Nowadays in some form or fashion there is always an article or news release about another product causing cancer or linked to some harmful health issue. While I am not the type of person to take everything I read as gospel, I do consider the source and do my own research on the product at hand.
I do love skin care products, and it is disheartening to hear about all the cancer-causing ingredients. I tell myself that these cancer-causing ingredients are in such minute amounts that they somehow will not hurt me. However, it is disheartening that so many young girls are exposed to these ingredients and will be using these skin care products for a lifetime, and that being the case should we be concerned?
Most over-the-counter skin care products contain ingredients such as silicone, dimethicone and/or parabens-carcenogens. Research has shown that parabens have been found in the biopsied breast tissue.
Below are some other ingredients in skin care products and there suspected and/or known health issue:
Diethanolamine (DEA) - Commonly found in shampoos, soaps and body wash. DEA is suspected to be a carcinogen and repeated use has been linked to increased cases of kidney and liver cancer. Alias: Look for names like Cocamide DEA or MEA, Lauramide DEA.
Formaldehyde - Found in many brands of skin, hair and body care products, antiperspirants and nail polish. This ingredient is known to be a carcinogen. Besides increasing your risks of getting cancer, exposure may cause joint pain, allergies, depression, headaches, chest pains, ear infections, chronic fatigue, dizziness, loss of sleep and more. Alias: Look for names like DMDM hydantoin, Imidazolidinyl urea and quaternium-15
Parabens - A preservative and found in shampoos, conditioners, skin creams and deodorants. An endocrine-disruptors, parabens mimic female hormones and have been found in breast cancer tumor samples. Alias: Look for the word "paraben" or any other word with the suffix "-paraben", including methylparaben, ethylparaben, isobutylparaben, propylparaben, etc.
Petrolatum - Commonly found in lip products. Known to interfere with the skin's natural cell development and can cause chapping, irritation and premature aging. This substance is derived from a non-renewable crude oil, which people aren't even supposed to breathe. Mineral oil is also petroleum-based.
Phenyledediamine (PPD) - Found in permanent hair dyes - especially darker shades. A suspected Carcinogen and frequent use has been linked to bladder cancer. Alias: Also called P-diaminobenzene.
Phthalates - Found in deodorants, shampoos, sunscreens, skin care body care and baby products. Known as a hormone disrupting chemical and many of the compounds that fall into the "fragrance" category are suspected carcinogens and toxins. Reported symptoms have included headaches, dizziness, rashes, skin discoloration, violent coughing and vomiting, allergic skin irritation and more. Alias: Often listed as an ingredient called "fragrance."
Sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate (SLS) (SLES) - Found in detergents, car wash soaps, garage floor cleaners and engine degreasers. These ingredients are also in cosmetics, toothpaste, hair conditioner and most products that bubble and foam. Known as a skin irritant and suspected carcinogen. This is linked to both malformation in children's eyes and to immune system damage.
Talc - Commonly found in blush, baby powder, garden pesticides, antacids and more. Crime: Suspected carcinogen. Talc may contain asbestos-like fibers and has been linked to ovarian and lung cancers. Alias: Magnesium Silicate Hydroxide, talcum powder.
Toluene - Commonly found in nail polish. Long-term exposure can cause damage to the nervous system, liver and kidneys. Alias: methylbenzene or phenylmethane
Triclosan - Found in everything from dishwashing detergent, trash bags, and footwear to antibacterial liquid hand soaps, toothpastes, deodorants, face and body washes, acne treatments and more. A suspected hormone disruptor and carcinogen. It has been associated with thyroid dysfunction and can convert into carcinogenic dioxins when exposed to sunlight in water.
Above are just some of the ingredients that have suspicious and/or unsafe ingredients. If you would like to know the safety rating of your skin care products, visit the Environmental Working Group's cosmetic data base. There is also a site about teens and their use of cosmetics.
Given what I know now, will I change my skin care products? Well, I do find myself reading the ingredients and I try to find products that are made from more natural ingredients. Furthermore, if I had a young daughter wearing makeup all the time I would definitely review what she is wearing!
Do you think skin care product manufacturers should put warning labels on their products? Will you change you skin care products based on the research above? I would love to hear from you!
For wonderful homemade skin care recipes, including body scrubs, toners, facial peels, clay masks, etc., visit Complete Skin Care Therapy
Check out my other posts here on Shine:
Fight off Mosquitoes - easy natural homemade recipe
Earth Day is April 22 - Read The History of Earth Day
How to Select the Right Under-eye Concealer