the 'yikes' list

Understanding the "clean beauty" revolution

 

LOOK FOR PURE INGREDIENTS

 

The health and beauty marketplace is full of products that have harmful chemical ingredients that are unregulated.

Endocrine disruptors are the most common. The endocrine system is the collection of glands that produce hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, and mood, among other things.

Adrenal insufficiency, fertility disorders, hormone imbalance, and hyperthyroidism are a few common problems that arise when the endocrine system is not working correctly.

We have compiled a short "YIKES" list of chemicals and what type of products use them.


THE BAD STUFF


Chemical name:
Phenoxyethanol:
Phenoxyethanol is a preservative found in cosmetics and personal care products. Big brand companies are using this chemical as a paraben replacement, and it can be found in almost every product. Prolonged exposure to this harmful chemical can damage a person's central nervous system.
Common products:
Baby wipes | Body lotion | Daily hygiene; shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, deodorant, toothpaste, and hair color | Makeup; eyeshadow, foundation, blush, and eyeliner | Nail polish



Chemical name:
Phthalates:
Studies have shown a link between phthalates and hormone changes that cause lower sperm counts, and other male reproductive issues and thyroid irregularities in women.
Common products:
Beauty products with "fragrance" as an ingredient | Food containers | Perfume | Plastic toys | Nail polish



Chemical name:
Propylene Glycol (PG):
Propylene Glycol is a toxic ingredient that causes skin irritation and kidney problems. Common reactions to this chemical are allergic reactions to
the skin.
Common products:
Ice cream | Liquid sweetener | Soda | Whipped dairy products

 

Chemical name:
Synthetic fragrance:
An engineered scent that may contain any combination of 3,000-plus stock chemical ingredients, including hormone disruptors and allergens. Fragrance formulas are protected under federal law’s classification of trade secrets and therefore can remain undisclosed.
Common products:
Cosmetics | Hand soap | Perfume

 

Chemical name:
Benzalkonium chloride:
A disinfectant used as a preservative and surfactant. Can cause severe skin, eye, and respiratory irritation and allergies.
Common products:
Face moisturizer | Body lotion | Sunscreen

 

Chemical name:
BHA and BHT -
Synthetic antioxidants used to extend shelf life. They are likely carcinogens and hormone disruptors and may cause liver damage.
Common products:
Body lotion | Diaper Cream | Face moisturizer | Lipstick

 

Chemical name:
Ethylenediamine-
tetraacetic acid (EDTA):
A binding agent added to cosmetics to improve stability. May be toxic to organs.
Common products:
Body lotion | Face moisturizer | Hair color

 

Chemical name:
Oxybenzone:
Sunscreen agent and ultraviolet light absorber linked to irritation, sensitization, and allergies, and possible hormone disruption.
Common products:
Face moisturizer | Makeup | Sunscreen

 

Chemical name:
Parabens (methyl-, isobutyl-, propyl- and others):
A preservative commonly used to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold. Parabens are hormone disruptors, which may alter essential hormone mechanisms in our bodies.
Common products:
Body wash | Body lotion | Face Cleanser | Foundation | Shampoo



The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has created a website with a database for checking harmful chemicals that are used in foods and beauty products. The site is www.ewg.org.