Nasty ingredients commonly found in beauty products
Check out this list of nasties to avoid in your hair and skin care products – read the ingredients list to make sure your favourite products don’t contain these ingredients as they are not any good for your health or the environment.
Parabens: Methylparaben, Butylparaben and Propylparaben are some of the most common Parabens in cosmetics and anything else with ‘paraben’ in the name. A chemical preservative found in underarm deodorants, moisturises, hair care and other cosmetics that has been shown to mimic the action of the female hormone estrogen and may drive the growth of breast tumours. A study published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology has found that breast tumours commonly contain Parabens. There is also some evidence that Parabens may potentiate the damaging effects of UV radiation.
DEA (diethanolamine), MEA (Monoethanolamine) & TEA (triethanolamine): Hormone-disrupting chemicals that can form cancer-causing nitrates and nitrosamines. These chemicals are already restricted in Europe due to known carcinogenic effects. In the United States however, they are still used despite the fact that Americans may be exposed to them 10-20 times per day with products such as shampoos, shaving creams and bubble baths. Repeated skin applications of DEA-based detergents resulted in major increase in incidence of liver and kidney cancer.
Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives: these are called DMDM Hydantoin, Diaxolidinyl urea, Imidazolidinyl, methenamine or Quarternium-15. These are commonly found in hair products and skin moisturisers. Formaldehyde is classified as a probable human carcinogen by the EPA, which provides sufficient evidence that formaldehyde causes nasopharyngeal cancer in humans by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. These act as a carcinogen, causes allergic reactions and contact dermatitis; headaches; irritates mucous membranes; eye damage; linked to joint and chest pain; depression; headaches; fatigue; dizziness and immune dysfunction.
FD&C Colour Pigments: Synthetic colours made from coal tar, containing heavy metal salts that deposit toxins into the skin, causing skin sensitivity and irritation. Absorption of certain colours can cause depletion of oxygen in the body and death. Animal studies have shown almost all of them to be carcinogenic. These colours are used in mainstream Blonde shampoo’s.
Fragrances: Most synthetic fragrances can indicate the presence of up to four thousand separate ingredients, many toxic or carcinogenic. Symptoms reported to the FDA include headaches, dizziness, allergic rashes, skin discoloration, violent coughing and vomiting, and skin irritation. Clinical observation proves fragrances can affect the central nervous system, causing depression, hyperactivity, irritability, inability to cope, and other behavioural changes.
Polyethylene Glycol (PEG’s): Potentially carcinogenic petroleum derived ingredient that can alter and reduce the skin’s natural moisture factor. This could increase the appearance of aging and leave you more vulnerable to bacteria. Used in cleansers to dissolve oil and grease. It adjusts the melting point and thickens products. Also used in caustic spray-on oven cleaners and hair care products.
Propylene Glycol (PG): Gaseous hydrocarbons which in a liquid state act as a “surfactant”. They easily penetrate the skin and can weaken protein and cellular structure. Commonly used to make extracts from herbs. PG is strong enough to remove barnacles from boats! The EPA considers PG so toxic that it requires workers to wear protective gloves, clothing and goggles and to dispose of any PG solutions by burying them in the ground. Because PG penetrates the skin so quickly, the EPA warns against skin contact to prevent consequences such as brain, liver, and kidney abnormalities. But there isn’t even a warning label on products such as stick deodorants, where the concentration is greater than in most industrial applications.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) & Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES): Detergents and surfactants that pose serious health threats. Used in car washes, garage floor cleaners and engine degreasers – and in 90% of personal-care products that foam. Animals exposed to SLS experience eye damage, depression, laboured breathing, diarrhea, severe skin irritation, and even death. Young eyes may not develop properly if exposed to SLS because proteins are dissolved. SLS may also damage the skins immune system by causing layers to separate and inflame. When combined with other chemicals, SLS can be transformed into nitrosamines, a potent class of carcinogens. Your body may retain the SLS for up to five days, during which it may enter and maintain residual levels in the heart, liver, the lungs, and the brain.
Alcohol, Isopropyl (SD-40): A very drying and irritating solvent and dehydrator that strips your skin’s moisture and natural immune barrier, making you more vulnerable to bacteria, molds and viruses. It is made from propylene, a petroleum derivative and is found in many skin and hair products, fragrance, antibacterial hand washes and antifreeze. It can act as a “carrier” accelerating the penetration of other harmful chemicals into your skin. It may promote brown spots and premature aging of skin. It is also known to cause headaches, dizziness, mental depression, nausea, vomiting, narcosis, anesthesia, and coma.
Triclosan: Triclosan is used mainly in commercial antibacterial liquid soaps, cleansers, deodorants, detergents, toothpastes, mouthwashes, antiperspirants, cleansers and hand sanitisers as a preservative and an anti-bacterial agent. The EPA investigated Triclosan and classified it as a pesticide and it is not considered a cosmetic ingredient and it has given high scores as a risk to both human health and the environment. Triclosan can pass through skin and is suspected of interfering with hormone function in humans.
Toluene: Made from petroleum or coal tar, and found in most synthetic fragrances, nail polish and hair dye, this is used to improve adhesion and add gloss. Chronic exposure linked to anemia, lowered blood cell count, liver or kidney damage, and may affect a developing fetus.
A lot of the above ingredients are very commonly found in beauty and hair care products and unfortunately not many people are aware of this. Next time you pick up a beauty product, be sure to turn it over and read the ingredients, you will be surprised!
EverEscents are proud not to use any of the above nasties in our products. EverEscents products are also proudly Australian owned & made (even the bottles & labels), Vegan friendly, Cruelty Free & environmentally responsible.
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