Friday, 22 April 2016

Harmful Chemicals (Toxins) In Cosmetics/Personal Care Products: A Detailed Review

Hi lovelies,

Hope you all are doing well.
My today's post is very different from routine product reviews or hauls. It is related to our health.
We all want a healthy body and a healthy and beautiful skin. For this purpose we use different cosmetics, personal and skin care products.  These product are made up of a lot of ingredients which include harmful chemicals too.
In fact we use a lot of harmful chemicals in the name of cosmetics in our daily life. Even those girls/women who use minimal makeup products or even don't wear makeup at all, still they are using these chemicals in facewash, body wash, shampoos, conditioners moisturizers etc. Even baby care products are not spare of them.

Labels on cosmetics and body care products are sometimes difficult to understand for a layman. It is usually impossible to trust the claims that manufacturers place on their products. A word such as “natural” can be used by anyone for anything. Even “organic” is sometimes misleading.

The best thing we consumers can do is read ingredient lists carefully in order to avoid chemicals that are known to be harmful.
I am also a layperson in this regard. Before writing this post I was aware of a few ingredients used in cosmetics like talc, lead, mica, parabens, but still didn't know that they are so harmful. One ingredient is "fragrance/parfume"", this word itself is so misleading, in fact it is also a chemical.

I have decided to do a series of posts regarding harmful chemicals found in cosmetics/personal care products. Because once you know the damage they cause to our body you will definitely try to avoid them. Although it is very difficult,  may be impossible to find a 100% natural or chemicals free product, but at least we can try to avoid as much as we can.
There is a long list of chemicals , some are difficult to pronounce, but I have listed those that are mostly used or are banned but still used.

Coal Tar:  Used in dry skin treatments, anti-lice and anti-dandruff shampoos, also listed as a colour plus number, i.e. FD&C Red No. 6. Banned in EU but still used in North America. A known cancer causing agent.

DEA/TEA/MEA: Used as emulsifiers and foaming agents for shampoos, body washes, soaps. Suspected cancer causing agent.

Formaldehyde:  found in nail products, hair dye, fake eyelash adhesives, shampoos. Banned in the EU. Probable cancer causing agent and irritant.

Fragrance/Parfume: Fragrance is connected to headaches, dizziness, asthma, and allergies.

Hydroquinone: Used for lightening skin. Banned in the UK, rated most toxic and linked to cancer and reproductive toxicity.

Lead: Used in lipstick and hair dye, but never listed because it’s a contaminant, not an ingredient. Known cancer causing agent.

Mercury: Known allergen that impairs brain development. Found in mascara and some eyedrops.

Mineral oil: By-product of petroleum that’s used in baby oil, moisturizers, styling gels. It creates a film that impairs the skin’s ability to release toxins.

Oxybenzone: Used in chemical sunscreen and is linked to allergies, hormone disruption, cellular damage, low birth weight.

Parabens: Used as preservatives, found in many products. Linked to cancer, endocrine disruption, reproductive toxicity.

Paraphenylenediamine (PPD): Used in hair products and dyes, but toxic to skin and immune system.

Phthalates:  Present in many fragrances, perfumes, deodorants, lotions. Linked to endocrine disruption, liver/kidney/lung damage, cancer.

Placental extract: Used in some skin and hair products, but linked to endocrine disruption.

Polyethylene glycol (PEG): Penetration enhancer used in many products.

Silicone-derived emollients: Used to make a product feel soft,  prevent skin from breathing. Linked to tumour growth and skin irritation.

Sodium lauryl (ether) sulfate (SLS, SLES): It is used to make soap foamy, it’s absorbed into the body and irritates skin.

Talc:  It is found in baby powder, eye shadow, blush, deodorant. Linked to ovarian cancer and respiratory problems.

Toluene: It is used in nail and hair products. Often hidden under fragrance. Can disrupt immune system and endocrine system.

Triclosan: Present in antibacterial products, hand sanitizers, and deodorants, it is linked to cancer and endocrine disruption.
(Information/pictures source: Google)

That was a detailed list of ingredients along with their harmful effects on our body.
We all must try to make a habit to check the ingredients before purchasing any cosmetics or body care products. If we can do it before purchasing food items then why not for these things. And these body care items are obviously used by whole family , so all are affected including children. One wise decision can save whole family. So next time when you purchase these items then compare different brands on the basis of these toxic ingredients too, the one which has less amomg others, buy that one.

Girls that was all for today. This was my first instalment of the series of harmful chemicals in cosmetics.. I hope my this effort will be helpful for you and it would be a step forward towards a healthy lifestyle for all of us.

Plz do give your feedback and suggestions about my today's post and what you want to read on my blog, in comments section.
Till next time, take care and stay happy.

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  1. very nice items! thanks for sharing!

    Inside and Outside Blog
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  2. super items :)

    p.s following you with G+ please follow back whit gfc :)

    Little Obsessions

  3. such a great informative post dear thx for sharing

  4. Thank you for following :)

    follow you back whit GFC

    Little Obsessions

  5. Yeah that's one of the resone i don't buy heap cosmetics very helpful post

    Glamorous without the Guilt

    1. Thanks dear. We should select products very carefully.

  6. Very informative post. Many cheap brands use these chemicals that can be really harmful for the skin if used continuously. Your post helped me much and am sure it will help many others too. Keep it up

    1. Huda not only cheap brands but many well known brand's products also contain such chemicals, I will be discussing them in my future posts InshaAllah.

    2. Huda not only cheap brands but many well known brand's products also contain such chemicals, I will be discussing them in my future posts InshaAllah.

    3. Yeah agreed many known brands are using such products too. Looking forward to your next post on this :)

  7. This was a very informative post Shumail. Most of us are aware that chemicals are not good for our skin or health yet we still live in an illusion of all of them being good quality and non-toxic products. I'll be looking at ingredients and labels more carefully now. Thanks for sharing. :) x

    Momina Haseeb @ ๑ Divine Smudge ๑

    1. Thanks Momina and welcome to my blog. It's true that we are just fascinated by the products and don't even bother to check their ingredients. I think everyone should know what he/she is using on the face or body.

  8. Hey! Thank you so much for sharing this, I will be more careful towards ingredients the next time I buy something. This is a great post. :)

  9. I'd be nice of you would also suggest makeup/personal care brands that don't use these harmful ingredients. Because literally whenever i read the ingredients list it always contains these and im so scared about it. Are their any solutions?

    1. Thanks for visiting my blog. I will definitely be doing a series of posts on this topic. And you will get your answers in my upcoming posts for sure.

  10. Informative post. With all these ingredients in makeup it becomes hard to decide whether to go for a certain product or not.

    1. Yup right, when you know the damage these chemicals may cause, the decision becomes really hard.