How often do we put makeup on our faces without considering the toxins we expose our body too? One might think that a dab of eye shadow or a smidge of lipstick is harmless, but the reality is far from it. With the many toxins in our environment, or in the pesticides in our food, the impact of the harmful chemicals in our makeup increases manifold. The cosmetic industry feeds off the demand of their customers, completely ignoring the mortal dangers they (industrialists) might be causing. There is a severe lack of health regulation policies in this sector. One of the biggest hazards of these chemicals is their ability to diffuse into our bloodstream, where they may linger long enough to cause hormonal imbalance or in extreme cases, cancers. It is therefore essential to be informed about these toxins, and avoid them as much as possible. Some of the many toxins are below, along with their respective beauty product and health implications.
What chemicals are the major ingredient in beauty products?
Our average beauty cream may contain Hydroquinone, Mercury, Lead or Nickel. Each one of these chemicals can induce allergies, redness, and permanent scarring of the skin. Nail polishes have chemicals such as Toluene, Camphor, and Xylene; exposure to which may have temporary to permanent effects such as dizziness or respiratory disorders. Eyeshadows and blushes are usually laced with Formaldehydes, BHA, Carbon Black and Titanium dioxide. Formaldehyde, found in body washshampoos and other hair products, have been known to cause eye irritation, throat, and respiratory allergies. Researchers, therefore, have restricted its amount to a maximum of 5% in any product. BHA, or BHT, is one of the 12 most harmful chemicals, known otherwise as the ‘Dirty Dozen’, which are prone to cause breast cancers in women. Our moisturizers and lip products have Carbon Black, Coal Tar, and Butylated Compounds as their basic ingredients, which have the potential to disrupt reproductive hormones. Chromium and Arsenic, once consumed, can cause mental retardation and kidney malfunction. Similarly, Silica, used in eyeliners and foundations may penetrate into our lungs. The colors and dyes used in these products, such as D&C Red, is a known carcinogen. Some cosmetic companies may use ‘fragrances’ to mask the smell of chemicals in their products. The fragrance itself can be counted as a toxin that triggers asthma and skin allergies. Toxins such as Phthalates and Parabens are used both in make-up and in our common cleaning liquids, adhesives, and preservatives.
Get a hold on to organic beauty products to avoid harmful chemicals:
It seems almost impossible to avoid all of these chemicals in our everyday makeup products. But there still exist certain brands that opt for harmless ingredients for their products. There are now different websites, which are dedicated tospreading awareness among the cosmetic users, about safe products and companies that produce them. Therefore dedicated make-up users must educate themselves and be cautious while buying any product. Some preventive methods include absolutely limitingthe use of these toxic products, improving our diet by adding more hydrating foods and water to wash out the toxins from our body, or if one is dedicated enough, brewing the make-up products from natural substances yourself. Organic or natural makeup products are also available in the market and online for people around the world.
(Disclaimer: the picture in this articles and the brands are great brands that are not associated with the content of this article)