Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Chemicals in Cosmetics - Scary Shit

Happy Earth Day! In light of this special day, I'd like to share some info about the chemicals and toxins that are found in every-day beauty products. From lotions to makeup to hair dye, beauty products are loaded with dangerous shit. An example: Coal tar is a component of some shampoos that treat dandruff, and coal tar dyes are used in some hair colouring products (and they're usually masked with fancy names such as Pigment Orange 5).

Major gaps in public health laws allow cosmetics companies to use almost any ingredient they choose — even lead, mercury, and placenta. Ingredients in any kind of product — from sunscreen and mascara to deodorant and baby shampoo — are sold to consumers with no restrictions and no requirement for safety testing. This means it's up to the consumers to educate themselves!

So, how do you begin educating yourself?
Well, start by checking out the Cosmetic Safety Database. You can enter the name of any product you use, and check it's toxin level. I was surprised to learn that a lot of products that I use from the Body Shop (which I thought would be pretty safe) had some rather high levels of toxins.

Also, check out this what not to buy list, which includes products made by Avon, Almay, Revlon and Sally Hansen, to name a few.

Do your research and know what you're putting on your skin. After all, you only get one body so take care of it well.


  1. Hi YWSS! For some more resources and information about the cosmetics industry, you might dig this resource site:


  2. Thanks for the suggestion Lilith Attack. ;-)