An Introduction to Chemicals in Cosmetics

Understand How Conventional Makeup is Toxic

Have you ever thought about what was in your cosmetic's products? Do you find it hard to read all the ingredients in your eye shadow and coverup? Unfortunately many cosmetics and beauty products are filled with harmful chemicals. One philosophy … is not to put anything on the face that you wouldn’t eat. If you wouldn’t put it on your plate, then don’t put it on your face! This is critical because the face absorbs material just as if you had eaten it. So, if you would not put a spoon in your moisturizer jar and eat it, or use it as an ingredient in a dish you would serve to your family, then you should not put it on your face. Chemicals that you put in your mouth are absorbed into your blood and reach your skin where they are deposited. When you put these chemicals on your skin, they are absorbed by your skin cells into the blood, and therefore into the body. Furthermore, some chemicals can enter skin cells immediately, creating visible deposits (age spots/blemishes), and can worsen the skin conditions you are trying to improve. And again, makeup can damage your skin to the point that you are embarrassed to show your face in public without applying makeup. It’s a vicious cycle—but it can be broken.

Mother Earth magazine reports: The Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that 80% of the products they tested were contaminated with one or more substances linked to cancer and other health concerns. A recent EWG study of 15,000 cosmetics found that 22% of them were contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency classifies as a probable human carcinogen, and a known animal carcinogen. The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics says many of these chemicals are easily absorbed into the body because they’re applied directly to your skin. And while the chemicals in any single product may not be a concern, repeated exposure from a variety of sources can be detrimental to your health. EWG has a searchable database called Skin Deep, to help consumers choose better, safer personal care products [including natural and organic items]. 

Dr. Daniels never wears any makeup. For very special occasions, Dr. Ray will wear lip gloss and eye liner made from edible products. If you choose to wear makeup sparingly, buy your makeup from local health food stores. Be sure to request an ingredient list first to find healthy products with edible ingredients, and check the database mentioned above.


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