7 Harmful Ingredients In Beauty Products You Should Avoid

toxic ingredients in cosmetics

Here are seven ingredients that you will easily find in cosmetics, which you should avoid:

1. Oxybenzone

    Most US sunscreens contain oxybenzone. The EEC called this substance "an interfering hormone" because it has been linked to fertility disorders, obesity, etc. A recent study by FDA took place more than 30 years ago with mixed results. In the European Union, products containing more than 0.5% oxybenzone must be labeled "contains oxybenzone," so you can avoid using it.

    2. Parabens

    Parabens are preservatives that are widely used in cosmetic products for at least 40 years. You can find them in the cosmetic aisle of many drugstores. They are mainly used as a preservative and are carcinogenic. According to some studies, the benefits of using parabens in skin care far outweigh the risk of not using parabens. Namely, parabens eliminate bacteria, mold, and impurities that can be harmful to human health.

    However, many companies, mainly in Europe and Asia, are continually looking for methods to create a cosmetic that will be free from preserving parabens. As a result, they created a natural and organic alternative for these preservatives of cosmetics. Due to the lack of chemical additives in most cases, you should use them up no longer than 6 months after opening.

    3. Formaldehyde

      Formaldehyde is the same substance that morgues use for embalming corpses. Strangely enough, you can also find them in many American cosmetics. Although the US National Toxicology Program describes it as a "carcinogen for humans," it is still successfully used. If you often use hair straightening products or nail care products, watch for formaldehyde.

      While the hair care industry is moving in the right direction, there are still dozens of other products that contain this dangerous chemical. 

      4. Triclosan

        Triclosan is a component of many anti-bacterial cosmetics for hand washing. If you find this relationship on the label of one of the products, remember that it may be a potentially harmful component of your health and may negatively affect your hormonal balance.

        This fact obviously does not mean that you should stop washing your hands. The use of antibacterial products is necessary, especially in the case of hand washing, which is particularly vulnerable to the transfer of bacteria. However, it is worth remembering to use natural cosmetics that contain plant antibacterial ingredients.

        5. Lead

          In February 2012, the FDA published a report that confirmed the presence of trace amounts of lead in about 400 brands of lipsticks in the US. It does not mean, however, that FDA or any other governmental agency did something about it to protect the consumer. Still, many cosmetics contain this extremely harmful element.

          Lead is considered a hazardous element of health and is a by-product of many coloring additives. Many experts say that it can accumulate in the body over a long time and become extremely toxic. To find out if your favorite lipstick contains lead, check it in the Cosmetics Environmental Working Group at

          6. Hydroquinone

            Hydroquinone is used locally to treat discolorations. Many people think that there is no other substance that is as effective. However, it is banned in many countries due to cases of protection. Despite this, still many brands of American cosmetics use this chemical.

            If you decide to use hydroquinone containing cosmetic, follow the instructions of your doctor carefully. It is also always worth reducing and limiting its use.

            7. Phthalates

              Phthalates are substances that cosmetics producers might use as plasticizers in products such as nail polishes. They help to prevent cracking and reduce the stiffness of the hairspray. They can be found in small quantities also in the other cosmetics.

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