In the spirit of spooky season, we want to help you steer clear of ingredients that might harm your health or your “look” this season.
Certain ingredients are used in beauty care because they are cheap and the rules in America are a lot less strict than in other countries. Beauty products are not required to prove their safety before they hit the market unfortunately.
To help keep you one step ahead, we’ve compiled a list of the six scariest ingredients to avoid in your skincare.
What they are: A family of preservatives that are used for their antibacterial and antifungal abilities often added to skincare.
Why they’re SCARY: Are known to react with UV radiation, unleashing a flood of free radicals into your skin and potentially increasing the risk of certain cancers. Plus they can act as an estrogen mimicker, which is connected to hormone imbalance and even more cancer!
What they are: A group of chemicals that are generally used as preservatives, but can also be used as a strengtheners, color-savers fragrance-prolongers and making other products more flexible, like hairspray.
Why they’re SCARY: Phthalates can cause birth defects, endocrine disruption, cancer, they can negatively impact thyroid function and the heart. And the list goes on. There are other options, just avoid phthalates!!
What they are: Sulfates are the most commonly used detergents in the industry. They are what make your toothpaste, body wash and shampoo foam up. If it lathers, it’s chock full of nasty chemicals.
Certain forms of sulfates like sodium lauryl sulfate, can dehydrate skin if not properly rinsed off and reduce ceramide levels in skin. Curly and wavy haired girls are also not the best match for sulfates in hair care as it can damage their hair.
Why they’re SCARY: Sulfates derived from petroleum are the worst as they are not only carcinogenic but also skin and lung irritants. Sulfates in general are skin and lung irritants and because of this, animal testing is used to check how irritating. If the sulfate is contaminated with 1.4-dioxane, it can cause cancer.
- Artificial Colors
What they are: A group of synthetic chemicals that are used to create unnatural coloring in skin and beauty care to attract buyers. Generally derived from coal tar, (a known carcinogen) these colors can contain heavy metal salts like lead, and even arsenic.
Why it’s SCARY: Linked to everything from thyroid, bladder and testicular cancer to DNA damage, hyperactivity, zinc depletion, and eczema. Artificial colors can leave a toxic residue on the skin increasing sensitivity and irritation. Tumors have been linked to areas where product with synthetic colors have been applied repeatedly.
- Artificial Fragrances
What they are: Could literally be anything as this is a catch-all term for anything they want to use. Most are a giant mix of chemicals like styrene or our #2 culprit, phthalates.
Why they’re SCARY: Since artificial fragrance can be a chemical soup made of almost anything, the side effects can vary from skin and lung irritation all the way to cancer and organ damage, depending on the composition.
What it is: A byproduct of petroleum refining, also known as petroleum jelly, petrolatum, or mineral oil. Used as a topical ointment, added to skin products as it creates a natural barrier that keeps moisture in.
Why it’s SCARY: Petroleum based products have been linked to multiple cancers, hormone-disruption, accelerated aging and autoimmune problems. Due to the barrier petroleum creates it can also trap bacteria against the skin as well, contributing to breakouts and/or fungal skin infections.
So now that you are armed with a “what to avoid” cheat sheet, choosing great skincare should be a lot less scary. If you want to avoid any confusion, you can just head over to our website and choose any product on the menu, as we do not use ANY of these ingredients and we will NEVER test on animals. Have a spooktacular season and enjoy your non-scary skincare!