Here are 15 of the worst offenders to look out for in your personal body care products:
1. BHA and BHT: Endocrine system-disrupting preservatives also linked to cancer.
2. DEA/MEA/TEA (diethanolamine): Can create carcinogenic nitrosamines when mixed with preservatives.
3. Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives: DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine, quaternium-15 and Bronopol, a.k.a.2-bromo-2-nitropro- pane-1,3-diol
4. Oxybenzone (BP-3/ benzophenone) and octinoxate (octyl methoxycinnamate): Two sunscreen chemicals that may disrupt our hormone system and that can trigger allergic reactions.
5. Palm oil (or anything with “palm” or “palmate” in its name, like sodium palmate): Avoid unless it’s fair trade/organic.
6. Parabens: Estrogenic preservatives also tied to damage to male reproductive system.
7. Parfum/fragrance: Laced with phthalates and other hormone disruptors and sensitizers. Note: some natural Euro brands with “parfums” are made with natural essential oils (it should say so on the label).
8. PEGs (polyethylene glycol compounds, and anything with “-eth” in its name): These are often contaminated with carcinogenic 1,4-dioxane.
9. Petrolatum/paraffin/mineral oil/petroleum distillates: Green your bodycare by avoiding these petrochemicals.
10. PPD: Can also be called p-Aminoaniline; 1,4-benzenediamine; p-benzenediamine CI 76060; p-Diaminobenzene; 1,4-phenylenedia- mine; 1,4-diaminobenzene. In all permanent hair dyes. Linked to some cancers.
11. Phthalates: Hormone-disrupting family of chemicals hidden behind the word “fragrance.” Look for the phrase “phthalate-free.”
12. Retinyl palmitate: Keep this one out of the sun as it seems to speed up carcinogenic effect of UV rays in mice.
13. Siloxanes: Pass on cyclo- or “-methicone.” Cyclotetrasiloxane (D4) and cyclopentasiloxane (D5) are
eco-toxic siloxanes (silicone-based polymers). Cyclomethicone is a mix of D4, D5 and D6 siloxanes.
14. Sodium laureth sulphate: Foaming agent in soaps and shampoos often contaminated with carcinogenic 1,4-dioxane.
15. Triclosan/triclocarban: Suspected thyroid disruptor and may contribute to antibacterial resistance.
Thanks to Ecoholic for these insights.
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