated with Chametz?
No.

May one eat on non-Kosher for Pesach plastic/paper plates and cuttlery?
Plastic plates and cutlery may be used. Paper plates are to be avoided due to worry that a Chametz starch was used.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach Styrofoam plate?
Yes, all types may be used.

May one use eardrops/eye drops/or other medical ointments?
Yes it may be used according to all.

May one use non-Kosher for Pesach toothpaste/mouthwash?
From the letter of the law it may be used. However, many are stringent today in this matter, especially if flavored, as is done for children. 

Does Dental floss require a Hashgacha for Pesach?
No, unless it is flavored.

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[1] Admur 442/21 and 32-34; 433/25 and 445/4 and 11 and 466/3; Michaber 442/9 and 445/2; Pesachim 21b; Rif Pesachim 13b

The reason: As if the Chametz is inedible even to dogs by the time the obligation to destroy Chametz arrives, then this obligation does not befall onto this form of Chametz, as it does not have a status of food and is considered like mere dust. [Admur ibid]

[2] Admur 422/21; Michaber 442/2; Pesachim 45b

The reason it is not considered Chametz Nuksha: The above spoiled Chametz is not considered under the category of Chametz Nuksha being that it was originally fit to be eaten. Chametz Nuksha only refers to Chametz that from the time of its initial leavening it was not fit for eating unless in a pressing situation. Such Chametz was never fit for regular eating in its entire leavened lifespan. However, Chametz that was fit for eating even for moment during its leavened lifespan, remains forbidden even after spoilage for human consumption. [Admur ibid]

[3] The Tiraka was a medicine made from various herbs, including the flesh of a certain snake and crumbs of Chametz. [Rabbeinu Manoach on Rambam 4/10; Ritva Pesachim 45b] See here: https://he.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D7%AA%D7%A8%D7%99%D7%90%D7%A7;

[4] Seder 8/2 in parentheses that a Peras is “Three Kibeitzas.” This is the second opinion in Admur 612/4; Vetzrauch Iyun if in this regard we measure based on grams or based on time, which is 4 minutes. If the latter, than it is impossible to really measure if the bread contains a Kezayis of flour within Peras, as if one did not eat for a full 4 minutes, how is he to tell how much a Peras is, 4 minute’s worth of eating. One must hence conclude that in this regard we measure in grams.

Understanding the above calculation-How much is a Kebeitza in grams: A Kebeitza is two Kezeisim. Now, see Shiureiy Torah 3/8 that regarding bread a Kibeitza is measured as 57.6 grams. Thus, three Kebeitzim of bread is 174 grams. [See Kaf Hachaim 208/53]

[5] Admur 442/22; Michaber 442/1 and 4; Rambam 4/12

The reason: Although it is Biblically forbidden to own a mixture of food that contains a Kezayis of Chametz within Peras, nevertheless, in this case it is permitted as since the Chametz is no longer fit for eating, it has thus lost its Chametz texture, and is no longer Halachically defined as Chametz at all [i.e. It has lost its Toras Chametz]. [Admur ibid; Michaber 442/1; This wording implies that the lack of the texture is a result of it losing its edibility. Vetzaruch Iyun, as what is the connection between the two; a food can retain its structure and still be inedible? However perhaps Admur is saying that being that it is no longer edible, therefore its loss of texture has Halachic meaning to remove it from having din of Chametz, as opposed to if lost its texture but is still edible, like when it was mixed in a dish, then although technically its texture is not seeable, nevertheless since it’s still edible its considered as if it’s still there. Accordingly, we learn from this case that if even complete Chametz became inedible to humans and lost its texture, it is no longer Chametz, just like Chametz that is inedible for dogs [but retains its texture] is no longer Chametz. Perhaps the reason for this is because once its texture is lost its considered destroyed just as one of the ways of destroying Chametz is by crumbling it and throwing it into the air. Similarly, here, once its texture is lost its considered destroyed. Nevertheless, this only applies if the Chametz also becomes inedible, as part of the destruction process [throwing to air] is that it no longer be fit for any human to eat. Accordingly, even if it lost its texture, if it still remains edible, like in a case that it was mixed in a food, then it is still Biblically forbidden as Chametz. Vetzaruch Iyun as to why here we do not decree as we do by Chametz Nuksha that since it is forbidden to eat [Rabbinically] therefore one must destroy it, due to suspicion that he may forget and come to eat it. However, seemingly one can answer simply that since it is not a regular food there is therefore no need for the Sages to suspect that one may come to eat it and thus make such a decree. [Chok Yaakov 442/5]

[6] Admur ibid writes the prohibition applies to Chametz Beiyn; See Divrei Malkiel 4/24 footnote 6

The reason: If the Chametz is not fully mixed into the inedible item, and thus some of it remains a solid separate piece within the mixture then it would be forbidden even to own, as its texture still remains, and Admur implied that one requires both lost of texture and inedibility to remove the Chametz prohibition from the Chametz in the mixture.

If the Chametz is less than a Kezayis within Peras: However, seemingly, if the amount of removeable Chametz in the entire mixture is less than a Kezayis within Peras, then it would still be permitted to own if one did bitul before Pesach, just like any piece of Chametz that is less than a kezayis that if one did Bittul to it and its inedible/dirty, then one may own it.

