We use so many skincare products every day that we think are safe. But the truth is that most of them are not! Manufacturers don’t have to tell us that. What you apply on your skin can go into your body and affect your health either positively or negatively. If you know the facts, you can choose your own products. Labels on cosmetics and body care products are a tough code to crack. Who gets that? I know I didn’t until someone shared this information with me long ago.
Here are some of the terrible “Touch-Me-not” ingredients that you must avoid:
Parabens is one of the most common ingredients in skin and beauty care products. This ingredient is known to disrupt the endocrine system; thereby increasing the risk of breast cancer in women and lowering the sperm count (warn your partners!). Although skin care companies have been arguing that they use it in minimal amounts and are not concentrated enough to interfere with the hormones, it’s still better to avoid products containing Parabens.
This hard-to-pronounce ingredient is present in almost all the cosmetics – and has been found to act as a hormone disruptor that is linked to liver/kidney/lung damage, cancer and reproductive defects. The tricky part is that the ingredient is usually not listed on the labels of the products.
But here’s the hint! Phthalates are found in anything that lists “fragrance” as an ingredient. So stick to only those products that use essential oils for fragrance purposes.
3. Mineral Oil:
Mineral oils seem beneficial to the skin, but they are derived from petroleum. Hence, repeated exposure to non-purified versions can cause skin cancer and may lead to acne breakouts and other related problems. It is usually found in body lotions, makeup removers, and other baby products like baby oil and butt cream.
As per the Environmental Protection Agency, triclosan is a pesticide that contains antibacterial properties. This ingredient is popular in most of the antibacterial cleansers. It has been proven that triclosan works as both a thyroid and hormone disruptor. Moreover, it is not good for the environment. So, it’s time to put your germaphobe at ease and switch on to water and other natural hand soap.
Being a popular ingredient in bleaches and other hair products, why is it banned in federal government buildings? Sounds strange, right?
That’s because resorcinol is a known skin irritant and a common cause of dye allergy. Hope you don’t wish to have any such allergy in your hair, or anywhere for that matter!
6. Sodium Lauryl (ether) Sulphate (SLS, SLES):
These surfactants are present in cleaning products such as soaps and shampoos to create foam in them. However, they get absorbed in the skin and cause irritation in the skin and eyes.
They’ve been found to affect the development of young eyes when exposed to children, and even damage their skin by separating its various layers. Animals exposed to SLS were found to experience depression, skin and eye irritation, and problems with breathing as well.
Remember your school’s biology lab? Well, formaldehyde is the same compound used to preserve frogs for dissection. It is used commonly in many cosmetics to prevent bacterial growth. But, it is found to be harmful to the immunity system and can cause skin irritation and other allergic reactions. Formaldehyde is present in products such as body wash, shampoos, conditioners and nail polishes.
Skin is the body’s largest organ and absorbs whatever you put onto it. Commercial products with harmful ingredients can constipate your skin, making germs more likely to get in and toxins less likely to get out of your body. The bottom line is – before using any product, always go through the ingredients and know what’s present in it.