Ingredients To Avoid In Your Skincare Products

What do we know about the human skin?

Human skin, in anatomy, the covering, or, of the body's surface that both provides protection and receives sensory stimuli from the external. The skin consists of three layers of tissue: the, an outermost layer that contains the primary protective structure, the stratum corneum; the dermis, a fibrous layer that supports and strengthens the epidermis; and the subcutis, a subcutaneous layer of fat beneath the dermis that supplies nutrients to the other two layers and that cushions and insulates the body (1*).

The skin is the largest and one of the most important organs on our body. It performs many different functions to support the body including protecting other organs like bones, muscles, ligaments, nerves, and more. It only makes sense to be extremely careful of what we are putting on our skin.

The skin is a strong and flexible organ with barrier properties essential for maintaining homeostasis and thereby human life. Characterizing this barrier is the ability to prevent some chemicals from crossing the barrier while allowing others, including medicinal products, to pass at varying rates (2*,3*)

Now that we know more about human skin, let's find out how it can be protected.

Here's Why:

Up to 60% of what we put on our skin gets absorbed. That means that the products we put onto our bodies affect our health and overall well being, negative or positive. The FDA does not regulate skin care, almost any ingredient can be incorporated into the formula. The FDA continues to find cosmetics contaminated with bacteria, including body wash, face powders, shadows, and lotions, or containing banned colors chemicals, including shampoos, soaps, cleaners, and temporary tattoos.

Under the current law, the FDA has little authority to review chemicals in cosmetics and other personal care products. Personal care products companies do not have to register with the FDA, provide the FDA with ingredient statements, adopt Good Manufacturing Practices, or GMPs, report adverse events to the FDA, or provide the FDA with access to safety records.

The FDA does not have the power to suspend registration or order recalls when products pose a risk of serious adverse health consequences or death. By contrast, manufacturers of food, drugs, and medical devices must register with the FDA, maintain and give the FDA access to records and report adverse events. If food, drugs, or devices are unsafe, the FDA can suspend production and product licenses. If unsafe food or devices reach the market, the FDA can order a recall and take legal action against drugmakers that do not recall their products, some of them putting your health at risk (4*).

Ingredients found in skincare products (face washes, lotions, sunscreen, etc) have now been linked to health issues such as allergies, eczema, cancer, hormonal disruption, and reproductive problems. So yes! your skincare products can make you really sick!

Here re Some Of The Ingredients To Avoid In Your Skincare:

Since 2009, 595 cosmetics manufacturers have reported using 88 chemicals, in more than 73,000 products, that have been linked to cancer, birth defects, or reproductive harm.

1. Aluminum Chlorohydrate

Use:

- Aluminum-based compounds are the active ingredients in antiperspirants. They block the sweat glands to keep sweat from getting to the skin's surface.

Potential Health Concern:

- Neurotoxicity, Carcinogen, Endocrine Disruption, and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Antiperspirant

 

2. BHA (Butylated Hydroxyanisole) and BHT (Butylated Hydroxytoluene)

Use:

- BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) are closely related synthetic antioxidants used as preservatives. lipsticks and moisturizers, among other cosmetics. They are also widely used as food preservatives.

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Endocrine Disruption, and Organ Toxicity/Irritation.

Where you can find it:

- Lipsticks and moisturizers, among other cosmetics. They are also widely used as food preservatives.

 

3. Butoxyethanol

Use:

- Is used primarily to dissolve other substances and to decrease the viscosity of liquid hair dyes and colors (16*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Reproductive Harm and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Is primarily used in paints and coatings, and also as an ingredient in some household cleaning products, cosmetics, hair products, and personal care products.

 

4. Chemical UV Blocks

Use:

- Chemical sunscreens tend to use a combination of ingredients to protect against the full spectrum of UV rays, as individually they all filter different ranges of the spectrum.

Potential Health Concern:

- DNA/Cell Damage and Endocrine Disruption.

Where you can find it:

- Face sunscreen, body Sunscreen, and cosmetic products.

