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Toxic chemicals in skin care products

Stay Away From These Dangerous Toxic Chemicals In Skin Care Products

July 7, 2014

After covering some of the biggest myths about cosmetic treatments last week, this week we will be using the best of science and nature to get optimal results in your beauty treatments.

The interesting thing to note on this topic, is that whilst cosmetic advancements have brought us so far ahead in the anti-ageing market, sadly, this sometimes comes at the expense of your safety. And we’re not just talking about scientifically-based ingredients – sometimes not even ‘natural’ means safe!

So, today we are talking about some chemicals in skin care products that you should avoid; some of them are natural ingredients, while others are simply… toxic chemicals.

6 Toxic Chemicals that you should avoid in your skin care products:

1. Parabens
These ingredients are known to have hormone-disrupting effects known as endocrine dysfunction.

They are normally used to prevent the growth of microbes in cosmetic products. The problem with these is that they are absorbed into the body’s blood vessels (via skin) and can affect the body’s vital organs.

Parabens were discovered in breast tumors and increase the levels of toxicity in the reproductive system, they are linked to cancer, skin irritation, neurotoxicity and immunotoxicity.

Parabens are found in shampoos, body lotions, eye makeup, deodorants, scrubs, etc. In the US they are found in urine samples of every person, regardless of age, sex, cultural backgrounds or geographic background (this is just how widespread parabens are!).

2. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

One of the most common “nasty” chemicals in skin care products and definitely the most toxic ingredient on this list.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is an ingredient used to clean garage floors and car engines. At the same time, it is an active element of makeup products, toothpaste, hair conditioner and shampoos.

The worst part is that if this substance comes in contact with other chemicals, it forms a deadly class of carcinogen known as nitrosamines. Exposure to sodium lauryl sulphate causes diarrhea, but it can also lead to more problematic conditions such as eye damage and depression…

3. Propylene Glycol

This ingredient is usually found in deodorants and, believe it or not, most deodorants have a higher concentration of Propylene Glycol than allowed. PG, as it is also know, is an active ingredient in antifreeze, therefore it is used in other cosmetic products such as makeup or toothpaste.

What are the risks of PG? Direct contact with this ingredient can lead to brain abnormalities, but this is not all. Liver and kidney problems can also occur as a result of direct interaction with propylene glycol.

Did you know that workers who interact with PG are required by the EPA to wear gloves and protective equipment? Ironically, consumers are allowed to wash their teeth with it…

4. Synthetic fragrances

There are several synthetic fragrances (or musks) that are harmful for one’s skin, but these chemicals are in skin care products worldwide. These fragrances are found in almost all skin care products, plus detergents and dish washing solutions.

Synthetic musks can disrupt hormones and can be deposited in the body’s fat tissue. This INCLUDES women’s breasts and even breast milk!

5. Ureas

These ingredients are preservatives. They act by releasing formaldehyde, and are thus the main cause of dermatitis. Ureas are found in a wide range of products such as make-up, hair care, skin care:

  • facial cleansers
  • moisturisers
  • shampoos, conditioners
  • acne treatments
  • hair foams and mousses
  • nail polishes and cuticle treatments
  • after shave lotions
  • mascara, lip balm, foundations, eye creams
  • antiperspirants and deodorants

The worst thing about urea is that it is a well-known carcinogen, but unfortunately there are very few (and pretty expensive) products on the market that are created without this ingredient… Sometimes you can’t avoid chemicals in skin care products unless you are willing to pay a peppered price – but at least you know you’re taking care of your health.

6. Chemical sunscreens
Chemicals are in skin care products for sun protection as well. The problem with chemical sunscreens is that they have active ingredient toxicity and contain chemical filters. While each of these sunscreens contain an element for protecting the skin against UV rays, each of them also pose hazards to human health.

Chemical sunscreens usually contain zinc oxide or titanium oxide (in some cases both), however the most problematic ingredient is oxybenzone. Oxybenzone is one of those toxic chemicals that can cause skin rashes, irritations, allergic skin reactions and can disrupt hormone activity. It was proven that it can result in lower birthweight in daughters and presents an increased risk of endometriosis.

5 natural ingredients that are possibly harmful and pose serious health hazards:

As mentioned at the beginning of this article, it’s not just the man-made ingredients we need to be careful of. Sometimes a product labelled ‘all natural ingredients’ can cause health risks. Here are five to watch out for:

  • Gaultheria procumbens
  • Pinus sylvestris
  • Betula alba
  • Cinnamomum zeylanicum
  • Juniperus oxycedrus

These products are the 5 natural plants that are not recommended for cosmetic use according to a study performed by the Council of Europe’s Committee of Experts on Cosmetic Products. So you can find chemicals in skin care products even if they are labeled as “natural” – keep an eye for the plants these products are made from!

Whatever skin care or body care products you are using, keep in mind that:

  • approximately 60% of everything you put on your skin gets carried into your bloodstream
  • almost 95% of the skin care products that contain widespread chemical fragrances are synthetic compounds
  • in some cases 100% of a fragrance can be synthetic (this goes beyond perfumes and includes shampoos, creams, body lotions, scrubs, etc.)

** Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia is proud to only use cosmetic products and treatments that are safe and non-toxic. **

Now is your turn…

Are you using skin care products that are really safe? Do these products specifically state that they do not contain the any harmful ingredients?

Do you have friends who you think could benefit from this article? Use the social sharing buttons below to spread the news about chemicals in skin care products: not all that’s natural is safe!

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