Categories: Dermatology

Are some makeup ingredients toxic?

According to the latest research, most women use around 12 beauty products daily, from hair shampoo to lipsticks to body and face serum. But, do we know what is inside these makeup products that we put directly on our skin? After seeing a lot of commercials, we get attracted and do bulk purchasing of unnecessary beauty products. But can you tell if these chemical ingredients are safe for your skin and body?

Nowadays, we can check all the ingredients of a product and their effect on our skin on the internet. We can research and know the ingredients in these attractive beauty products. But be aware of any makeup product that doesn’t have clear ingredient lists and doesn’t have the approval of the regulations. The harmful ingredients can be dangerous for our skin and overall health. 

What are the effects of harmful ingredients on our skin and body?

Numerous makeup products contain harmful chemical ingredients, such as paraben, SLS, and many more, which can cause various detrimental effects on our skin and body, such as:

  • Allergies
  • Rashes or hives
  • Skin irritation and itchiness
  • Skin thinning and permanent damage
  • Discoloration
  • Endocrine disruption
  • Increases the risk of various cancer

What ingredients to be aware of when buying makeup products?

Beauty products have become an essential part of our daily routine. Recently, the cosmetic market has grown manifolds, and numerous hair-care, skin-care, and body-care products are available. Some of these products are not genuine and contain harmful chemical ingredients. Therefore, before buying any makeup products, look out for the following potentially harmful chemicals: 

  • Parabens

Most hair and skin care ranges contain parabens. Numerous beauty brands use paraben to increase the shelf life of their products and make them germ-free. According to various research, parabens disrupt the hormonal balance in both men and women, leading to decreased sperm quality, infertility, early puberty, obesity, and an increased risk of cancer.

  • Sulfates

Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) or sodium Laureth sulfate (SLES) act as surfactants that give a leathery consistency to any product. They can irritate the skin and eyes and cause premature hair discoloration. SLS  is harmful to aquatic species.

  • Phthalates

This plasticizing ingredient provides spreadability to the product. Phthalates are commonly present in nail paints, perfumes, and hair sprays and as a softener in shampoos. Phthalates can cause disruption of the endocrine system, such as thyroid hormone instability and disturbance of estrogen and testosterone balance.

  • Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde is a common preservative in various makeup products that halts the growth of bacteria. It is present in nail paints, hair gels, shampoos, deodorants, hair straightening treatments, eyelash glue, lotions, and makeup products. This toxic ingredient causes hair loss, scalp burn, skin irritation, and neurotoxicity. When inhaled, formaldehyde irritates the respiratory tract and can trigger asthma and dizziness.

  • Toluene

This petrochemical solvent is present in hair dyes and nail paints. Toluene can negatively affect our nervous system and immunity and increase the risk of birth-related defects and cancer. Therefore, the doctors suggest avoiding nail paints and hair dyes in expecting mothers.

  • Heavy metals

Lipsticks, eyeliners, whitening toothpaste, and foundation contain Lead and Mercury. We ingest some of the Lead from lipsticks, and absorption of Lead from the skin is dangerous and can cause cognitive and behavior-related problems.

  • Hydroquinone

It is the main ingredient of skin-lightening products, as it reduces the melanin-producing cells (melanocytes). Prolonged use of these products can cause excessive whitening of the affected area and sometimes can cause ochronosis (blue-black or gray-blue pigmentation) as a side effect.

  • Triclosan

It is an antibacterial agent common in soaps, toothpaste, and deodorants. Triclosan causes skin irritation, hormonal imbalance, gut inflammation, and increased cancer risk.

  • Diethanolamine

It acts as a foaming agent and is present in shampoos, face cleansers, body washes, and bubble baths. Diethanolamine is a potent respiratory irritant and cancer-causing agent.

  • Alcohol

Various skin-care products and sanitizers use alcohol as a solvent and antibacterial agent. But, long-term use of alcohol-containing products can lead to dry and flaky skin. With the removal of harmful pathogens, alcohol also destroys good bacteria, which reduces our immunity and makes us more prone to numerous pathogens.

Therefore, before buying any makeup products, cross-check its ingredient carefully and ensure these products are dermatologically-tested.

Narayana Health

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