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Safe Cosmetics

Issue: Cosmetics

How do you find out if your Cosmetics are Safe

By Dr. Kristie

Did you know that most people are exposed to over one hundred chemicals each day? Even more concerning is the fact that these chemicals come from common cosmetic products such as shampoos, makeup, perfumes, and skin lotions that most people use on a daily basis. Surprisingly, some of these toxic cosmetic ingredients are not even required to be listed on cosmetic labels since they’re considered to be by-products of the cosmetic manufacturing process.

Unfortunately, even the FDA isn’t protecting you against these toxic cosmetic ingredients. A new cosmetic product doesn’t have to be approved by the FDA before it’s allowed to enter the market. It’s up to the manufacturer to ensure that approved ingredients are being used in the products they produce and sell. Cosmetic companies aren’t even required to do pre-market safety testing before launching a new cosmetic product.

The FDA does patrol the market for violations and safety issues, but only after the product has hit the shelves and is already being used by thousands of people. This means it’s up to each individual to do their own cosmetic safety assessment.


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Fortunately, there’s a simple way to do an in-depth cosmetic safety assessment to check for toxic cosmetic ingredients. At an online site called Skin Deep cosmetic safety database, you can search for a particular cosmetic ingredient, cosmetic, or company from their database of 42,000 products.

Information on the product or ingredient is returned from more than fifty different toxicity and regulatory databases so you can get an idea of how safe the product or ingredient is. The Skin-Deep cosmetic safety database is maintained by the Environmental Working Group and is completely free, although they do accept donations for their invaluable service.

What kind of products are covered by this site? The Skin Deep cosmetic safety database gives you toxicity information on nail care products, fragrance products, makeup, baby care products, skin care products, and more. You can also find informative articles discussing the most toxic cosmetic ingredients and alerts about companies that consistently use questionable chemicals in their cosmetic products.

It may be the most comprehensive source available for doing a cosmetic safety assessment. You may be surprised at what you discover about the products you routinely apply to your skin and hair.



The bottom line?

To avoid exposure to toxic cosmetic ingredients, make it a practice to buy certified organic cosmetics, keeping in mind that “natural” doesn’t mean organic when it comes to cosmetics. Another alternative is to make your own personal care products using natural products from your kitchen. If you do use non-organic cosmetic products, check them out on the Skin-Deep cosmetic safety database to ensure that they’re safe for you and your family to use.

If you use cosmetic products, you may be exposing yourself to hundreds of toxic chemicals each day. Here's how to do your own cosmetic safety assessment on the products you use.

About the Author

She is a Medical Doctor with a concentration in Family Practice. She also has an undergraduate degree in both Biology and Psychology and masters in Clinical Pathology.

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Disclaimer: Articles not intended to Diagnose, Treat, Cure or Prevent Diseases.

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