Chemical Nasties

Chemical Nasties in Products

What are Parabens?

Parabens are a group of chemicals widely used as preservatives in cosmetics. Look out for these on your skin care products under the names – Methyparaben, Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Ilsoparaben.

It is a low cost synthetic preservative for which many large cosmetic brands have tried to fund study to prove that prolonged usage safe but all studies have failed!

Parabens are used in over the counter personal products as a preservative to extend shelf life of the product. These chemicals can be found in face & body moisturisers, body washes, cleaners, shampoos, deodorants etc

Tests have found that parabens displayed estrogen activity in several tests. It is a medical fact that estrogen stimulates breast cancer and anything absorbed through the skin may be as high as 10 times the concentration of an oral dose!

Your skin is your largest living organ so any products continually rubbed into the skin i.e face creams. body lotions etc that contain chemicals will go straight into the blood stream!!

Other harmful chemicals

Apart from Parabens there are also other harmful chemicals that you need to avoid!!

Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulphate (SLS or SLES)

This is another chemical regularly added to skin care products as well as concrete floor washers and engine degreasers!!!

In the same way that SLS dissolves the grease on car engines it also dissolves the oils on your skin which can cause a drying effect as well as the chemical entering your blood stream!

According to the Journal of the American College of Toxicology, vol 2 no.7 1983, SLS is a mutagen. In sufficient amounts, it is capable of changing the information in genetic material found in cells.It has been used in studies to induce mutations in bacteria. It denatures protein, impairs proper structural formation of young eyes, creating permanent damage. SLS can damage the immune system. It can also cause separation of skin layers and cause inflammation of the skin if it interacts with other nitrogen bearing products.

It is a requirement that label ingredients are listed in the highest order of concentration – i,e the highest level of ingredients are listed first (read your labels). If you take a look at most high street cleansers or shampoo you will find that SLS is 2nd or 3rd on the list!!

Diazolidinyl Urea or Lodopropynyl Butylcarbamate

This is chemically related to imidazolidinyl urea and is a formaldehyde releaser used as a preservative. It was International Agency for Research on Cancer listed this as its highest toxic class, IARC1 (known human carcinogen). Formaldehyde is classified as a probably human carcinogen by the US Environmental Protection Agency, which provides sufficient evidence that formaldehyde causes nasopharayngeal cancer in humans by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

The label on your skin care product may not list “formaldehyde”. The following ingredients break down and release formaldehyde so look for these – diazolidinyl area (or 3-dioldiazolidinyl urea) 2-brono-2-nitropropane-1 (or bronopol) DMDM hydantoin.

It has been banned in Europe, after studies concluded that effects can result in: carcinogen, causes allergic reactions and contact dermatitis, headaches, irrates mucous membranes;damaging to eyes; linked to joint and chest pain; depression; fatigue; dizziness and immune dysfunction.

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