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Cosmetic Ingredients To Avoid

Cosmetic Ingredients To Avoid

A List of Cosmetic Ingredients To Try to Avoid When Possible.

It is very beneficial to understand the ingredients that go into your makeup and bath and body products.  Sadly, there are a lot of toxic ingredients out there that are used in massive quantities in making makeup and skincare products.  An educated consumer is able to choose products that will be the most beneficial, and the least harmful, to their body.


I understand that sometimes it is impossible to avoid bad ingredients, and sometimes such bad ingredients may be absolutely necessary to creating a function of a product.  However, if you can't avoid a bad ingredient, you want to at least make sure it's listed low down on the ingredient list.  Companies have to list their ingredients in order of weight - so the first ingredient listed is used the most in your product, whereas ingredients that are listed further down toward the end of the list have a smaller percentage in the product.  

Here is a list of some ingredients you should try to avoid when possible.

Diazolidinyl Urea - When this product breaks down it release the known carcinogen formaldehyde which breaks down the skin barrier and gets right into the bloodstream.  Unbelievably, I have even seen plain formaldehyde listed in many commonly used fake eyelash adhesive glues. 

Fragrance - This can be more than 200 different types of chemicals and companies do not have to disclose what makes up their "secret" fragrance.  Fragrances has been linked to anything and everything from headaches, allergies, cancer, and more.  I look for higher quality products that derive their fragrances from essential oils - many use lavender or lemon essential oils to create fragrance naturally.   See my post My Top 5 Favorite Essential Oils & How I Use Them if you are interested in learning more about the amazing world of essential oils and their unlimited number of uses.


Methylparaben -Avoid this ingredient and anything else ending in "paraben" if you can.  These preservatives act like estrogens in the body and have been linked to breast cancer.  

Mineral Oil - This is actually a byproduct of petroleum when it is distilled into gasoline. The claim is that the mineral oil used in cosmetic products is highly refined, compared to the mineral oil used in cars.  My concern would be that not every cosmetics company out there would be using the higher refined version of mineral oil, and I just chose not to take that chance.  You can find lots of articles about the debated bad health effects on the web.  Here are just two of them:  Why is Mineral Oil Bad for The skin & 3 Key Reasons to Avoid Mineral Oil. Most baby oils are made of pure mineral oil.  I have also seen mineral oil in lots of cleansing oil products.  Cleansing oils are used to remove, or basically dissolve, makeup.  If you want to remove your eye makeup gently with an oil, pure jojoba or olive oil work great. 
Propylene Glycol - Sadly this ingredient is literally in just about everything - from soaps, body lotions, deodorants, shampoos and conditioners, pretty much you name it.  If you can avoid it,  great job!!  It is a penetration enhancer and has been shown to be an irritant, cause cancer in lab tests, and also possibly disrupt the endocrine system. 

Talc - This is another ingredient that is in just about everything, especially cosmetic loose powders used to bake, and in eyeshadows.  There is some controversy as to whether talc contains harmful contaminants such as asbestos, a known carcinogen.  Past studies have raised questions about whether the use of talc is linked to ovarian cancer.  Both talc and asbestos are naturally occurring silicate minerals that are mined from the earth.  Unfortunately these minerals are also in close proximity to each other.  Since talc is very hard to avoid, you want to look for products that at least list this ingredient further down on the list, meaning they use less of it than if it were listed up at the beginning of the list. 

Tetrasodium EDTA - This is a preservative that is made from the known carcinogen formaldehyde.  This breaks down the skin's protective barrier, getting right into the blood.  Recently there was a lot of news about this one and many hand soap companies have since been trying to remove this product from their products as consumers are getting more and more education about what they are buying.  

In summary, I just cannot stress enough how important it is to read your ingredients.  If you know of an ingredient you would like me to list here, please comment down below.  If you found this list helpful, please share this post and spread the love.

You can find more of my health and skincare related articles under my pages: Health and Skincare, both of which can be found at the top of my site.  You can find all my makeup related articles under my page, Makeup, which is also at the top of my website.

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Just a makeup mama who loves to play, and slay, with her makeup.  Learn my beauty secrets and explore my world at: The Makeup Equation

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