[7] Divrei Malkiel contract in 4/24; Contract written by Rav Berel Levin in Tikkunei Mechiras Chametz; Contract of Rav Raskin, with Haskama of Rav Landa.

[8] As a) It is permitted to own such products, so why sell them? [See Divrei Malkiel ibid. Vetzaruch Iyun Gadol on his explanation] b) People may use these products on Pesach, as permits the letter of the law and come to be stealing from the gentile.

[9] See Admur in Kuntrus Achron 442/12 who implies the entire prohibition against eating the Tiraka is Rabbinical even if it contains a Kezayis within Peras. The reason for this is because the Chametz is considered destroyed from a Biblical perspective and it is only due to Achshavei, which is a Rabbinical prohibition, that it is forbidden to eat the inedible Chametz mixture. This concept of Achshavei only applies when eating a product and not when benefiting from it.

[10] All Chametz that is added to medicines by doctors and pharmaceutical companies is all considered “a normal ingredient” and is not nullified. [Admur in Kuntrus Achron 442/11 based on Beis Yosef Y.D. 134 in name of Rashba 3/214]

[11] Admur 442/5; Vetzaruch Iyun why here Admur did not record also this condition

[12] See Admur 442/5-6

[13] 442/24; M”A 442/7 regarding the Tiraka; Chok Yaakov 447/13 and 18; Implication of Terumos Hadesehn 113; See also

[14] Background: There is a general discussion in Halacha as to whether smearing an item on one’s body is similar to eating it, or not. This concept is called “Sicha Keshtiya.” We find regarding Yom Kippur that Sicha is Keshtiya. The question is whether this applies only to Yom Kippur, or to all Issurim. We find several opinions on this matter: 1) Some Poskim rule it only applies by Yom Kippur, and not by other Issurim even if done for pleasure purposes. [Implication of Rama 326/10; Nekudas Hakesef Y.D. 117/4 that from letter of law is Mutar; Peri Chadash 117/4; Machazik Bracha 614; Tosafus Yuma 77a and Rashba, Ritva, Tosafus Rosh and Meiri on Nidda ibid; Rashbatz; Beis Yoef 123 in name of Rashba] 2) Others rule it only applies to other Issurim regarding forbidden oils and only when done for pleasure purposes. [Tosafus Niddah 32a] 3) Others rule it applies by all Issurim. [Beis Yosef 117 in name of Orchos Chaim p. 312] 4) Others rule it applies by all Issurim when done for pleasure purposes. [Taz 117/4; Issur Viheter 39/34; Semag; Semak; Zivcheiy Tzedek 117/45; Aruch Hashulchan 117/29; Kaf Hachaim 117/15] Some Poskim rule that according to the stringent opinion this applies even if the Issur is Pagum. [Nekudos Hakesef ibid regarding soap “some are stringent and so is proper”; Shevilei David 117/2; Biur Halacha 326/10 “Veassur” and “Beshaar Cheilev” in name of Gr”a O.C. 326/10 regarding using non-Kosher soap; M”B concludes custom is to be lenient although best to be stringent] Other Poskim rule that even according to the stringent opinion it only applies to other Issurim if the Issur is edible and not Pagum. [Peri Chadash 117/4; Soles Belula 35/13; Beis David 23; Aruch Hashulchan 117/29; Kaf Hachaim 326/45; 117/17] Other Poskim rule that by something that is so Pagum that it is not edible to a dog then the concept of Sicha Keshtiya does not apply according to any opinion. [Aruch Hashulchan ibid seemingly even according to Nekudos Hakesef and Biur Halacha ibid]

[15] Poskim in previous footnote who forbid Sicha by all Issurim in accordance to the Poskim who apply this even to Pagum items: Nekudas Hakesef Y.D. 117/4 regarding Chazir soap; Gr”a O.C. 326/10; Biur Halacha 326/10 “Veassur” and “Beshaar Cheilev” in name of Gr”a regarding using non-Kosher soap. The M”B ibid concludes that the custom of the world is to be lenient [regarding soap] and only the meticulous are careful in this. Nevertheless, he concludes that if one is able to purchase Kosher soap then certainly it is proper to suspect for the stringent opinion.

[16] It is only possible, as perhaps we can accept the argument of the Aruch Hashulchan ibid that a completely Pagum item does not have an Issur of Sicha Keshtiya according to anyone.

[17] All Poskim in previous footnotes who only apply the prohibition of Sicha Keshtiya to Yom Kippur, or to a non-Pagum item or to oil.  

[18] Bach ibid; Nekudos Hakesef ibid; Biur Halacha ibid

[19] Nekudos Hakesef ibid;  The Chabad Rabbeim were stringent in this matter even regarding soap during the year. This hwoever was not a directive to the public. [Heard from Rav Eli Landa Shlita]

[20] Nitei Gavriel Teshuvah 6 [volume 3 p. 393]; Heard from Harav Eli Landa Shlita that on Pesach the custom is to be stringent in this, in light of the ruling of the Arizal

[21] Arizal, brought in Shut Admur 6

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