It may surprise you to know that reading the labels and checking the ingredients in your skincare treatments is just as important as checking the ingredients in food. Many of these products contain substances that are of no benefit to your skin, and may even compromise both your skin and your health. Here’s what to look out for.
Products like petrolatum — also known as paraffin wax, mineral oil and liquid paraffin — interfere with the way your skin breathes and prevent the natural elimination of waste products through the pores. This can lead to premature skin aging, which is the opposite effect you want from your skincare products. Petrolatum is inexpensive, so it’s widely used.
Parabens have been in cosmetics for many years as a cheap and efficient preservative. The problem is that they can mimic the action of estrogen in the body and contribute to the risk of cancer of the breast and reproductive system. Moreover, parabens are often man-made, and the manufacturing process generates byproducts such as 1,4-dioxane, which is a known carcinogen.
Technically, 1,4-dioxane is a byproduct of a manufacturing process rather than an ingredient, so it does not have to be listed on packaging. However, if you are concerned about the dangers of parabens, avoid any skincare products with ingredients such as polyethylene, polyoxyethylene, and ingredients ending in “oxynol.” To be extra safe, buy products labelled “paraben free.”
To smell great, you should use perfume, not perfumed products. Fragrances in skincare products come from chemicals that may be toxic when applied to the skin. These ingredients may be absorbed through the skin or accidentally inhaled, and with some artificial fragrances containing up to 500 chemicals, there’s a lot of risk attached. Most fragrances also contain alcohol, which can strip the natural oils from your skin and cause irritation.
Choosing healthy skincare products can put you in a minefield, since so many traditional ingredients are now known health risks. Coupled with the fact that not every ingredient has to be listed, such as that which is a byproduct of the manufacturing process, it makes sense to choose natural skincare products whenever possible. Natural products carry a “chemical free” or “paraben free” label, so if you want to avoid putting potentially dangerous chemicals on your skin, choose your products from these ranges.
All Mary Rostoplasc cosmetic products are free of sytnhetic fragrances, paraben free, and petrolatum free!