How many products do you use on your skin everyday? A soap, a scrub, a full 6-step routine? Well it doesn't matter how many steps you take, because what really matters is what’s in them. Yes, imagine lathering on toxic chemicals on your body every-single-day. Yikes. But the unfortunate truth is that most cosmetic products do have harsh chemicals. Things like Sulfates, Parabens, just to name a few. So what exactly are these chemicals and how are they bad for you?
Well, Sulfates (or its variations SLS, SLES) are salts that act as cleaning agents. You find them commonly in things like soap, shampoo, toothpaste, cleanser, etc. The reason they are so popular is because they pick up the oils and dirt easily, but also create a lather that makes it feel super clean. These sulfates in high amounts over time, cause irritation and strip the top epidermal layer of the skin. You can read over the full study here . Shelf products have to follow a regulation that limits the amount of sulfates in their products in order for it to be remotely safe. But more than that, the ethicality behind their elaborate animal testing is questionable. Usually, sulfates are synthesized from petroleum, a nonrenewable resource, which is not good for the planet either. For this environmental & ethical reason alone, sulfates are avoidable. Sulfate-Free products are now available in the market, however they do not have the same lather-y effect that seems to be very psychologically satisfying.
On the other hand, we have Parabens. They are chemicals used as preservatives in cosmetic products to prevent micro growth. Unfortunately, they have a tendency to bind with the hormones in our body, especially estrogen, and disrupt the normal hormone system. Studies show they have been linked to skin cancer and developmental & reproductive toxicity. As this hormone system keeps many functions of our body in check, it’s important to dodge products with long chains of Parabens. If you do come across products that have parabens, make sure they are methyl- and ethyl- as they are the safest versions to use.
There are many different chemicals that are concerning in their use in cosmetics. But the most popular by far are sulfates and parabens. It is important to keep a watch on those product labels and check for the amounts of each chemical you are comfortable using. The guiding principle in toxicology is that the dose makes the poison, so why are you willing to risk it?
One of the reasons The CosKit Company advocates for Sulfate-Free and Paraben-Free products, is because we care about what goes onto your skin. Our products use natural alternatives to Sulfates and Parabens that make it incredibly safe to use and good for the planet too! Go Natural!