It turns out beauty is more than skin deep: The average person slathers, lathers, rubs and sprays, 10 different skin care products on his or her body every day—and since our skin acts more like a sponge than a barrier, we absorb the nearly 130 chemicals we regularly expose ourselves to. Cosmetics companies and the FDA maintain that these chemicals are safe, and many of them are—in small doses at least. But consider that the average woman ingests as much as four pounds of lipstick in her lifetime, and you begin to understand how a little dab here a quick spray there begins to add up. Other chemicals have known dangers: Phthalates, for example, which are often found in artificial fragrances, are a class of hormone disruptor known to cause birth defects, sperm damage, infertility, and the feminization of baby boys, for instance.
Finding the right skin care line for your face is something that nearly every woman struggles with. It seems like we can spend hundreds of dollars in a year switching brands or giving new ones a try simply to find that perfect combination of products that will give us clean, radiant skin. There is good reason for this search too. Not only does a great skin care product keep us looking younger, but it also gives our skin the protection needed from the sun and aging. However, finding the best skin care line isn’t always easy.
Finding great skin care lines isn’t always so definitive due to the thousands of products with various ingredients of varying levels listed under dozens of different brand names. While products loaded with collagen and other chemicals can produce results, they aren’t always the best for you or the environment. In fact, the best products for your skin should be those that are naturally made.
Organic skin care products are made without the use of harsh chemicals or parabens, and are becoming more readily available – both in terms of accessibility and affordability. They are nutrient packed, and leave your skin feeling clean and fresh while also providing you with a vitamin and mineral boost that will have your skin looking tight and firm. These types of products are also not tested on animals, and usually come in biodegradable packaging to give you a better piece of mind.
Many traditional skin care products can have the same results as organic skin care, but the chemicals within them come at a higher price. These chemicals, such as sodium laurel sulfate and triethanolamine, are more likely to create redness or dry out your skin, which then causes you to seek out other products in a never ending cycle. The skin irritations they can produce after using them for an extended period of time can also lead to further skin conditions you would have otherwise avoided.
To help your face return to a more natural balance, and therefore look younger and healthier, purchase natural products. These products generally include mild ingredients and natural extracts such as tea tree oil, and will have just as effective, if not better, results than traditional skin care products.
Almost 90 percent of the 10,500 cosmetics and skin care ingredients known to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have not been evaluated for safety by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review, the FDA, or any other publicly accountable institution, according to the Environmental Working Group. To be fair, no one's dropping dead after a using a mascara wand or a body wash, and manufacturers have an interest in creating products that don't harm their customers. But complex chemicals with potential unknown side effects lead us to follow the Precautionary Principle. That is to say, if we'd prefer to err on the side of safety until we know. We're not the only ones who feel this way: More than 1,110 personal-product ingredients have been banned for use in cosmetics in the European Union because of concerns that they may cause cancer, birth defects, or reproductive ills. By contrast only 10 are banned here in the U.S.
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