Harmful cosmetics: which substances you need to pay attention to?
There is a continuously widening range of cosmetics on the market and companies are investing more and more money in research and the development of cosmetics. Unfortunately, despite this fact we are not safe because some people may be allergic to substances used for preserving or scent and color enhancement.
Most of the cosmetics are chemically produced so they contain preserving, coloring and emulsifying substances or antioxidants. These substances absorb quickly through the skin and reach the blood-stream easily.
Therein lays their danger, for they spread easily in the body reaching vital organs, and if they pile up they can cause severe damage.
The most dangerous preserving substances used are triclosan and paraben. The first is already banned for its skin irritating and dermatophytoses subservient effects. Paraben is a hormonal substance which takes effect both on the surface and in the blood. Although paraben has been associated with breastcancer many studies support its harmlessness.
Emulsions are responsable for the greasy and water components to stick together. The best known is polyethylene glycol (PEG) which is indicated on products as polyglycol or polysorbate. These substances make the skin permeable and in this way unknown organisms and poisons can easily get into our systems.
Artificial coloring substances and their effects
Almost every cosmetic contains some kind of coloring substance which makes the product sell more easily. These substances are man-made, artificial, thus can easily behave as allergens. The hair coloring substances went through the greatest changes, from the 1980s until today there is a rising number of studies about their healthdamamging effects.
As a result, many substances were banned for it was found out that they can cause bladder cancer or lymphoma. The products currently on the market are thoroughly examined and are harmless according to our present knowledge.
Don’t let yourself be led by the nose!
Half of the cosmetics contain scent enhacing substances which are listed only as perfumes. At least 26 of these substances are proved to be strong allergens, which ought to be made known to the buyers.
Antioxidant: only the name sounds good
In the component list we often read antioxidants such as butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) and butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA). These two are an imminent danger for our immune systems and they often cause allergy. Studies have shown their harmful effects on the fetus too.
Some cosmetics contain mineral oil extracts which block the pores and cause addiction to the skin. Moreover, they slow the regeneration of the cells thus causing wrinkles. They are especially harmful for people with oily skin because as a result of their use more pimples can appear.
Most shampoos, toothpastes and shower gels contain some kind of spume forming substances, such as sodium lauryl sulfate which has a strong degreasing effect. It can cause – by damaging the protecting surface of the skin – inflammation and scale.
Some of the anti-scale products take their effect by “sticking” it to the skin thus preventing the skin from proper breathing and regeneration.
Do anti-wrinkle products really help?
Products under this name are not capable of stopping or reversing the aging process. Even the best cosmetics can only reduce the depth of the wrinkles, but cannot make them disappear.
Not so long ago the aluminium derivatives found in deodorants kicked up dust because according to some research they increase the probability of breast cancer by blocking the pores, they also pile up in the breast tissues and stick to the oestrogen receptors.