I took that photo above of my stash of lipsticks, lip glosses, rosy blush, smoky eyeshadow and bronzer from Au Naturale Cosmetics! My stash of glosses and eyeshadows is from multiple companies, including Burt’s Bees, Mineral Fusion (I discovered that brand at my local Whole Foods Market), Tarte and a few others, but Au Naturale is the company I use for everything else. The quality is the best I’ve found on my all natural cosmetics hunt for the best and longest lasting!
My makeup and I are best friends. What’s not to love about products that we can use to enhance our natural beauty? I think many women would agree with me that going without makeup for a long period of time would be an arduous undertaking and that our favorite lip glosses, blushes and eyeshadows are as essential to our lives as our favorite pair of shoes, dresses and jewelry. Can you imagine dressing to the nines for a hot date without a stitch of your favorite lipstick or mascara? Or what about going without styling that gorgeous hair of yours without some styling cream? Even the prettiest, most tame hair is bound to require some styling with products that are like superheros to our frizz-prone manes. Certainly there is nothing wrong with wanting to use cosmetics and styling products to help us have more fun and allow our natural beauty to pop. Certainly we are entitled to safe beauty products too! What is wrong with the modern day cosmetics industry is that the majority of products marketed for sale are seething with harmful chemicals that go virtually 100% unregulated by the federal government.
This is serious stuff for a girl who loves her makeup. For many women, makeup goes on our faces every single day and those chemicals do actually get absorbed into our skin and disperse into our pours and beyond. As for those hair care products, you can bet we are breathing in the sprays and vapors. When we dye our hair, our scalps naturally absorb the ingredients in hair dyes. For any smart girl who wants to protect her health, educating ourselves on the state of affairs of the cosmetics industry is a must.
It would be logical to assume that the ingredients in our favorite makeup products have been tested for safety, but reality is a far cry from what we would like to believe. Under the law, pharmaceuticals and even pesticides require some data for human safety, but the government has let the cosmetics industry right off of the regulation bandwagon and straight onto easy, toxin-friendly street. As Joseph H. Guth, a lawyer and biochemist at University of California, Berkeley, has stated, “The cosmetics industry is insulated behind the burden of proof” required under the law. No regulation means zero information on the chemicals we absorb in creams, deodorants, fragrances, and shampoos.
A lack of regulations means toxic chemicals can show up in unsuspecting products and places. A seemingly harmless trip to your local hair salon can result in exposure to a toxic cloud of white vapor if you chose to get a Brazilian Blowout, a chemical straightening treatment that uses formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is a carcinogen linked to nose and throat cancers, leukemia, respiratory problems and other health effects. Lead, a powerful neurotoxin, is added to some lipsticks and men’s hair dye. Butyl acetate, found in many nail polishes, can cause dizziness or drowsiness and dry skin. The number of other chemicals used in cosmetics with links to cancer is extensive and action certainly needs to be taken to banish these substances from what should be completely safe, utterly lovable makeup and hair care products.
Often the most worthwhile battles are the hardest to fight. Right now, removing a cosmetic from sales requires a battle in federal court. This is due to the ancient, Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act of 1938, which states that a beauty product sold to the public doesn’t need FDA approval. According to this Act, there is even no mandatory recall of products with solid scientific evidence that they are harmful. Given that this Act was passed in 1938, it’s shocking that no action to reform its mandates has been taken after all these years of unsafe cosmetic exposure.
For more information on toxic ingredients to look out for click on this link: http://www.greenwala.com/channels/green-business/blog/10954-17-Of-The-Most-Toxic-Ingredients-In-Cosmetics-Skin-Care-And-Hair-Care
I think a petition is in order to get congress to change this outdated law. Who’s with me?!