It’s truly shocking the amount of chemicals found in personal care products these days. The average woman uses 12 products a day and the average man uses 6 products. 80% of the chemicals in those formulations have NEVER been tested for safety. We find refuge in words like Natural, Herbal, Pure, and even Organic, but unless it is certified Organic, all these words do NOT mean anything at all. The FDA does not have a legal definition for the word Natural, so anything goes in shampoos, lotions, toothpaste, etc. The solution? You must be savvier than the industry so you are no longer fooled by their claims. Learn the widely used TOXIC ingredients, so when you spot them on the label, you can leave the product on the shelf.
In ALL personal products, avoid Parabens: Methylparabens ethylparaben, butylparaben, methylparaben and propylparaben. Used as preservatives, these chemicals disrupt hormonal function. Look for products that say “Paraben Free”.
Shampoo Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) are used to create the foaming effect in shampoos but are skin irritants and cannot be metabolized by the liver. Check for SLS free or leave it on the shelf!
Cocamide diethanolamine (DEA) It’s the sneakiest of chemicals because it’s derived from coconut oil and some brands pass it as “Natural”. Also a foaming agent, that when combined with synthetic DEA is a known carcinogen that has been banned in California. Better Option: John Master's Shampoo
Hand Soaps & Hand Sanitizers Triclosan is supposed to kill bacteria but it’s so dangerous that the FDA is having it removed from the shelves. It is an endocrine disruptor and helps to create resistance to bacteria. All you need to do is to thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Better Option: Seventh Generation Hand Soap and Clean Well Hand Sanitizer.
Deodorants & Anti-Perspirants Aluminum’s function is to block the sweat ducts from releasing sweat. Aluminum is potentially harmful to breast tissues and has been associated to breast cancer. Better Option: Noursih Deodorant
Nail Polish Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde,Toluene, Formaldehyde Resin, and Camphor.Effects in order: Birth defects, carcinogen, skin irritant, allergen, irritant. This is why “3 free” or “5 Free” nail polishes are becoming more popular. Who wants cancer with their mani? Better Option: Zoya Nail Polish, Vapour Organics
Body Lotions Petrochemicals like Mineral Oil, Petroleum Jelly, Propylene Gycol are petroleum-based ingredients with the intention to moisturize but they clog the skin and dry it even more. Besides, these are use in gasoline, paint, and antifreeze. Do you want that on your skin? Better Option: Hugo Naturals
So to recap: Avoid SLS, SLES, DEA, Triclosan, Aluminum, Mineral Oil – Make a memo in your phone for the next time you are shopping for personal care products. Add to that: Buy only “3 free” or “5 free” Nail Polish. There’s your cheat sheet.