How to Choose Safe Cosmetics

Women consider several factors when looking for makeup and one of these is selecting cosmetics that are compatible for your skin type and personal preference or style. Part of a good checklist, however, is product safety. So aside from selecting makeup based on budget and quality, it is also important to choose safe cosmetics. For a guide, check out the following tips.

Shopping for Safe Cosmetics

  • For anti-aging products, check on the label and avoid those with beta hydroxy acid and glycolic acid. Several studies have linked alpha hydroxy acid on UV-caused skin damage.
  • For hair dye, you should stay away from permanent and dark hair dyes because many of them may contain coal tar components, such as diaminobenzene and aminophenol, which are linked to cancer.
  • For skin lighteners, you may want to avoid those containing hydroquinone, which is associated with ochronosis. It may also lead to blue and black lesions, which are often irreversible on exposed skin. Then, there are illegal skin lighteners that contain mercury that poisons both children and adults, especially during pregnancy. Stay away from these products.
  • Avoid buying cosmetics without proper ingredient label.
  • Read cosmetic reviews on products you want to buy and check for the characteristics of the makeup that you are looking to buy.
  • Research on the regulated and unregulated claims of the products you are buying. Some claims include,
  • Tested by dermatologists
  • For sensitive skin
  • No-tear formula
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Natural
  • Organic
  • Avoid petroleum-derived ingredients. Check the label. There are many mainstream cosmetics containing petroleum derivatives like those from crude oil, and some of them are,
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Polysorbates
  • Polyethylene Glycol
  • Mineral oil
  • What are the preservatives in the cosmetics? To preserve shelf life, many mainstream manufacturers add preservatives in their cosmetics. Some of the red flags to check on the label include,
  • Parabens (propylparaben, butylparaben, methylparaben) that are linked to breast cancer and skin cancer and that mimic natural hormones, resulting to a disrupted  endocrine system
  • Benzyl Alcohol that is often linked to contact allergy and used in many natural and mainstream cosmetics
  • Phenoxyethano that is commonly used in many organic and natural products and that are known in depressing the nervous system
  • Skip beauty products that have synthetic fragrances, which are derived from coal tar and some of these also include volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are linked to birth defects, cancer and nervous system diseases.

Summing up,

Pick products with simpler ingredients’ list, and as much as possible, avoid those that contain synthetic fragrances.  Do a research on the products that you are buying and read on the ingredients’ list. Remember, there are also no legal standards on the labels, including organic, natural or pure. Therefore, you may want to consider checking beyond marketing claims and reading labels mindfully. Beware of natural and organic claims you find on the label. You should check and understand specific information about ingredients.


Elodie Miller

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