Did you know that your skin absorbs up to 60% of whatever you put on it? And the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) lists many ingredients found in skincare products as toxic? Though the names can be hard to pronounce, it's worth it to become familiar with some of these unwanted skincare additives that have been tested to be precursors to cancer, infertility, birth defects and skin allergies. Why this is allowed is an article for another day, and perhaps worth a letter to your congressperson. In the meantime, jot down these skincare no-no ingredients to make sure you're keep your body healthy and happy!
Parabens have become the most recent hot-button bad ingredient. As a result, you'll see a lot of products that are listed as paraben free. Stick to those because plenty of products still carry them. Used as a preservative, studies have shown these guys can cause hormonal imbalances in women as well as early puberty and infertility in men. Parabens have also been found inside female breast cancer tumors!
If this sounds familiar, it might be because you've seen it listed in many acne-fighting creams. It may clear blemishes but unfortunately the side effects aren't worth it! It causes DNA damage in both humans and animals, and it's considered a "mutagen." That's an agent that promotes the growth of tumors.
This is a well known synthetic anti-bacterial ingredient, so be sure to check all products that have anti-bacterial on the label. What does it do? Well, it's officially registered with the EPA as a pesticide and causes harm to humans and the environment. It's one of those chemicals that has a high potential to be cancer-causing. Tufts University has said Triclosan is capable of creating "super bugs" that we can't control. Scary stuff. Check out hand soap and toothpaste labels carefully.
Also called SD-40, this stuff is in a wide range of products from hair and skincare ingredients to fragrances. It's even in shellac and antifreeze. This ultra drying agent will remove the natural immune barrier of your skin, making it more vulnerable to things like mold, bacteria and viruses. It can also cause premature aging. It can accelerate the absorption of other harmful skin agents, too. It's fatal if one ounce or less is ingested. That should tell you to stay far, far away from it.
MEA (Monoethanolamine), DEA (diethanolamine) and TEA (triethanolamine)
All of these ingredients are banned in Europe as known carcinogens (cancer causers). Not so, in the United States. You'll find these three lovelies in shampoos, shaving creams and bubble baths. These are so common that speculations predict the average American can be exposed to them up to 20 times per day. Ouch.
If you've got a bottle of baby oil in your home, you've also got a bottle of mineral oil, which is 100% what baby oil is made from. This is a petroleum byproduct that coats skin like plastic and clogs pores. It also slows down cell development and can speed up skin aging. What should you use instead? Vegetable oils (such as jojoba and olive) are much healthier.