What Is a Non-Polar Molecule?

A non-polar molecule is a molecule with polar bonds but having a symmetrical molecular structure, or a molecule containing atoms of equal or almost equal electronegativities. The electrons in a non-polar molecule are evenly distributed with respect to the origin.

A non-polar molecule is hydrophobic and will only dissolve in lipids, making it lipophilic. The bonds holding its atoms together are generally covalent, since a non-polar molecule does not form hydrogen bonds. The attractive forces exerted between non-polar molecules are weak intermolecular forces known as the "London dispersion forces." These forces become relatively stronger a higher number of electrons come in contact with each other. Carbon compounds, such as carbon dioxide and methane, are some of the most common non-polar molecules.