What better way to enhance your natural beauty but with natural beauty products? You can’t go wrong with making use of Mother Earth’s bounty when it comes to caring for your skin! But before you go on a shopping spree for products that claim to be natural and non-toxic, keep in mind these assumptions about natural beauty products that you should never make:
- Products with dangerous ingredients won’t make it to the store shelves anyway, so everything in the market must be safe. As much as the government keeps its citizens’ well-being at the forefront, the United States does not have a product safety legislation as robust as that of Europe, Asia, and Canada. Around 1,300 ingredients are banned for cosmetic use by the European Union, while only 14 are banned in the United States. The Toxic Substances Control Act came into existence only in 1976 and of the 80,000 chemicals in the consumer industry circulation, only a fraction has been reviewed by the Environment Protection Agency. Just imagine: formaldehyde was being used by Johnson & Johnson No More Tears baby shampoo until 2014 when public outcry forced the company to alter their formulation to remove the dangerous substance considered as a human carcinogen.
- All products labelled as “natural” are good for you. The truth is that the word “natural” doesn’t mean anything. The FDA failed to establish an official definition for the term after the court overturned their initiative in 1998. “Natural” pales in comparison to the label “organic” which requires a product’s ingredients to be 95% organic before it can use the USDA Organic Seal, or 70% for an NSF Organic Certification. Simply put, “natural” products don’t guarantee anything—at least officially. Read the small print to determine whether a product is truly natural, because some ingredients may simply be “like nature” but are actually synthetic alternatives.
- I can’t possibly be affected by a small dose of a bad product. Chemical exposure in recurring low doses can damage your body just the same, but gradually. Your skin absorbs the products you apply, and you might have inhaled or swallowed a little amount of product without noticing. To illustrate, a sunscreen ingredient called oxybenzone was found in 97% of Americans. Since our bodies absorb this chemical faster than we can eliminate it, an accumulation of results may lead to endocrine disruption.
- I’m no guru that can comprehend everything listed on the product packaging. With almost unlimited resources online, it’s impossible not to find information on ingredients that you should avoid when purchasing your beauty stash. Do a little research on toxic chemicals commonly used in cosmetics and make a mental note to avoid them.
- If it’s loaded with safe and natural ingredients, it will work well for my skin. In a sea of quality products that emerged in the recent years, some bad ones have managed to stay in the market. In addition, nontoxic ingredients may cause irritation for some, like Bismuth Oxychloride found in mineral-based cosmetics. Don’t be disheartened, though! Natural skincare can be effective. You just have to find the right products that suit your skin type, and they don’t have to hurt your pocket! Affordable options are available in the market and ready for your taking.
The rule of thumb is to always be wary of what you put on your skin. Check the list of ingredients of your favorite products and don’t be afraid to toss them out if you find harmful chemicals in its formulation. Take extra care with sprays, powders, or lip products so as not to inhale or swallow any substance.
At the end of the day, you are in charge of taking care of your body. So arm yourself with the necessary knowledge! Use the right products, and become a healthier, more beautiful you.