Is Your Beauty Routine Filled with Chemicals?

When thinking about living green, you may not think about stuff like cosmetics. I know I’ve never thought to check the label of my deodorant, toothpaste, soap, and makeup, but after reading about some of the things that are in there, I have decided to start reading closely. I read a statistic online that said that we could be exposing ourselves to 200 or more toxins when just getting ready for the day.

What are some hidden toxins you want to avoid in your cosmetic routine? If you suffer from dandruff, you may want to read the label of your shampoo. The human carcinogen coal tar is found as an active ingredient in many dandruff shampoos, but it may also be in your anti-itch cream. Check your toothpaste and mouthwash to see if it has FD&C Blue 1. That is a coal tar based dye you may want to avoid as well.

I used to have a friend that added formaldehyde to her nail polish, thinking it made her nails stronger. While it may have, formaldehyde can have adverse health affects, so check your nail polish, hair dye, eyelash adhesive, and even baby bath soap for diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl, or quaternium compounds. All of these are break down products of formaldehyde.

Mercury, which can be found in the preservative thimerosol, is contained in some mascara and has been found to cause brain damage. P-phenylenediamine, also known as 1,4-Benzenediamine; p-Phenyldiamine and 4-Phenylenediamine, may be in your hair dye and it has been known to cause lung irritation.

The one that shocked me is hydroquinone. This is used in cosmetics that promise to lighten the skin and some moisturizers. There is some evidence that this can cause cancer in lab animals, but I believe this is the ingredient my doctor told me to get to help lighten some dark spots on my face.

After reading about the different things put in our beauty products and the effect they might have on our health, hopefully you too will take a second to look at the labels.

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Libby Pelham

About Libby Pelham

I have always loved to write and gives me the opportunity to share my passion for writing with others. I work full-time as a web developer at UTHSC and most of my other time is spent with my son (born 2004). I love everything pop culture, but also enjoy writing about green living (it has opened my eyes to many things!) and health (got to worry about that as you get older!).