There is much exaggeration in the beauty industry about so-called "green" products. There are literally thousands of products on the market that claim to be green, ecological, natural, safe, organic, floral and plant-based, pure, botanical, ecological, etc. – all undefined terms in a large unregulated industry. So, how is it a savvy consumer to know what is really "green"? Here are some helpful tips for navigating around these products and feeling good about what you put on your skin.
Definition of "green" beauty
Ecological products can be divided into two basic categories:
1.) Products manufactured and packaged using energy, manufacturing practices and the like. 39, packaging the cleanest and most environmentally friendly.
2.) Products made with natural, organic or biodegradable ingredients.
Since your skin is the largest organ of your body, it makes sense that what you scrub, lather and smooth in your skin is done using ingredients that have no side effects damaging. The absorption of small amounts of toxins into your skin over a long period of time can have a cumulative and damaging effect.
Make sure you read the list of ingredients! While many products have a long list of "organic" and "natural" ingredients – they can still use potentially harmful ingredients that could irritate your skin. Some products will be free of one or two bad ingredients, but include other potential harmful ingredients. It is important to pay attention to what is in the product, as well as what is not. Keep in mind that some potential harmful ingredients also have a "natural origin".
What to Avoid
Here is a list of some of the potentially toxic agents commonly found in beauty products that you should avoid.
• Parabens: Group of chemical preservatives possibly carcinogenic. Linked to breast cancer, reproductive toxicity and endocrine disruption.
• Sulfates: Sulfur-based compounds that irritate and dry skin and hair.
• DEA: A type of ethanolamine that has been linked to immunotoxicity and that could cause brain and nervous system damage.
• Ethoxylates: Chemical compounds irritating to the skin and considered as carcinogenic.
• Silicone: Synthetic additive that can be harmful and irritating.
• Phthalates: These compounds are commonly found in nail polish and perfumes. They are considered harmful to the reproductive system, have been linked to developmental disorders in children, immunotoxicity and endocrine disruption.
• Petrolatum: Developed from petroleum, it can be irritating to the skin, clog pores and can be contaminated by toxic impurities.