The skin is a living tissue system that offers the body’s greatest protection from infection and the elements. Almost everything applied to the skin is partially absorbed into the bloodstream. Cosmetic ingredients can have long term effects on one’s health because of the combinations of chemicals that are generally used by their manufacturers. The use of organic cosmetics can help keep this under control.
Over the last few decades, many ingredients commonly used in cosmetics have been found to be carcinogens or irritants. Selecting cosmetics and skin correctors with all-natural, organic ingredients can help decrease overall exposure to these “chemical cocktails”. Because of this deluge of toxic chemicals the average person is wise to purchase organic cosmetics that contain safe, natural ingredients.
One should carefully read the labels of all cosmetics prior to purchasing them. Even though some cosmetics claim to be all-natural or organic, they may still contain ingredients that are potentially dangerous. The cosmetics that contain parabens are good examples of this.
Even though the FDA has deemed parabens safe for use in cosmetics, these ingredients have raised concerns about their potential affect on the endocrine system. Research suggests that using products that contain ingredients such as benzylparaben or methylparaben may lead to breast cancer in women and can also lead to lower sperm counts in men. Fortunately, there are plenty of high quality, paraben-free, organic cosmetics on the market today.
Phthalates are another concerning cosmetic ingredient. These chemicals are put into nail polish to reduce its brittleness and to make the scents last longer. Two of the most commonly used phthalates are DBP and DEHP. Research suggests that certain phthalates have the potential to cause liver injuries, cancer and reproductive-system problems. Many nail polish manufacturers have reformulated their polishes to be free from phthalates, but it is still important to read labels prior to purchasing.
Petrochemicals are contained in many cosmetics. These chemicals come from tar, coal, gasoline and other fossil fuels. When added to lotions and creams, petrochemicals help seal moisture into the skin. A debate currently exists about whether or not cosmetics containing petrochemicals are harmful. This is due, in part, to the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon ingredients. These ingredients are probable carcinogens, but many manufacturers engage in a purification process to help eliminate all but a few of the PAHs contained. Anyone who does not feel comfortable applying petrochemical ingredients to their skin should definitely consider trying natural organic cosmetics that do not contain these ingredients.
Synthetic Dyes and Artificial Colorants
Fortunately, the FDA now regulates artificial colorants in cosmetics. The agency is responsible for banning dyes and colorants that are believed to be carcinogens. Most natural organic cosmetics do not contain artificial colorants or synthetic dyes.
When purchasing all-natural cosmetics, one should keep in mind that in most cases, they do not contain preservatives. Therefore, it is best to avoid storing them in extreme heat. It is best to place containers out of direct sunlight and in a well-ventilated area. All jars should be tightly closed when not in use. It is advisable to replace any unused products within 90 days. Purchasing cosmetics in smaller sizes can help prevent waste. People living in hot climates might consider storing them in the refrigerator.
Some consumers have ethical concerns about cosmetics that are tested on animals or that contain ingredients that are derived from animals. Most natural organic cosmetic products are not tested on animals and do not contain animal-derived ingredients. Reading labels can help one determine whether this is true of a particular product.
Organic cosmetics are an excellent way to take care of the skin in a safe, natural way that does less harm to the environment.