The importance of ingredients

In recent years, there have been increasing concerns about the ingredients used in cosmetics and the dangers they may have to human health. While I’m no scientist, there are a few main ingredients which seem to have conclusive evidence that they are dangerous. While I’m aware that these ingredients are legitimate under current regulations, I’m somewhat surprised that they are and, indeed, in other areas of the world such as Canada, some of them are banned. Other ingredients listed here have inconclusive evidence for any health dangers but, considering that there are so many different cosmetics to choose from, why not find ones which don’t contain these ingredients?

Parabens – used as a preservative in many cosmetics and have been increasingly linked to cancer and cell toxicity. Interestingly, many French companies have eliminated these from their products due to the demand for paraben-free products from French consumers. When’s Britain going to get around to doing the same thing?

BHT – a.k.a. embalming fluid! Surprisingly, this is in a large number of products, particularly those which we ingest such as lip balms. There is a large amount of evidence that this chemical causes neurotoxicity, developmental toxicity and builds up to cause damage to the liver.

Methylisothiazolinone – I visited Boots the other day looking for a new conditioner and nearly all of them had this ingredient. It is a powerful biocides which is used as a preservative but many scientists are concerned about its effects on the human immune system. In addition, BBC One’s Watchdog recently broadcast a programme showing the high number of people who have experienced contact dermatitis when using this chemical.

While I check all the ingredients of the products that I post on this blog, if you want to check the ingredients of any of your cosmetics, the best site that I have found is which has already got a large number of cosmetics listed and allows you to copy and paste ingredients from products. As a rule, I try to avoid anything which comes up with a red rating.

Despite the large number of cosmetics with these ingredients, I’ve managed to find many good cosmetics without them in and I hope that this blog is useful in reviewing them for you.



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