Thursday, February 2, 2012

10 Ingredients to Avoid in Personal Care Products

(Good Information...this is part of an email I received from the Holistic Moms Network)

This year we are offering our Top 10 lists each month to give you simple, practical tips to help live a greener, healthier lifestyle in 2012! 

Ingredients to Avoid in Personal Care Products

The Why:

The average person uses 10 products on her body each day - from shampoos and soaps to lotions, creams, and makeup.  Many conventional personal care products are filled with chemicals and synthetic ingredients with varying levels of toxicity for your body.  Your skin absorbs a good portion of what you apply to it, increasing the number of chemicals in your bloodstream.  Here are our Top 10 that you should try to avoid in your personal care products:   
  1. Fragrance:  Fragrance is a catch-all phrase for more than 4,000 different synthetic chemicals that companies may use to help your products smell fresh, floral, or spicy.  Syntethic fragrance can affect your central nervous system, cause respiratory irritation and hyperactivity in children.  
  2. Pthalates:  Often found in nail polish, hairspray, and shampoo, pthalates are endocrine disruptors and have been linked to liver cancer. 
  3. SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate): Used in most foaming products and soaps, SLS and SLES easily penetrate the skin and have been shown to affect the immune system.  They also combine with other chemicals to create potent carcinogens. 
  4. Triclosan: Frequently found in anti-bacterial soaps, triclosan is carcinogenic when inhaled, particularly when mixed with chlorine in water, and may disrupt thyroid function. 
  5. Dyes: Artifical FD&C color pigments are synthetic chemicals linked to cancer and may deplete oxygen in the body. 
  6. DEA (diethanolamine) Along with TEA and MEA, DEA is a hormone disrupting chemical often found in bubble baths and shampoos and has also been linked to cancer. 
  7. Parabens:  One of the most widely used preservatives in cosmetics and personal care products, parabens have estrogen-like properties and have been found inside breast tumors.
  8. Petrolatum:  A petroleum-based product that inhibits the body's natural ability to breathe and slows down normal cell function. 
  9. Propylene Glycol:  A surfactant that is the active ingredient in antifreeze, it is commonly found in deodorants and after-shave, and can cause skin irritation and kidney or liver abnormalities.  
  10. Chlorine:  Often found in disposable baby diapers, chlorine has been linked to increased incidence of asthma, allergies, bronchitis, and heart disease, among other issues. 

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