Avoid using these 6 common toxic ingredients often found in cosmetics.
When it comes to cosmetics, shiny packaging, magazine and TV advertisements often lure us in, but little do we realize what chemicals some of these cosmetics may contain. Research shows that “one in eight of the 82,000 ingredients used in personal care products are industrial chemicals, including carcinogens, pesticides, reproductive toxins, and hormone disruptors.” Some of the ingredients used were never intended for skin care, as they are industrial and dangerous for our bodies and the environment. As you go through this list cross reference your beauty products currently present in your household and you will be surprised at how many of your favorites contain them:
- Parabens – The most common preservative used in many cosmetics. This toxic chemical can also be hidden on the ingredient list as a fragrance. Parabens are easily absorbed into your skin and have been proven to interfere with hormone function. Synthetically, they are derived from petrochemicals when used in cosmetics.
- Petrolatum or Petroleum Jelly – Mostly used as an oil byproduct in lip balms and some hair products. It is water-repellent and used as a seal to lock moisture in the skin. It’s deceiving oily and soft texture gives the illusion of shine and moisture. The European Union classified Petrolatum as a carcinogen, which is associated with causing cancer.
- BHA and BHT – Another common preservative used in make-up and moisturizers. This ingredient can cause an allergic reaction in the skin and it is another possible cancer-causing carcinogen. It’s not only unhealthy for our bodies but it also harmful to fish and other marine wildlife.
- Artificial Colours – Coal tar-derived colors are used in cosmetics and hair dyes. This substance is derived from petroleum but is made of many different chemicals and metals. They are known to cause cancer and are toxic to the brain.
- Parfum/Fragrance – This term on your ingredients list is a tricky one because as many as 3000 chemicals are labeled as ‘fragrance’.The problem with fragrances in cosmetics is that not all of them have been tested for toxicity. Many of these chemicals can cause irritations, allergies, migraines and other symptoms.
- PEG Compounds – Often used as a cream base and thickeners in cosmetics. Since PEG’s may be contaminated with ethylene oxide and dioxide, which are known to be human carcinogens, this ingredient should be a no-go in your cream.
Terrified after reading about these harmful and toxic ingredients commonly found in cosmetics? Not to worry, the best approach is to stay informed about what is harmful and what to avoid. By carefully reading ingredient lists of products you are able to determine what is good and what is bad.
Since cosmetics need preservatives to be safe, it is important to opt in for non-toxic ones instead. An all-natural cosmetic solution is the way to go, however, ensure you are using products that are not only non-toxic but also safe to use. There are a number of natural preservatives that are non-toxic and not harmful to the body and environment but still make cosmetics safe to use. It is important to understand that preservatives in cosmetics are necessary in products formulated with water to emulsify the ingredients.
Some great natural preservatives include vitamin E, honey, grapefruit seed extract, and essential oils. Always opt in for natural oils such as hemp oil, coconut oil, olive oil as well as plant based extracts. These natural ingredients have powerful effects on your skin and are healthy for your body, ensuring you receive the proper dose of nutrients.
In conclusion, always stay educated about the choices you make when it comes to buying your cosmetics. Keep in mind all the facts about harmful and toxic ingredients to avoid, but also be careful when choosing an alternative to ensure it is a safe one.