10.09.2015

Harmful Ingredients in Cosmetic Products

Does your daily cosmetic-hygienic routine look like, or at least resembles the following: Facial wash with gel/foam, teeth brushing (of course, with the use of tooth paste), facial cleansing with tonic and application of an anti-aging and moisturizing cream. Shower is probably followed by application of body milk, and then the deodorant and a perfume. How about the usual makeup procedure (applicable only for those who actually use it): primer/tinted moisturizing crème, concealer, eye shadow primer, eye shadow, mascara, blush, lipstick/lip gloss, etc. Even washing your hair isn’t anything less complex – scalp shampoo, shampoo for the hair tips, hair conditioner, hair mask, hair serums, sprayers, gels, hair-spray… Now imagine the sheer quantity of substances that we carry around on our bodies all day.

Are you one of those people who passionately read the labels on the back of every product? Do you use strictly natural cosmetics or do you stick (only) to the “no paraben/paraffin/silicone” rule? Do you know what all the abbreviations and the names of ingredients stand for, or at least what is their actual function within a product? No?  And what do you think, are they harmful for your health? Well…

Let’s explore the list and get some answers…

Formaldehyde is carcinogenic ingredient that is common in hair care products and in nail polishes.

Oil derivatives are a group that consists of many different ingredients, of which maybe the most known is Vaseline which clogs up the skin.

Paraben is used as a preservative and is a common ingredient of shampoos, crèmes, facial masks and hair treatment products. It adversely affects the hormonal system.

SLS is a foaming agent of hair shampoos and body washes. It is very harmful.

Paraffin is found in face and hand crèmes and body milks. It clogs up the pores and causes acne.

Silicone oils can be found in hair care products. Those that are not water soluble are considered toxic because they accumulate and stay on the hair and scalp.

Synthetic fragrances are the components for which it is very important that are not placed at the top of the ingredients list of the product you are considering. They should be located near the very bottom, where low concentration ingredients are listed, because they can cause allergies and hyper pigmentation.

Mineral oils are crude oil derivatives. They can be found in baby oils, moisturizing crèmes, lip balms. They clog the pores and dry the skin.

Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) is a component of nail polishes and is very harmful.

Toluene is used in nail polishes and hair dyes. It acts as a thickening agent and extends the stability of colour, but can be a cause of respiration and immunity problems.

Propylene glycol can be found in deodorants, aftershave lotions, shampoos and crèmes. It irritates the skin and prevents its regeneration.

What do you think, now? Will you check the ingredients label next time you buy or use a product? These are only the most common of ingredients proven to be harmful, but the list probably goes on and on…

It is a fact that we cannot protect ourselves from everything that is harmful; pollution is unfortunately, a part of our lifestyles (food, surroundings, stress). On the other hand, it is not a good idea to go to the extreme and fear everything. What we can do is broaden our knowledge, be more careful about the products we use and thus decrease the probability of problems that we may face in the future.

Toluene: used in nail polishes and hair dyes, acts as a coagulant and extends the expiration date, can be a cause of breathing and immunity problems.

Propylene glycol: can be found in deodorants, after shave lotions, shampoos and creams. Irritates the skin and prevents its regeneration.

What do you think now? Will you look at the ingredients label next time you buy/use a product? These are only the most common ingredients which are proven to be harmful, but the list probably goes on and on…

It is a fact that we cannot protect ourselves from all harmful things, pollution is unfortunately a part of our lives (food, surroundings, stress) , nor it is a good idea to go to extremes and fear everything, but what we can do is broaden our knowledge and be more careful about the products we use and thus decrease the possibility of emerging problems in the future.