While the interest in a biologically organic diet is now very high, this awareness is almost completely lacking in cosmetics and personal care products. In addition, the chemical, often carcinogenic ingredients are not even declared on the products packaging.
Body Care – A lethal chemical cocktail
It must not be an ordinary soap. We clean ourselves with a facial and body peeling and dab our skin dry. Then we massage them with revitalizing creams.
Next, a few splashes of deodorant come to cover the body odors; (our natural sweat odors, which are inevitable at the end of a hard working day, you have to say). After that, we may add a few swabs of perfume or aftershave lotion. All these body care products seem to be indispensable.
For about half of our adult and adolescent population – yes; I mean the women – now follows a complicated make-up procedure: sunscreen cream, makeup, eye shadow, nail polish etc. The list seems endless and hardly anyone knows how much it harms our health.
Personal care products poison your organs
Since the skin is absorbing organ, it absorbs all the mixtures which we apply to its surface. If these products contain useful ingredients, then no damage occurs. But if they contain a chemical that accumulates in the connective tissue over the years, our simple hygiene habits mutate into a risky lifestyle, which can give us many diseases.
What do you find in commonly used body care products and cosmetics? Perhaps you are surprised, because they often contain a cocktail of chemicals, which act as carcinogens (carcinogens). They contain for example:
• Skin irritants,
• Growth toxins (toxins, which primarily affect the physical and mental growth of children),
• Endocrine disruptions; (substances that stop the production of hormones or block their transmission in the body and thus inhibit development),
• Mutagens (substances that cause changes in the DNA, resulting in either cancer leads or birth defects)
• Neurotoxins (substances that damage our reproductive organs)
• Sensitizers (chemicals that elicit allergic reactions after repeated application on normal tissue)
You can hardly believe that? Before we look more closely at what this listing means to our health, let us consider why these facts are so little known.
Inside organic outside toxic cosmetics?
Actually, the question should be: Why do we allow this to happen? The fact that we do not yet see any direct connection between beauty and hygiene products and our well being is part of the problem.
Slowly but surely, we are more and more enthusiastic about organically grown food and we are therefore very careful about the chemicals and pesticide residues in the fruits and vegetables we eat, because we know that we are also absorbing these poisons. But we still regard cosmetics as products which we only apply externally.
Our skin looks like a sponge
It has not yet penetrated our consciousness that our skin is a living sponge, just as prone to the harmful effects of the toxins, such as our digestive tract. Our lack of awareness and distrust drives the rise of the body care industry.
While campaigns against the tobacco industry now bear fruit, such as the labels with the warning “smoking harm to health”; such warnings are not available on cosmetics and hygiene products.
How bad it really is
You can, of course, believe in the cosmetics industry, which is about billions of dollars in profit. As a huge conglomerate, the industry is able to sell its products more and more. In the EU, some toxic ingredients in personal care products have been banned since a law introduced in 2003 and entered into force in 2004. For example, the use of some phthalates (chemical with estrogenic compound) suspected of causing cancer was prohibited.
However, phthalates are only one substance of many, many chemicals that have found their way into the cosmetic products, and we use them without knowing every day. The Environmental Working Group, estimates that only 11% of the approximately 10,500 ingredients commonly found in cosmetics have been adequately tested for safety.
Poisons flooded our skin
In reality, we are flooded with a veritable flood of chemicals, each of which has the potential to cause great damage to the human body. The best thing you can do as a consumer is to avoid all chemical products.
So let’s take a quick look at a few more ingredients that can penetrate our skin, with possible catastrophic consequences:
- Coal tar in hair dyes
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
Hair toning and cancer
Studies with humans and animals indicate that the body absorbs the chemicals from the hair or dyeing quickly over the skin while the agent is acting on the head.
Dyeing on the head can cause more damage than you imagine.
Regularly applied, carcinogenic substances can be absorbed over the course of the years in only 30 minutes of exposure to the scalp, which then lead later to different cancer diseases. Already in the late 1970s, the relationship between hair and dye was breast cancer detected .
A 1976 study found that 87 out of 100 breast cancer patients had stained the hair for a long time.
In 1979, a study revealed the link between the frequency and duration of dyes and breast cancer, confirming earlier assumptions.
The greatest risk was felt by the group of 50 to 79-year-olds; which suggests that it takes years for cancer to break out in such cases. Women who began to dye their hair at the age of 20 were thus exposed to a double high risk as women who began to dye their hair at the age of 40 years.
Cancer risk increases with intense color
Another study from 1980 put open that women taking the natural hair color change in hair dyeing as opposed to those that only gray hair collapse, are at three times greater risk, perhaps by the color used (intensive) and the correspondingly long exposure time.
Sometime later, it was discovered that users of hair dyes were given four times as often rare cancers as non-Hodgekin lymphomas and multiple myeloma, like others. These studies also confirm the assumption that more intense colors such as black, dark brown or red increase the risk of cancer.
Poisons from personal care products migrate into the environment
Obviously, cosmetics, which are supposed to serve beauty, are not so beautiful when it comes to our well-being. The toxins in them are a great health risk, not only because we are exposed to them directly. Throw away all their cosmetics and still be at risk of being contaminated by toxins, albeit a much smaller mass.
After all, the toxins from the cosmetics and hygiene products end up in the environment. Soapy water and washed-out shampoo are sent into the sewer and poison the water, the soil, the plants and the life in the sea. When these chemicals are once in the environment, they came back through the food chain, and they are often more dangerous.
Considering our growing concern for toxins in food, it is kind of ironic that our exaggerate preference for cosmetics aggravated this issue.
But there is no reason to be discouraged. It is important to know the information and to inform others, so that people may at some time turn to the manufacturers of these toxic products together and ask for answers and lasting solutions.