1. The last time a law was passed regulating the personal care industry in the United States was in 1938 (yes that is almost 100 years ago!).
2. The laws in the US do not provide the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) with the power to ask cosmetic companies for safety data or to issue recalls of cosmetics found to be unsafe. In other words, the FDA really has no power to regulate the skincare industry, which means that you really can’t trust “FDA approved” products.
3. Only 10% of the ingredients used in skincare and beauty products have ever been tested for safety in humans.
4. The EU has banned 1400 ingredients from their personal care industry, but in comparison, the US has banned only 30, and Canada has only banned 600.
5. Dangerous contaminants often end up in beauty and skincare products (contaminants like heavy metals, hormone disruptors and carcinogens) and right now there are no requirements for brands to test for these contaminants.
6. Asbestos has been found to contaminate many makeup products on the market.
7. Fragrances are considered to be trade secrets, meaning that companies don’t have to disclose the ingredients that make up a fragrance. Hundreds of harmful ingredients could be hiding under the term “fragrance” or “parfume” so be careful to look for these terms on ingredient labels. Phthalates and parabens (which are known hormone disruptors) are often hidden in fragrances, so even if a product claims to be “paraben free” or “phthalate free” if you see the term “fragrance” in the ingredient list, those chemicals can still be hidden in the product.
8. There are no regulations for using the terms “natural,” “organic,” or “botanical” on product labels.
9. Many chemicals used in the skincare industry can cause hormone imbalances, and these ingredients are often not listed on labels. Phthalates and parabens are some of the most common hormone disrupting ingredients, and they are also linked to cancers as well as birth defects and infertility.
10. Ingredients that are known to cause cancer, neurological problems, behavioral problems, allergies, and infertility are all allowed in products marketed to children and babies.
11. The rates of cancer continue to rise, and it’s known that 1 in 5 skincare and beauty products on the market contain ingredients that are known to cause or linked to cancer.
12. Our newborns are already being contaminated with toxic chemicals before they are even born. It has been shown that the umbilical cord blood of new born babies contains over 200 industrial chemicals at the time of birth.
13. Women use an average of 12 personal care products containing 168 ingredients daily; men use an average of 6 personal care products containing 85 unique ingredients daily, and teenage girls use an average of 17 personal care products daily.
14. In Canada, if a company wants to introduce a new skincare or beauty product, it doesn’t need to inform Health Canada until 10 days AFTER that product has been on the market.
15. 95% of lipsticks on the market are contaminated with lead, and companies are not required to test for this contaminant, or to disclose it on the label. Lead is a known neurotoxin and has been banned from almost every other industry because it is so dangerous to human health.
Aren’t those facts horrifying? When I first learned about those statistics I wanted to be sick. We are basically being used as one giant science experiment. It’s no wonder we are becoming sicker and sicker as a society. The rates of obesity, diabetes, asthma, allergies, cancers, skin conditions, autoimmune diseases etc. continue to rise each day. And our genetics cannot explain it. This increased prevalence of disease is all due to environmental exposures, with our skincare and beauty products being just one piece of that puzzle. And while we can’t control many of the things we are exposed to on a daily basis, you can control what you are putting on your body. So why not choose brands that only use ingredients that are known to be safe? I personally have switched all of my skincare and beauty products to safer brands. It took some time, but over the past year I have rid my bathroom of all my old toxin containing products. So far, the best brands that I have discovered, and that I personally use include Beautycounter, Om Organics, Primally Pure and Neal’s Yard Remedies.
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