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The No Nasties List

The skin is the largest organ in the body and what you put on it really does matter, and affects your health more than you realise. There are no regulations or government approval needed when it comes to beauty and skincare products. Which basically means companies can pretty much put whatever they want into their products. The regulations process involves approving colour additives and ingredients that could be considered as "over-the-counter" drugs.

Don't get me wrong they cannot be sold if they are not deemed as "safe", have proper labelling and have some restrictions on testing the products on animals. Nevertheless, many of the approved ingredients used are irritating to the skin, carcinogenic and are endocrine disruptors.

With that said, not all chemicals are bad, but many of them can be harmful, so here is a list of the top chemicals that get a bad wrap and why. However bare in mind that there are many independent companies that are trying to make safe, non-toxic products where they can but it can be very costly - hence the higher prices, so if you want something safe, as pure as possible and sustainable you need to be willing to pay the price. Do you research on the brands you are investing in, make sure they are doing what they are preaching and that their products contain the ingredients they market (towards the top of the ingredients list).

*Ingredients listed on the back of the product start with the highest concentrations (at the top of the list) followed by the lowest amounts (at the bottom).

* Also sustainable does not always mean green - palm oil is green and natural but Not sustainable

Paraben's - Widely used to prevent bacteria growth, however they mimic oestrogen and have been linked to increased risk of breast cancer. Paraben's can be found in face wash, body wash, shampoos, makeup and deodorant's.

Synthetic Colours - Are usually sourced from coal tar and petroleum! These are carcinogens and have been banned by the european union, however they can still end up in your skincare.

Fragrance - This is a broad term for aroma and scents, but the formula used can be packed with chemicals that can cause allergies (and allergic reactions), respiratory irritation, dermatitis and headaches. Found in most beauty and skincare products

Phthalates - These are chemicals used to make plastic soft and flexible. Many are seen in perfumes and lotions, to name a few, as Diethyl Phthalates. They are endocrine disruptors and have been linked to birth defects, early breast development and increased risk of breast cancer. Unfortunately they are not always disclosed on labels and can be hidden under "fragrance" which are usually found in moisturisers, deodorant, perfumes and hairspray.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) - These chemicals are often used in soaps, shower wash, shampoo and toothpaste to help them get that nice luxury bubbly lather. However they are very irritating and drying, and can cause all sorts of skin flairs ups such as dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis and rashes. Some clean companies have had difficulty finding a good alternative, so they use SLS's in low dosages - the verdict is still out on whether low dosages of SLS's are safe.

Triclosan - This is a anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agent used in almost all skincare and personal care products. They are endocrine disruptors and are known for causing problems in the function of your thyroid. They are toxic to the environment and harmful to the immune system. This ingredient is not essential in most products and therefore should not be used because of its risk.

Formaldehyde - This colourless gas is usually dissolved into water to be added to beauty products as a preservative. This carcinogenic is very toxic and has been removed from most beauty products, but some companies are still sneaking them in to preserve their formula. These can build up in the bodies fatty tissues and has been linked to leukaemia.

Toluene - This clear liquid product is used mostly in nail polish and hair dye. It gives off vapors when used that can cause dizziness, headaches, nausea and drowsiness. Which can cause stumbling, fainting, sleepiness and in some cases death. Plus, it can also irritate the eyes, lungs and skin.

Propylene Glycol - Is a humectant used for hydrating in products and also used to keep them from freezing or melting in extreme temperatures. This is a strong irritant that can flair up dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis. They are known to take over the skin cells growth and then damage their membranes causing rashes and dry skin.

Sunscreen Chemicals - Unfortunately there is a growing number of harmful chemicals that go into sunscreen that are causing more harm than good. Synthetic chemical filter sunscreens are the ones to avoid, while physical and mineral sunscreen tend to be the safest. These chemical sunscreens cause skin allergies, damage to the environment and can cause reproductive issues.



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