Beauty Products: The Ugly Side

Asides that some ladies look like expensive clowns and smell like bootycall for bees, they also add harmful substances to their skin by the constant usage of the products they use in order to enhance their beauty.

U.S. researchers report that one in eight of the 82,000 ingredients used in personal care products are industrial chemicals, including carcinogens, pesticides, reproductive toxins, and hormone disruptors. Many products include plasticizers (chemicals that keep concrete soft), degreasers (used to get grime off auto parts), and surfactants (they reduce surface tension in water, like in paint and inks). Imagine what that does to your skin.
From great skin to luxurious hair, the beauty products you’re using may contain very harmful chemicals that could ruin your skin and ultimately, your life.
I did some research on your behalf and got some names for you to take note of.
Do take the time to read through labels before you purchase a beauty product. Thank me later.

DEA – Affects Fetus Development
DEA (Diethanolamine), is a substance used to produce ingredients that add foaminess and creaminess to shampoos, body washes, bubble baths and waterless hand cleaners. A DEA offshoot – Cocamide DEA – is an allergen that can be irritating to the skin and associated with contact dermatitis.

The biggest DEA-related concern, according to dermatologists, is its potential harm to fetuses. One animal study done on mice showed that the ingredient could damage the developing brain and memory by blocking the absorption of the B vitamin Choline during infant development. The best substitute is coconut oil.

Parabens – may cause breast cancer
Parabens are a preservative in personal-care products. They prevent the growth of microbial organisms and is found in shampoos, moisturizers, shaving gels, makeup and many other items.

According to dermatologists, The biggest concern is that parabens might mimic the hormone estrogen which has been tied to certain types of breast cancers. One study in 2004 found them in human breast tumors. Researchers aren’t sure how the parabens got into the tumors or whether they caused the tumors to appear. Try using citrus seed extract or antioxidants like vitamin E.

Triclosan – May cause hormone disruption and antibiotic resistance
Triclosan is an antibacterial and antifungal ingredient found in many antibacterial soaps, gels, toothpastes and some cosmetics. Because of increased interest in keeping germ-free, especially during the cold and flu season, many consumers believe a product’s use of triclosan is an added benefit.

A study on a popular toothpaste containing triclosan was effective in preventing gingivitis, but animal studies have tied triclosan to hormone disruption. Dermatologists say the ingredient may even contribute to making bacteria antibiotic-resistant. The FDA is reviewing the safety and effectiveness of this ingredient. Dermatologists say just use regular soap and water.

Parfum/Fragrance – can cause allergic reactions/Migraines/Asthma
In addition to making products smell desirable, fragrance can even mask or conceal the odor of certain unpleasant-smelling ingredients.
Added fragrance can cause allergic reactions, migraines and asthma symptoms in chemically sensitive people. Over longer periods of time, research has shown some added fragrances may be hormone disruptors because the body cannot eliminate them.

Nothing beats good body hygiene. Wash sweaty areas thoroughly so that you don’t need perfumed products to make you smell better. Go fragrance free.

Mercury – can cause kidney, vision, hearing, nervous & immune system damage
Mercury, a highly toxic substance, used to be a staple in many mascaras serving as both a preservative and a way to kill mites that could burrow in women’s eyelashes. Now it’s also used as an ingredient in skin lightening products sold over seas and online – ones that promise to eradicate age spots or freckles.
Mercury can damage the kidneys, vision and hearing, and cause harm to the nervous and immune system over time.

Hydroquinone is a compound used in a variety of skin products, usually targeted at customers that are looking to reduce the appearance of dark spots, freckles, acne scars and other problem spots on the body.
n some countries, hydroquinone is already illegal. Hydroquinone works to reduce the amount of melanin your skin produces, which in turn makes your skin lighter in appearance however, doing this makes your skin more susceptible to UVA and UVB rays that can lead to dangerous sunburns, and over a prolonged period of time, an increased risk of certain types of skin cancer.
Most manufacturers tell users to limit their sun exposure when using hydroquinone treatments, but many people use them for a considerable amount of time, and few people are willing to avoid the outdoors completely.

Used mainly in moisturizers and makeup as preservatives. Suspected endocrine disruptors and may cause cancer (BHA). Harmful to fish and other wildlife.

Coal Tar Dyes: p-phenylenediamine and colours listed as “CI” followed by a five digit number
In addition to coal tar dyes, natural and inorganic pigments used in cosmetics are also assigned Colour Index numbers (in the 75000 and 77000 series, respectively).
Look for p-phenylenediamine hair dyes and in other products colours listed as “CI” followed by five digits.1 The U.S. colour name may also be listed (e.g. “FD&C Blue No. 1” or “Blue 1”). Potential to cause cancer and may be contaminated with heavy metals toxic to the brain.

DEA-related ingredients
Used in creamy and foaming products, such as moisturizers and shampoos. Can react to form nitrosamines, which may cause cancer. Harmful to fish and other wildlife. Look also for related chemicals MEA and TEA.

Dibutyl Phthalate
Used as a plasticizer in some nail care products. Suspected endocrine disrupter and reproductive toxicant. Harmful to fish and other wildlife.

Formaldehyde – Releasing preservatives
Look for DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine and quarternium-15. Used in a variety of cosmetics. Slowly release small amounts of formaldehyde, which causes cancer.

PEG Compounds
Used in many cosmetic cream bases. Can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which may cause cancer. Also for related chemical propylene glycol and other ingredients with the letters “eth” (e.g., polyethylene glycol).

Used in some hair products for shine and as a moisture barrier in some lip balms, lip sticks and moisturizers. A petroleum product that can be contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which may cause cancer.

Look for ingredients ending in “-siloxane” or “-methicone.” Used in a variety of cosmetics to soften, smooth and moisten. Suspected endocrine disrupter and reproductive toxicant (cyclotetrasiloxane). Harmful to fish and other wildlife.

Sodium Laureth Sulphate
Used in foaming cosmetics, such as shampoos, cleansers and bubble bath. Can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which may cause cancer. Look also for related chemical sodium lauryl sulfate and other ingredients with the letters “eth” (e.g., sodium laureth sulphate).

So, my dear lady, when next you have to go shopping please do try to read the label. The warning signs are boldly written on each product pack.
I understand that you want or need to impress your man and/or his friends but be careful. Plus when you try to outdo your own friends, do not let it turn to a case of ‘who can gather the most skin irritations and cancers”. Please o.


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