Conventional “beauty” products are filled with chemicals, fake fragrances (aka more chemicals), dyes, and harmful agents such as aluminum, which can increase your risk for cancer. Not to mention nearly every single one of these products has been tested on animals. These products have been marketed not only to make you think that you need them, but also to make you think that they’re beneficial for you.
Chemicals in Your Makeup
Let’s begin with just a few ingredients in popular cosmetics:
Parabens. Parabens are preservatives that are used in cosmetics as well as pharmaceutical drugs, both of which test on animals (unless otherwise noted on the label for cosmetics).
So what’s wrong with parabens? Parabens can cause a variety of health problems, from allergic reactions to skin irritations to breast cancer . They're extremely controversial, yet somehow still deemed safe for cosmetic use.
Sulfates. Oh, sulfates. Well known for being in anything that foams. Yes, all sorts of soaps and shampoos. However, it’s even in toothpaste and shaving cream. You’ll commonly recognize sulfate in popular compounds such as sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate.
These artificial compounds are usually harsh on your skin and hair, stripping it of vital natural oils and allowing your skin and hair to be even more susceptible to toxins (which doesn’t make a good combination when you’re washing your armpits with this stuff and then putting nasty aluminum deodorant on—yikes!)
Sulfates, like parabens, can cause skin irritation, infertility, and even cancer. Of course, using this chemical in small amounts won’t kill you immediately—but over time, you could be setting yourself up for some serious health problems.
EDTA. Oh, yum, a preservative made from formaldehyde! Pass it here, I definitely want that going in my liver. NOT. Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen, people!
EDTA stands for ethylene diamine triacetic acid. Whew. This stuff is in everything. It’s in soap, shampoos, hair dyes, many different lotions and facial creams, face wash, even some of your vitamins and processed food have this in there!
Propylene glycol. You gotta love this stuff. It’s used for embalming dead humans, antifreeze, and brake fluid. Oh yeah, it’s also in a ton of your beauty products.
Fragrance—A Deadly Term for Thousands of Chemicals
The term fragrance is what we call an umbrella term that encompasses nearly 4,000 harmful chemicals, some of which are known to be carcinogenic. Breathing in that favorite fragrance of yours—or even having it go on your skin—is dangerous. Just a few of the health problems that these fragrance chemicals can cause are:
If you’re buying perfume the company that made that perfume is not required to disclose the ingredients to you. If you’re buying other beauty products, the word “fragrance” or “parfum” will simply be listed on the label. You’ll never know which fragrance chemicals your product has in there, but you do know that many of those chemicals are carcinogens.
What to Do?
I could go on and on, but it’s making me a little nauseous writing about all these chemicals that we expose ourselves to (not to mention the planet) every day of our lives. So let’s think some brighter thoughts and talk about what we can do to sidestep these chemicals, stop supporting animal testing, and take our health back!
You’ve got some options here, babe!
Option #1: Buy Natural Products
There are so many different natural health products out there that can effectively replace that animal-tested, chemical-filled crap you were using from the supermarket. But, you still need to check the label, as the government doesn’t regulate the uses of the word “organic” or “natural” when it comes to beauty products. The ingredients should be easy to pronounce and there should be a “no animal testing” label on there. After all, why would they need to test on animals if they just used natural ingredients?
Option #2: Make Your Own
Making your own products is safer, more fun, and you’ll feel proud when people comment on your gorgeous lip color of your lemon body butter. For lip tints, try mica, a natural mineral. I made my own tinted lip balm with it a couple weeks ago—it’s gorgeous! For body butter, simply mix up some coconut oil, shea butter, vitamin E, and essential oils.
For body butter, simply mix up some coconut oil, shea butter, vitamin E, and essential oils. The same with deodorant. In fact, you’ll find that many of your beauty products can be made with a combination of those ingredients.
Perfumes? Use essential oils mixed into dark blue glass bottles. You can customize your own scent and it’s way cheaper than those carcinogens you pay for at Macy’s. Just Google recipes. It’s so easy!
Mascara? Try henna or coconut oil.
I didn’t wake up one day to find that all my beauty products were toxic and tested on animals. It happened over time. I was shocked to find that I was putting carcinogens on my body. But I learned that we don’t have to buy those products or sabotage our health with them. Enjoy total wellness with natural beauty products!