6 Harmful Ingredients in Personal Care to Avoid

Our skin is our body’s largest organ and surface of defense. This surface is a complex system made up of nerves, and cell layers which each having a role in our health. Although our skin is capable of all these functions, it also needs protection. We have to be cautious with what we put in our skin, because it will go to our body system.

Many of the ingredients in personal care and beauty products contain hazardous material. Just because the products are sold in supermarkets does not necessarily mean they are safe to use. These will go on our skin and into the environment, stay away from these below 5 harmful ingredients.

  1. Parabens                                                  

You can easily find this in makeup, moisturizers, shampoos etc as a preservative. They also used as fragrance although it will not easily spot in the label. Fragrance is considered trade secret, so manufacturers are not required to reveal fragrance chemicals in the list of ingredients. This substance may interfere with hormone function and tend to be associated with breast cancer. Look out for ingredients with “paraben” in their name (methylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben, ethylparaben). It is widely used even though they are known to be toxic.

  1. Synthetic perfume

This perfume is widely used even sometimes in products marketed as “unscented”. It can easily be found in perfume, cologne, deodorant, and in any type of personal care product. The term perfume on a cosmetic ingredients list usually hides a complex mixture of dozens of chemicals. Perfume is a mixture of chemicals that can trigger allergies and asthma. It is often linked to cancer and neurotoxicity. There is also evidence suggesting that exposure to perfume can exacerbate asthma, and perhaps even contribute to its development in children.

  1. PEGs

PEGs stands for polyethylene glycols, it is petroleum-based that are widely used in cosmetics, conditioners, shampoo, etc. It is used in a cosmetic cream base and laxative in pharmacy. Propylene glycol can allow harmful ingredients to be absorbed more readily through the skin. It can also cause allergic reactions. Other ethoxylates may be contaminated with ethylene oxide and 1,4-dioxane. These ingredients usually have chemical names including the letters “eth” (e.g., polyethylene glycol).

  1. Triclosan

It can easily be found in “anti-bacterial” products such as hand sanitizers and soap. It acts as preservative and anti-bacterial agent. It may disrupt endocrine hormone function and very harmful to wildlife. There are many products that have triclosan in one’s household. It is being used in laundry detergent, antiseptics, garbage bags, toys, etc. This compound doesn’t easily degrade and can build up in the environment after it has been rinsed down the shower drain. In the environment, triclosan also reacts to dioxins, which bioaccumulate and are toxic.

  1. Aluminum 

Aluminum is an ingredient used in deodorant and mostly antiperspirant. It is often linked to Alzheimer’s and brain disorders and is a possible risk factor in breast cancer. Some research suggests that aluminum-based compounds, which are applied frequently on the skin near the breast, may be absorbed by the skin and cause hormonal effects.

  1. Oxybenzone

It is most commonly found in spray on sunscreens and know to be a major hormone disruption. It is not recommended for anyone especially children.

There is a very nice comprehensive easy-to-understand explanation in this website .


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