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Six Toxins You May Be Putting On Your Skin!
We’ve all been there, browsing the drugstore for a new lotion or sunscreen when our eye is drawn to an attractive bottle. We pretend to read the back of the label because well, that’s what informed shoppers do. Having no idea what we are reading, we scan the list of words that sound vaguely familiar because we copied them from our neighbor’s test back in high school. Unfortunately, many of these ingredients are toxic and in items you may be using everyday. Bring a cheat-sheet to the store with these 6 chemicals and you’ll be good to go!
1. Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulfate- Commonly found in shampoo, face wash, hand soap and toothpaste, this detergent can cause rashes, eye damage, mouth sores, and hair loss. Shampoos with SLS tend to make hair shinier than those without. If you are starting to notice a build up, allow apple cider vinegar sit for 3 minutes after shampooing. Rinse and condition. You will get the same effect as SLS shampoos without the chemicals. One of the products to stay clear from is Neutrogena's Pure Mild Facial Cleanser. Try using Eminence's Organics Blueberry Soy Exfoliating Cleanser instead.
2. Mineral Oil and other petroleum products- Petrochemical-based ingredients (look for words beginning with a propyl-, methyl- or ethe-) don’t absorb into the skin and prevent skin respiration.
3. Parabens- Common in a variety of products, this skin irritant helps preserve the shelf life of products but has been linked to breast cancer!
4. Formaldehyde- Nasty smelling chemical used to preserve the animals your biology teacher made you dissect. The EPA has classified it as a human carcinogen. Your product label wont typically list formaldehyde. Look for it in this form:
diazolidinyl urea (or 3-diol diazolidinyl urea)
2-bromo-2-nitropropane-1 (or bronopol)
5. Phthalates (DBP, DEP) – Used to create a thin film in products like nail polish and mascara, this toxic ingredient has been linked to birth defects! Check your lotion as well. Manufacturers use it to help lotion absorb into the skin. L’Oreal France stopped using it in their nail polish lines but L’Oreal USA still does!
6. Selenium Sulfide- Found in many anti-dandruff shampoos, this topical anti-fungal ingredient lowers the turnover rate of skin cells but can cause hair loss or discoloration (turns a greenish color!), vomiting, oily scalp, skin and eye irritation, abdominal pain and possibly damage internal organs. Do not use Selsun products, they are full of this toxic ingredient! Try the Keratin Complex hair care products instead!
Before you freak out, the good news is many skincare lines are going to great lengths to make natural products without toxins. You still need to slow down and actually read the labels. Now that you have some chemistry under your belt you’ll be surprised at how many “All Natural” product brands still contain toxins. Don’t let the packaging with pictures of grass and muted color pallets fool you! Check out Eminence, Epicuren, and Image Skincare for toxin free options that still deliver!
Really appreciated the information on toxins to avoid. There was a moisturizer in one of the pictures on good thing to drink and I could not read it. I am loking for a good moisturizer for extremely dry aging skin. thanks, jt
Great information. Cosmeticdatabase.org let’s you research different brands and gives you toxin ratings. Very helpful.
Great information . . . I like having it in a list form so I can take it to the store with me! Thanks!