 

5. Coal Tar

Use:

- This medication is used on the skin to treat the itching, scaling, and flaking due to skin conditions such as psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis. Coal tar belongs to a class of drugs known as keratoplasty. It works by causing the skin to shed dead cells from its top layer and slow down the growth of skin cells (5*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen

Where you can find it:

- Hair products and cosmetics.

 

6. 1,4-dioxane

Use:

- Is a trace contaminant of some chemicals used in cosmetics, detergents, and shampoos (6*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Organ Toxicity/Irritation, and Reproductive Harm.

Where you can find it:

- Products that sud.

 

7. Ethylenediaminetetraacetic (EDTA)

Use:

- Disodium EDTA and the related ingredients bind to metal ions which inactivates them. The binding of metal ions helps prevent the deterioration of cosmetics and personal care products. It also helps to maintain clarity, protect fragrance compounds, and prevent rancidity. (7*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Moisturizers, cleansers, hair color, soap, body wash, foundation, eye makeup, and most beauty products.

 

8. Ethanolamines

Use:

- Like MEA work as cleansing agents, or surfactants, in personal care products and cosmetics. In these types of products, ethanolamines help remove dirt and oil on skin by dissolving grease and blending other important ingredients. (8*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Allergen, Organ Toxicity/Irritation, Endocrine Disruption, Carcinogen, and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- Moisturizers, cleansers, hair color, soap, body wash, foundation, eye makeup.

 

9. Formaldehyde

Use:

- These chemicals, is used to prevent microbes from growing in water-based products, can be absorbed through the skin, and have been linked to cancer and allergic skin reactions. (9*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Neurotoxicity, Reproductive Harm, Allergen and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Bath products like shampoo, body wash, cleansers, nail polish, and synthetic eyelash glues.

 

10. Hydroquinone

Use:

- Is a topical skin-bleaching agent used in the cosmetic treatment of hyperpigmented skin conditions. The effect of skin lightening caused by hydroquinone is reversible when exposed to sunlight and therefore requires regular use until desired results are achieved(10*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Skin whitening products (cleansers, moisturizers).

 

11. Mercury and mercury compounds

Use:

- Is used in cosmetics as a skin lightening agent and preservative. Cosmetics with Mercury are often marketed as skin lightening creams and anti-aging treatments that remove age spots, freckles, blemishes, and wrinkles. Adolescents sometimes use these products as acne treatments (17*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Neurotoxicity, Reproductive Harm and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Eye makeup.

 

12. Methyl cellosolve

Use:

- Is used as a solvent for many different purposes such as varnishes, fragrance viscosity control, dyes, and resins. It is also used as an additive in airplane deicing solutions (12*).

Potential Health Concern:

- DNA/Cell Damage, Neurotoxicity, Reproductive Harm and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Anti-aging skincare products.

 

13. Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone

Use:

- Methylisothiazolinone (MIT) and Methylchloroisothiazolinone (CMIT) are widely used preservatives found in liquid cosmetic and personal care products. Both chemicals inhibit bacterial growth in cosmetic products on their own, but they are most commonly used as a mixture of products (13*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Organ Toxicity/Irritation, Allergen, and Neurotoxicity

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

14. Mineral Oil

Use:

- Is a common ingredient in baby lotions, cold creams, ointments, and cosmetics. It is a lightweight inexpensive oil that is odorless and tasteless. It can be used on eyelashes to prevent brittleness and breaking and, in cold cream, is also used to remove creme make-up and temporary tattoos (14*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Organ Toxicity/Irritation, Allergen, and Carcinogen

Where you can find it:

- All types of face products, body products, cosmetic products, and baby products.

 

15. Nanoparticles

Use:

- Insoluble nanoparticles in cosmetic products are essentially used as UV-filters or preservatives. nanoparticles alter properties of cosmetic products including color, transparency, solubility, and chemical reactivity(15*).

Potential Health Concern:

- DNA/Cell Damage, Organ Toxicity/Irritation, and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- Anti-aging products and treatments, Sunscreens.

