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Detox Your Cosmetics

Detox Your Cosmetics

Our quest for beauty and attractiveness is often damaging to our bodies. Many toxins are found in cosmetics, skincare products, and hair products. We slather on plentiful supplies of synthetic chemicals every time we wash, moisturize our skin, or apply cosmetics and hair products. It is ironic because the skin is the body’s largest detoxification organ and not only are we hindering it from doing its important job, we are also adding more chemicals to our already overburdened bodies.

Most popular brands of cosmetics are loaded with artificial colors, synthetic fragrances, petroleum products, emulsifiers, preservatives, and solvents. Over 850 toxic chemicals are available for use in makeup. Diethanolamine (DEA) and ethanolamine (TEA) are two particularly potent chemicals used in cosmetics. These chemicals combine with other chemicals to produce the carcinogens known as nitrosamines. The United States Food and Drug Administration found that 37 percent of the makeup tested contained the carcinogens nitrosamines.

The most common preservatives found in cosmetics and hygiene products are imidazolidinyl urea and diazolidinyl urea. Both chemicals are considered toxic and are well-researched causes of dermatitis (skin irritation). They also release formaldehyde at temperatures of 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) or higher. Numerous studies prove that formaldehyde is a carcinogen.

Believe it or not, petroleum products are readily used in skin-care products and cosmetics as well. They can produce photosensitivity (promoting sensitivity to the sun) and interfere with the body’s own natural moisturizing mechanism, leading to dry skin and chapping—the very problems these skin-care products are typically used to treat.

Sodium lauryl sulfate, one of the synthetic substances that is used in shampoos and soaps for its foaming properties, causes eye irritations, skin rashes, hair loss, and allergic reactions. It is also a known mutagen, which means that it can cause changes in the information in your body’s cellular genetic material, potentially leading to disease.

Stearalkonium chloride is another toxic chemical used in many hair conditioners and moisturizers. Originally developed by the fabric industry as a fabric softener, this toxic ingredient found its way into skin and hair products because it is much less expensive than proteins and natural ingredients. Unfortunately, this toxin also causes many allergic reactions.

As if that weren’t enough, many synthetic colors are known cancer-causing agents. If personal-care products are labeled, these chemicals will appear as FD&C or D&C followed by a color name and a number. For example, FD&C Red Number 6 or D&C Green Number 6. FD&C Red Number 2 was found to cause a statistically significant increase in a variety of cancers in female rats at the United States Federal Drug Administration’s National Center for Toxicological Research. FD&C Blue Number 2 also produced malignant tumours in rats when it was injected under the skin. If a cosmetic contains synthetic colors, avoid purchasing it.

Synthetic fragrances used in cosmetics can also pose many health hazards. Consider that the single ingredient “fragrance” can have as many as four hundred ingredients, most of which are petrochemicals. Clinical observation by medical doctors has found that exposure to fragrances can damage the central nervous system and cause depression, hyperactivity, irritability, inability to cope, behavioral damages, headaches, dizziness, rashes, hyper-pigmentation, vomiting, coughing, and skin irritation. A shocking 95 percent of the chemicals used in perfumes and colognes come from petroleum! Some of the most common chemicals in perfumes are ethanol, benzaldehyde, benzyl acetate, a-pinene, acetone, benzyl alcohol, ethyl acetate, linalook, a-terpinene, methylene chloride, and a-terpineol. Smells beautiful, doesn’t it?

How to Detox Your Cosmetics:

While it is impossible to avoid all toxic ingredients, our toxic load is too high and we should take measures to reduce it. Start by reading labels on your cosmetics. No ingredient list? Sorry, but the company probably has something to hide. Avoid products without ingredient lists. If you see some of the ingredients I’ve listed above, skip the cosmetic product altogether. Switch to natural products but remember that just because you found it at your health food store doesn’t mean it’s healthy. The words “organic” and “natural” have been bastardized by the cosmetic industry and as a result don’t necessarily mean fewer toxic ingredients. I’ve looked all over and the purest, most natural, toxin-free, and gluten-free cosmetics that I’ve found are manufactured by Bellaphoria.

Adapted from The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan.  Copyright Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD.

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Read more: Allergies, Asthma, Bath & Shower, Beauty, Body Image, Cancer, Conscious Consumer, Depression, Eczema, General Health, Hair Care, Headaches, Health, Health & Safety, Holistic Beauty, Make-Up, Male Grooming, Michelle Schoffro Cook, Psoriasis, Skin Care, Smart Shopping, Women's Health, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Michelle Schoffro Cook

Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM, PhD is an international best-selling and 15-time book author and doctor of traditional natural medicine, whose works include: 60 Seconds to Slim, Weekend Wonder Detox, Healing Recipes, The Vitality Diet, Allergy-Proof, Arthritis-Proof, Total Body Detox, The Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan, and The Phytozyme Cure. Subscribe to her free e-magazine World's Healthiest News at to receive monthly health news, tips, recipes and more. Follow her on Twitter @mschoffrocook and Facebook.


+ add your own
10:46PM PST on Nov 7, 2014

Thankfulness to my dad who informed me relating to this blog, this website is really amazing.

5:07AM PST on Mar 5, 2014

Thank you

6:50AM PST on Feb 27, 2013

3:54AM PST on Jan 23, 2013

thank you good info

12:02AM PDT on Sep 29, 2012

thank you for sharing!

Alexandra De Markoff was one of best brand, in 2009 it was closed but I already have thay lip tips and skin care products

4:47AM PDT on Sep 12, 2012

Thank you for this indo.

9:26AM PDT on Sep 3, 2012

helpful information for protecting our health

5:00PM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

Thank you.

5:19PM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Thanks for sharing. There are some scary products out there and as a consumer we have to be extra careful to what we're using on our body.

1:24PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

Thank you for sharing this frightening facts.

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