Cosmetic Toxins

Smart Shopper’s Guide to Cosmetic Toxins
Protect yourself and your loved ones!
Use this guide to avoid some of the most common household and cosmetic toxins.

Used as: preservatives in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries and as a food additive. 

The risks: Parabens are hormone disrupters and have been shown to be a reproductive toxin in animal studies. Parabens have been detected in breast cancer tumours. May cause contact dermatitis. 

Found in: Deodorants, cosmetics, shampoos, moisturisers, shaving gels, make-up and toothpaste, cleaning products, pharmaceuticals. 

Avoid: Methyl, Ethyl, Propyl & Butyl Paraben, Japanese Honeysuckle Extract (Plantservative).

Used as: cosmetic biocides; denaturants; and preservatives. 

The risks: Formaldehyde is classified as a Category 2 carcinogen. Low level exposure causes irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, and can cause skin and lung allergies. Central nervous system depressant. 

Found in: Detergents, cosmetics, shampoos, bubble baths, hair conditioners, athlete’s foot treatments, skin disinfectants, mouthwashes. 

Avoid: Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate (Suttocide), Imidazolidinyl urea (Germall 115), Diazolidinyl urea, (Germall II), Quaternium-15, DMDM Hydantoin (Glydant), 2-bromo-2nitropropane-1,3diol (Bronopol).

The risks: Accumulates in our bodies, has been linked to hormone disruption, and the emergence of bacteria resistant to antibiotics and antibacterial products. Along with its negative health effects, triclosan also impacts the environment, ending up in lakes, rivers and other water sources, where it is toxic to aquatic life. 

Found in: Antibacterial soaps, deodorants, toothpastes, cosmetics, fabrics, plastics. 

Avoid: Triclosan (Microban, Irgasan DP-300, Lexol 300, Ster-Zac, Cloxifenolum, Biofresh).

1,4-dioxane is a by-product of a chemical process of ethoxylation, in which ethylene oxide, a known breast carcinogen, is added to other chemicals to make them less harsh. Readily penetrates the skin. Is considered a probable human carcinogen by the U.S. EPA. Suspected by the state of California to cause cancer or birth defects. Suspected kidney toxicant, neurotoxicant and
respiratory toxicant.

Found in: Shampoos, conditioners, skin care, personal care, laundry detergents, household cleaners.

Avoid: Polyethylene glycol or ‘PEG’, polyoxyethylene, any ingredient with ‘eth’ in the name such as sodium laureth sulphate, ceteareth or oleth.

Nitrosamines have been identified as one of the most po- tent classes of carcinogens, having caused cancer in more than 40 different animal species as well as in humans. NDELA (nitrosodiethanolamine) is the specific nitrosamine “to which human exposure is the greatest,” since it occurs in cosmetics and is “absorbed readily through the skin (Carcinogenesis 1985, National
Cancer Institute). Nitrosamines are created when nitrosating agents are combined with amines.

Found in: Cosmetics, skin care, personal care, hair care.

Avoid: MEA (Monoethanolamine), DEA (Diethanolamine),
TEA (Triethanolamine) e.g. Cocamide MEA,
DEA Oleth-3 Phosphate, TEA Lauryl Sulfate.

Fragrance ingredient; plasticizer; solvent, masking agent; and for perfuming. The risks: ‘Fragrance’ can contain up to 400 separate ingredients, including toluene and phthalates. Phthalates are endocrine disrupters that can harm the developing foetus and the male testes. Long-term exposure causes liver and kidney damage. High level exposure causes irritation of the eyes, nose and throat, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and headache.
The US Environmental Protection Agency found that 100% of perfumes contain toluene, which can cause liver, kidney and brain damage as well as damage to a developing foetus. Synthetic fragrances are known to trigger asthma attacks. Symptoms reported to the FDA from fragrance exposure have included headaches, dizziness, rashes, skin discolouration, violent coughing and vomiting, and allergic skin irritation. Fragrance is a common skin irritant.

Found in: Air fresheners, colognes, perfumes, cosmetics, hairspray, nail polish, paints, plastics, household perfume products, floor polish, window cleaning products, adhesives, toys, shower curtains.

Avoid: Fragrance (Parfum), Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Diethyl Phthalate (DEP).

For more information, or to order your very own wallet size "Smart Shoppers Guide to Cosmetic Toxins", please contact 'Your Representative'.

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