Thursday, March 19, 2009

How Safe Are Your Personal Care Products and Cosmetics?

Most personal care products like shampoos, conditioners, cosmetics and make-ups are used by millions every day. But do you know how they are made and are you familiar with the ingredients they contain?

Studies show that most cosmetic companies add synthetic ingredients to their products that may cause cancer or reproductive damage over the years of sustained used. According an EWG (Environmental Working Group) survey, more than a quarter of women in the total population and one of every 100 men are using at least 15 different personal care products per day, which means greater exposure to toxic ingredients.

Based from the EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database, here are some of the toxic ingredients that you should avoid:

1. Mercury

This heavy metal is known as a possible human carcinogen and a human reproductive or developmental toxin. Used in some eye drops, ointments and mascaras (it’s listed as "thimerosal" on labels).

2. Placenta

Placenta produces hormones like progesterone and estrogen, which may disrupt your body's normal hormone functions and could lead to breast cancer and other health problems. Found in some hair relaxers, moisturizers and toners.

3. Petrochemicals

These byproducts of crude oil may be labeled as petrolatum, mineral oil or paraffin. They are suspected or known carcinogens and may also break down into toxic products such as dioxane and are used in some hair relaxers, shampoos, anti-aging creams, mascaras, perfumes, foundations, lipsticks and lip balms.

4. Phthalates

Phthalates are used in some nail polishes, fragrances and hair sprays. It is a plasticizing chemical classified as a probable reproductive or developmental toxin and endocrine disrupter. Two phthalates, dibutyl and diethylhexyl have been banned in the European Union.

5. Hydroquinone

This ingredient is a possible carcinogen, a probable reproductive or developmental toxin and endocrine disrupter that may leave permanent black-blue lesions on your skin. Hydroquinone is an ingredient in some skin lightening products and moisturizers.

Now that you have been warned of the hidden dangers of personal care products, it is advisable to read labels before buying anything to check if the ingredients are all-natural and safe. Here are some safe and gentle ingredients:

• Aloe Vera
• Plant extracts
• Essential Oils
• Organic oils

Your skin is the biggest organ in your body. Watch what you put on it in the same way that you watch what you eat.

1 comment:

Gel-Nails said...

Interesting content.

Just wanted to share some information that may help busy professionals caught up with work and who have less time to maintain their nails. You can try out gel nails which are now becoming a hot favorite as they are natural looking even without nail tips and the best way for nail enhancement. Also, if you are allergic to those strong smelling chemicals which you can experience with acrylic nails, then you should use gel nails as these are odorless.

However, when you are planning on gel nail application, make sure you approach a nail salon or a nail artist who is well versed with gel nails and is properly trained and mastered in gel applications. This will save you from problems that can arise with improper gel nail applications.