by Julia Ward
The cosmetics business makes about $20 billion dollars a year. But it is one of the least regulated products on the market, which causes numerous toxins to be included in the products that many people use daily. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act does not authorize the FDA to approve cosmetic ingredients which only allows the companies to put everything and anything they think in each cosmetic. Parabens, pthalates, and petro-chemicals are often found in many of cosmetic’s ingredients list. This is because these large companies rarely focus on using environmentally friendly products nor do they care about the consumer’s overall health. Some organizations have argued that we absorb up to 5 pounds of toxic chemicals through beauty products each year that basically go directly into our blood stream.
Parabens, for example, are one of the most widely used preservatives to protect the product against microbial growth. Parabens have been linked to to cancer, endocrine disruption, reproductive toxicity, immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity and skin irritation. One of the greatest concern is that parabens disrupt hormone function, which is linked to breast cancer and reproductive toxicity. When parabens enter the bloodstream, they mimic estrogen and by binding to estrogen receptor cells. The fact that such large issues are associated with cosmetics that many use daily should cause great concern throughout the cosmetic industry. Why would someone want to put a product on his or her skin knowing that it is filled with a possible carcinogen?
But, currently, many consumers are focusing on buying eco-friendly, “green” cosmetics that will not only help the environment but help their health as well. By buying natural cosmetics, consumers help to promote sustainability. Many major brands have started to realize consumers’ interest in green cosmetics and have started to create their own eco-friendly products that are also biodegradable and recyclable in many cases. Make sure to look at the ingredients, usually found on the back or box of a product and also look for the organic certification to decipher whether or not the cosmetic is natural. Do yourself a favor next time you go to your local drugstore and look for natural, green cosmetics. You’ll not only help the environment, but your health due to the fact that you will not be putting numerous toxins inside of your body. And I’m sure once you switch to natural cosmetics, you will never go back!
Check out The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics to learn about more information regarding the use of natural, eco-friendly cosmetics.