What’s Inside My Make-Up Bag

Posted 09/07/2018 | By HealthCorps

By Lisa Woodlee, HealthCorps Coordinator 2017 – 2019

A few years ago, after I started to live a healthier lifestyle, I also began a journey of choosing “healthier” products that go on my body. I started listening to podcasts, doing research, and following bloggers who talked about make-up products. My skin is my largest organ, and it absorbs over 60% of what I put on it, so what I put ON my body actually ends up IN my body. I needed to be aware of what may be hiding in my makeup bag.

Here are a few common toxins in make-up that I learned can be harmful:

  • Parabens – very common preservative in cosmetics. They easily penetrate the skin and disrupt hormone function. Common forms that you may see on cosmetic labels: Methylparaben, Butylparaben, and Propylparaben
  • Formaldehyde – check your shampoo, nail polish, eyelash glue, hair gel or deodorant.  It is a known carcinogen.
  • Phthalates – used as a softener in products such as nail polish, lip gloss, eyeliners, blushes, deodorants and hair products. Exposure to this chemical can increase risk for cancer and cause reproductive harm.
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate – Found in shampoos, toothpastes, mouthwashes, bodywash, soaps, detergents and body wash been linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, organ toxicity, skin irritation and endocrine disruption
  • Fragrance – found on your labels as: Fragrance, perfume, parfum, and aroma.  There is little regulation and companies are not made to disclose what makes up their “fragrances.” They are linked to health effects including cancer, reproductive toxicity, allergies and sensitivities.

I know, I know – Makeup is expensive! You may be asking yourself, “How can I find better products to replace my current products?” Well, I did not transition overnight. But little by little as my products ran out, I started to buy better, toxin-free products. I often reference the Skin Deep Cosmetics Database by an organization called the Environmental Working Group thanks to one of our Board of Advisors, Dr. Mark Hyman. It became my guide as I explored safer make-up! Just search your product, and it’ll give you a score based on ingredient concerns!

You can discover the database here:

EWG Skin Deep Cosmetics Database

Here is what is currently in my makeup bag after going toxin-free:

  • 100% Pure – Fruit Pigmented Foundation Powder
  • RMS Beauty – Un Cover-Up
  • Tarte – Amazonian Clay Waterproof Eyeliner
  • W3LL PEOPLE – Mascara
  • W3LL PEOPLE – Natural Contour and Highlight Duo
  • W3LL PEOPLE – Narcissist Foundation Stick

Check out your make up bag, and read the labels. Learn about what you are putting in your body and how it may affect you.  Start to replace those products that have harmful ingredients. Enjoy the journey of finding healthier, safer products that work great for you.

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