Originally published in May-June 2004 icon
How Many Of These 12 Do You Use?
We all want to look great and smell good, but at what cost to our health? Not enough research is being done into the carcinogenic ingredients in the cosmetics and toiletries we use every day. But there are safe alternatives, so spread the word.
Red = carcinogenic, neurotoxic and causes mutation of DNA
Green = probably carcinogenic, or often contaminated with carcinogens, or terms carcinogenic nitrosamimes when mixed with other ingredients.
Blue = skin irritant (note some red and green ones are also irritants)
Saccharin, fluoride artificial colours and flavours, propylene glycol (cosmetic form of mineral oil used in industrial antifreeze), PEG ingredients, sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), sodium lauryl ether sulphate (SLES), triclosan (absorption through the skin can lead to liver damage).
Remember the quickest way into the bloodstream is through the lining of the mouth!
2:Deodorants & Antiperspriants
Formaldehyde (has caused lung cancer in rats and can damage DNA. It is banned in Japan and Sweden), aluminium (links to cancer and Alzheimer´s disease), propylene glycol, fragrance. alcohol, triclosan, parabens.
3:Shampoo & Conditioner
Formaldehyde (quaternium). PEG. fragrance (95% of the chemicals in perfume are synthetic compounds derived from petroleum - 26 of which are on an EU hit list), artificial colours, lanolin oil, propylene glycol. BHT. alcohol. isopropanol, paraffin (mineral oil). TEA, MEA, SLS, SLES (these can all lead to potentially carcinogenic cocktails of nitrites and dioxins forming by reading with other ingredients), cocamidopropyl betaine.
Propylene glycol. PEG ingredients. DEA, paraffin, "eth" ingredients,TEA, MEA, SLS. SLES, Benzophenone 3, parabens, glycerin.
Mineral oil. petrolatum. fragrance, lanolin. Butylated hydroxya nisole(BHA). titanium dioxide, padimate-O, polyethylene, polyvinyl pyrro Ii done (PVP) (reports suggest that PVP may cause tumours and that inhaling its particles may be harmful), oxybenzone.
Shower Gel / Liquid Soaps
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate(SLS), Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate(SLES), proplylene glycol. PEG ingredients. quaternium. alcohol, artificial colours, fragrance, DEA, TEA. MEA, triclosan, parabens, glycerin.
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Talc, titanium dioxide, quaternium (formaldehyde). artificial colours, PEG ingredients, propylene glycol (cosmetic form of mineral oil), silica (may be contaminated with cystalline quartz which is carcinogenic). fragrance, diazolidinyl urea, silica ,parabens, glycerin. Foundation is the most dangerous thing in your make-up bag.
Fragrance, alcohol, methylene chloride, toluene, ether.
Phenylenediamine (ppd can cause blindness on eye contact), coal tars, hydroxyanisole (affects the female reproductive system). paraffinum Iiquidum (mineral oil), fragrance, quaternium, PEG ingredients. "eth" ingredients, glycerin. Various medical reports have linked prolonged use of hair dyes to bladder cancer, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin´s lymphoma, ovarian cancer and leukaemia.
Alcohol (mouthwashes with an alcohol content of more than 2S% have been linked to mouth, tongue and throat cancers), fluoride, PEG ingredients, artificial colours.
Formaldehyde. toluene (methyl benzene. phenyl methane a neurotoxin which can damage the liver, disrupt the endocrine system and cause asthma. Breathing high levels during pregnancy can result in children with birth defects). isopropanol acetone, acetonitrile (forms cyanide when swallowed), ethyl & methyl methacrylate.
12:Talc & Baby Powder
Talc (linked to the increase in ovarian cancer. It blocks the pores when used in make-up and is dangerous when inhaled), fragrance. propylene glycol.
Phthalates do not appear on ingredients lists, but are toxic chemicals resulting from inhalation and skin exposure to volatile parent ingredients used extensively as solvents and plasticisers fl perfumes, shampoos, hairsprays and nail polishes. Animal studies have shown they can damage the liver, kidneys, lungs and reproductive system.
For information about toxin-free products follow this link.