 

16. Parabens

Use:

- Parabens are preservatives used in a wide variety of personal care products and foods to prevent the growth of microbes.

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Endocrine Disruption, Reproductive Harm, Allergen and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

17. Phenoxyethanol

Use:

- Phenoxyethanol has been used safely since the 1950s as a preservative in cosmetics and personal care products. It is highly effective in preventing the growth of fungi, bacteria, and yeast that could cause products to spoil, just like food. The use of preservatives enhances products' shelf life and safety (18*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

18. Phthalates

Use:

- Used as a plasticizer in products such as nail polishes to reduce cracking by making them less brittle; dimethyl phthalate (DMP), used in hair sprays to help avoid stiffness by allowing them to form a flexible film on the hair; and diethyl phthalate (DEP), used as a solvent and fixative in fragrances. DEP can also function as an alcohol denaturant, rendering alcoholic products unfit for oral consumption (19*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Endocrine Disruption and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- Synthetic fragrance, hairspray.

 

19. Polyethylene glycol (PEG compounds)

Use:

- Attracts water functions as a humectant and is used in moisturizers to enhance the appearance of skin by reducing flaking and restoring suppleness. Other reported uses include skin-conditioning, agent viscosity-decreasing agent, solvent, and fragrance ingredient.

Potential Health Concern:

- Endocrine Disruption and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

20. Propanol

Use:

- Isopropyl Alcohol also called isopropanol or 2-propanol, is most commonly known as rubbing alcohol. Isopropyl Alcohol is widely used in cosmetics and personal care products, such as aftershave lotions, bath products, eye, and other makeup products, as well as nail, hair, and skin care products. In products designed for consumers, Isopropyl Alcohol functions as an antifoaming agent, cosmetic astringent, solvent, and viscosity decreasing agent (20*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Organ Toxicity/Irritation and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

21. Resorcinol

Use:

- Resorcinol and 2-Methylresorcinol help impart color to hair. The exact color obtained will depend on the other ingredients that are used in the preparation and the starting color of the hair. These ingredients may also function as antioxidants(21*).

Scientific Facts:

Potential Health Concern:

- Organ Toxicity/Irritation, Endocrine Disruption

Where you can find it:

- Haircare, Hair Dye, and styling products.

 

22. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate

Use:

- Both SLS and SLES are very effective ingredients used in cleansing products and as creams and lotions. In this function, surfactants wet body surfaces, emulsify or solubilize oils, and suspend soil. These ingredients contribute foaming and lathering properties to cleansing products and bubble baths (22*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Allergen and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Shampoo, cleanser, soap, exfoliators, body wash, and bubble bath.

 

23. Synthetic Fragrance

Use:

- Fragrance or Parfum

Potential Health Concern:

- Allergen, Carcinogen, Organ Toxicity/Irritation and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- All types of hair products, face products, body products, cosmetic products.

 

24. Toluene

Use:

- Toluene is used as a solvent to dissolve other substances, such as resins and plasticizers, used in the formulation of nail products.

Potential Health Concern:

- Carcinogen, Neurotoxicity, Organ Toxicity/Irritation and Reproductive Harm

Where you can find it:

- Hair dye and nail polish.

 

25. Triclosan

Use:

- As an antibacterial ingredient, triclosan combats gram-negative bacteria, as well as the odor-causing gram-positive bacteria. As a preservative, triclosan is extremely effective in slowing or halting bacterial growth, thereby controlling the growth of odor-causing bacteria and preventing bacterial degradation; this property helps extend the shelf life of everyday products (23*).

Potential Health Concern:

- Environmental Harm, Endocrine Disruption and Organ Toxicity/Irritation

Where you can find it:

- Antibacterial hand and body soap/cleanser, Hand sanitizer and Antiperspirant

 

Taking all of these into consideration and analyzing what we just read the next time you are shopping for skincare products, it is really important to read the ingredient lists thoroughly and not skip over words, especially the ones you can't pronounce or don't understand. Your skincare products should be made with pure, organic ingredients and should not contain any chemicals that could affect your health.