Calling all beauties, I am in need of your full alert, can I have your attention, please! This may be a life-changer… Have I gotten your attention now? Good, that’s my point. Here’s a simple question: have you ever thought about all the chemicals that may be in your favorite products? Not as easy as you thought you can answer, don’t worry you’re not dumb-just uninformed. Let me try to help as much as I know. We can all teach each other to buy healthier cosmetic wise.
I always say it is all about the ingredients, and I recommend using products without harmful ingredients.
I never really thought to stop and think about a saying I’ve heard of in the past and until this day I still hear “What You Put On Your Body, Is Just As Important as What You Put In Your Body”… I always thought makeup is supposed to make you look even more beautiful, well that being said; beauty comes at a cost considering how much toxic chemicals are in them. Some of the ingredients in beauty products aren’t as pretty as they advertise them to be. When it comes to beauty products, the effects of the ingredients they contain can be more than just skin deep. It can be more harmful than we might know. The industry is so unregulated that it’s usually impossible to trust manufacturers of what they place on their products. The cosmetics industry uses thousands of synthetic chemicals in its products, they don’t have the best interests of consumers at heart. Knowledge is power! It is time to avoid the nasty chemicals in the beauty/personal care products.
26 Seconds is all it takes for the chemicals to hit your bloodstream in your body.. What chemicals are you using for beauty?!
The best thing we as consumers can do is read ingredient lists carefully in order to avoid chemicals that are known to be harmful, even though they continue to be widely used. Only 11 chemicals have ever been regulated by the FDA for use in cosmetics. And no safety tests are required before beauty products hit store shelves. The chemical industry should have to demonstrate that a chemical isn’t dangerous before it’s used in everyday products. But the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) has no such requirements. It’s time to require that all chemicals be tested for safety and grant the EPA the authority to protect the public from toxic chemicals.
Makeup is supposed to make you look beautiful, but that beauty can come at a cost when you consider the toxic chemicals that are in most brands of makeup, from eye shadows, liners, mascaras, makeup brushes, eyelashes, and false-lash adhesives.
Here are some chemicals commonly found in cosmetics and what they do to us:
Phthalates: Phthalates are a group of endocrine-disrupting chemicals that are found in cosmetics like nail polish and in synthetic fragrance—both perfumes and fragrance ingredients in other cosmetic products. Phthalate exposure has been linked to early puberty in girls, a risk factor for later-life breast cancer. Some phthalates also act as a weak estrogen in cell culture systems.
BHA and BHT: Used mainly in moisturizer and makeup as preservatives. Suspected endocrine disruptions and may cause cancer (BHA). Harmful to fish and other wildlife. BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) are closely related synthetic antioxidants used as preservatives in lipsticks and moisturizers, among other cosmetics. They are also widely used as food preservatives.
Triclosan: Triclosan is used in antibacterial soaps, deodorants, and toothpaste to limit the growth of bacteria and mold. The chemical, which is classified as a pesticide, can affect the body’s hormone systems—especially thyroid hormones, which regulate metabolism—and may disrupt normal breast development. Widespread use of triclosan may also contribute to bacterial resistance to antimicrobial agents.
1,4-dioxane: 1,4-dioxane is not listed on ingredient labels. It is a petroleum-derived contaminant formed in the manufacture of shampoos, body wash, children’s bath products, and other sudsing cosmetics.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has ranked it as a possible carcinogen, and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) has identified it as a reasonably anticipated carcinogen.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR ON THE LABEL: Sodium laureth sulfate, PEG compounds, chemicals that include the clauses xynol, ceteareth, and oleth.
Parabens: Parabens are a group of compounds widely used as an antifungal agent, preservative and antimicrobial in creams, lotions, ointments, and other cosmetics, including underarm deodorants. They are absorbed through the skin and have been identified in biopsy samples from breast tumors.
Ethylene Oxide: Ethylene oxide is used to sterilize surgical instruments. It can also be a contaminant of personal care products such as shampoos and body washes, because it is used to buffer the harshness of some sudsing agents, and trace amounts can be left behind. It is classified as a known human carcinogen and is one of 51 chemicals that the National Toxicology Program (NTP) identifies as mammary carcinogens in animals.
1,3-butadiene: Shaving creams, spray sunscreens and foundations, and anti-fungal treatments that contain the propellant isobutene may be contaminated with the carcinogen 1,3-butadiene. Exposure occurs mainly through inhalation. This chemical has been found to increase mammary tumors in rodents.
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs): Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a group of chemicals that occur naturally in coal, crude oil, and gasoline. One of the more common PAHs is naphthalene. Some cosmetics and shampoos are made with coal-tar and therefore may contain PAHs. They have been shown to increase the risk of breast cancer.
Placental Extract: Placental extract is derived from human or animal placental and is used in hair conditioners, shampoos and other grooming aids, particularly those marketed to women of color. The National Toxicology Program (NTP) has identified progesterone, the major hormonal contaminant in placental extracts, as a reasonably anticipated carcinogen.
Carbon black: Carbon black is a powder found in eyeliner, mascara, eye-shadow, and eyebrow shadow and has been linked to cancer and organ system toxicity.
Fragrance/Parfum: A catchall for hidden chemicals, such as phthalates. The fragrance is connected to headaches, dizziness, asthma, and allergies.
Hydroquinone: Used for lightening skin. Banned in the UK, rated most toxic on the EWG’s Skin Deep database, and linked to cancer and reproductive toxicity.
Mercury: Known allergen that impairs brain development. Found in mascara and some eye drops.
Talc: Similar to asbestos in composition, it’s found in baby powder, eye shadow, blush, deodorant. Linked to ovarian cancer and respiratory problems.
Toluene: Known to disrupt the immune and endocrine systems, and fetal development, it’s used in nail and hair products. Often hidden under fragrance.
Lead: Lead may be a contaminant in over 650 cosmetic products, including sunscreens, foundation, nail colors, lipsticks, and whitening toothpaste. Lead is a proven neurotoxin, linked to learning, language, and behavioral problems. It has also been linked to miscarriage, reduced fertility in men and women, and delays in puberty onset in girls.
Oxybenzone: Active ingredient in chemical sunscreens that accumulates in fatty tissues and is linked to allergies, hormone disruption, cellular damage, low birth weight. Many sunscreens contain chemicals that exert significant estrogen activity, as measured by the increase in proliferation rates of human breast cancer cells in vitro. Studies show these chemicals are accumulating in wildlife and humans.
Read labels carefully.
When purchasing makeup, choose brands with the fewest ingredients possible. Just because a product is labeled “hypoallergenic” or “natural,” doesn’t mean it’s safe. What’s more, “organic” may only refer to the ingredients that are certified organic, not the entire product itself. And always avoid products that contain fragrance. There’s no legal definition of the word natural it’s a marketing claim. “Natural” can be used by anyone for anything. Even “organic” is misleading. When using cruelty-free products you may help save animals, but beware some still have toxic chemicals in them…
I REALLY figured out that the beauty industry doesn’t really care about how truly beautiful woman can be, they are what you call a “multi-billion dollar cosmetic industry”(it’s all about making the money than thinking about safety regulations). Over time, you should replace all harmful personal care products. One thing I would tell you to look for products that have shorter ingredients lists and fewer chemicals, that have names you can actually pronounce. That would be a good start.
How are you becoming more aware of the chemicals in our products? What are the ways you are using non-toxic, chemical-free products? Are you buying smarter non-toxic products? I’d love to hear from you all!
Until next time,