Did you know that you may be harboring some serious toxins in your bathroom? Actually, in your medicine cabinets and drawers. In fact, this is where you may find products with chemicals that are dangerous to your health.  Chemicals and toxins in your skincare and personal care products.

Time to Switch to Natural Skincare and Personal Care Products

There is a growing list of chemical-laden, synthetic ingredients used by manufacturers in their cosmetics, skincare and personal care products. This means that those products you and your family use every day can be cocktails of toxins.  These ingredients can lead to serious health issues when used consistently and regularly.

What the experts say

The non-profit US-based Environmental Working Group analyzed over 15,000 cosmetics and personal care products.  They found that many contain harmful ingredients that can undermine our health.  Alarmingly, this list includes many products that we use on our babies and children.

This study found that the average adult uses around nine personal care products each day: for example, toothpaste, deodorant and hand cream. On average, these products contain approximately 126 different chemicals.  Even more so, the same study found that more than 250,000 women use an average of 15 products daily.

Why are they dangerous?

Did you know that 26 seconds is all it takes for the chemicals in your personal care products to enter your bloodstream?

Our skin is our largest organ and the most permeable.  It acts as a barrier to the elements, but also allows the absorption of particular molecules into our bloodstream.  Our skin tells a powerful story – what we ingest and use on our skin will show up in our complexion.

Did you know that daily, regular use of these products can lead to an accumulation of toxins in your body? And, worse, these toxins can take months or years to be fully eliminated by the body.

Dr Mercola, says that “Putting chemicals on your skin or scalp, may actually be worse than eating them. When you eat something, the enzymes in your saliva and stomach help to break it down and flush it out of your body. However, when you put these chemicals on your skin, they are absorbed straight into your bloodstream without filtering of any kind, going directly to your delicate organs.  Once these chemicals find their way into your body, they tend to accumulate over time because you typically lack the necessary enzymes to break them down

These chemicals place a burden on our body’s natural detoxification processes. In addition, they impact our major organs, our skin and our immune system.

The issue of toxic ingredients in cosmetics doesn’t just undermine our personal health.  The impact on our planet can be significant. Toxic plastics and packaging aside, the ingredients eventually end up in our waterways and soils, further impacting on our entire eco-system.

Research findings show that some of these ingredients are known to disrupt our hormonal system. Other chemicals can severely undermine major organs such as kidneys and liver. Many others are also highly allergenic, potentially leading to skin conditions and worse.

Toxic Ingredient List

Have a look now at some of the ingredients list on those bottles in your cabinet.  Is it time to review those toxins in your bathroom?  Do they include some of these?

Here is a list of some of the worst ingredients in those products we use daily:-

Phthalates

Firstly, let’s talk Phthalates. These are primarily found in perfumes and moisturizers to soften the skin. These are now linked to reproductive abnormalities in baby boys, reduced testosterone and sperm quality in men and early puberty in girls.

Formaldehyde releasers

Formaldehyde releasers are preservatives: toxins in your bathroom, often found in shampoo, shower gels, and soaps to prevent the product from growing mould or bacteriaThey work to lengthen the shelf-life of the product. Research shows they are very powerful allergens. Moreover, they are considered carcinogenic.

Parabens

Parabens can include propylparabens, isoproylparabens, butylparabens and isobutylparabens. These are preservatives that are now known to disrupt normal hormone signaling.  In this way, they can lead to issues with fertility.

Triclosan and triclocarban

These are bacteria-killing chemical used in commercial toothpastes (to prevent gingivitis), liquid hand soaps, body washes, clothing, cutting boards and other household goods.  Research shows these can interfere with thyroid signaling and male and female sex hormone signaling.

Retinyl palmitate and retinoic acid

You will find these commonly in anti-aging creams.  Research results suggest that individuals who go out in the sun while wearing retinyl palmitate creams and sunscreens may be at increased risk for skin cancer.

Lead acetate and Coal Tar

Found in many hair dye products and can lead to bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and multiple myeloma.

Sodium Laurel Sulfate & Sodium Laureth Sulfate

These ingredients are surfactants, detergents, and emulsifiers.  You can find these toxins in your bathroom in foaming facial cleansers, make-up foundations, shampoos and body washes. You can also find them in hair dyes, bleaching agents, toothpastes, liquid soaps, bath salts and oils.  In addition, these are found in laundry detergents and industrial cleaners, because of their powerful oil/grease-stripping action.   These are now known to lead to eye irritations, organ toxicity and reproductive issues.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA) & Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHA)

Commonly used in anti-wrinkle treatments and products for acne and blemished skins. These toxins in your bathroom include reactions such as burning, swelling and pain.

Why natural is best

Choosing the best natural skin and body care products will minimize the volume of chemicals and toxins your body is exposed to.

What to look for in natural skin and body care products:-
  1. Look for certified products that have gone through independent checks and balances – many companies can make all sorts of claims about natural.  Certifications from Australian Certified Organic, Demeter, ICEA, BDIH and NASAA are indicators that these companies have been scrutinized.
  2. Avoid products that are tested on animals. The injustice animals are subjected to is criminal in millions of our minds yet, the abuse ensues. Please do your homework and find out if animal testing is taking place and if so, avoid this particular skincare line. This is a simple yet powerful way to be a voice for anti-cruelty and not only be kind to animals but to your own skin.
  3. Natural Ingredients only – ensure that the products you use do not use any of the chemicals listed above and their ingredients are natural – plant-based or other natural ingredients such as clay
  4. Naturally-derived fragrances – fragrances are derived from essential oils and plant extracts
  5. Recyclable packaging and sustainable manufacturing processes – Quality natural products can be undermined if they are stored in packaging that contains chemicals.  Ensure the packaging used is environmentally safe
  6. Simplify – when using quality natural skincare, you don’t need a myriad of products or use a huge amount.

Haberfield Health recommends Argital Natural Skincare and cosmetics.  Available in clinic or at www.argitalaustralia.com.au.

If you are interested in trying these products first hand, our Natural Skin Spa offers a range of facial treatments that are all natural and chemical-free.

References:

  • Dr Mercola – www.drmercola.com
  • Environmental Working Group – https://www.ewg.org/
  • Argital Australia 

 

Rosa Ghidella, Haberfield Health