Eight Cosmetic Ingredients That Are Bad for the Environment

Assorted-colored Venus Matte Lipsticks

If you want to become more eco-friendly, one sure-fire way to accomplish that is to stop using chemicals and ingredients that are known to be bad for the environment and your body. Sounds simple enough, right? But how do you even know where to start?

I remember when I first started my “clean living” journey years ago, I often felt overwhelmed and I had no idea where to begin. Luckily, today, there is a wonderful database that I love referring to. You can simply research beauty products before purchasing them and assess how many toxins they contain. I love referring to this website: https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/

You can find safe products in the store, but you can also fight back by making your own. Organic products purchased in the store can be expensive, so this is why I often make my own hygiene and cleaning products. If you look at the DIY section on my blog, you will find many homemade hygiene and cleaning products that you can start making today. Just follow this link to read more about my homemade products: https://thegreencrunchymother.home.blog/category/diy/

I have put together a list of some ingredients that you should try to avoid as much as possible.

  1. Glitter – We know, we all love glittery eye shadows, lotions, and so forth. But glitter is really just microplastic. Whether it’s the kind you buy for your food or for art, it’s all plastic and it’s not good for the environment.
  2. Microbeads – These are often found in exfoliating products. They’re dangerous for exactly why you think they are. It’s plastic. It’s terrible for the environment and is also a hormone disruptor. These things never dissipate into the environment, and you can’t really recycle them.
  3. Certain Preservatives – BHA and BHT are known hormone disruptors and are also included in many cosmetics to keep them fresh longer. The problem is, this is very bad for the environment (and you) as it can cause genetic mutations in aquatic life.
  4. Plasticizing Chemicals – Phthalates or DBP are put into things like nail polish, which keeps the polish looking hard while also making it flexible so it doesn’t make nails brittle. Anything with plastic is bad and should be avoided.
  5. Antibacterial Ingredients – You see it in everything now, from actual hand sanitizer to lotions and more. Even some hair products now have these ingredients.
  6. Synthetic Fragrances – This is pretty straight forward considering most people who have chemical sensitivities first start having the issue due to fragrances. These fragrances make plants and cells more prone to damage from other environmental factors.
  7. Oxybenzone – This is a chemical used in sunscreens. Studies have shown that it’s hazardous to coral reefs and has killed a lot of them. It doesn’t even take much of this ingredient to ruin the environment and destroy the reef.
  8. Silicone – This is found in many anti-aging products and has accumulated in lakes all over the western world. It’s even getting into our food chain via various sources because it’s contaminating our waterways across the globe, including in Antarctica.

Avoiding these ingredients is getting easier with the wide selection of eco-friendly cosmetics on the market. However, it’s essential to always read the ingredients of anything you buy and research what you’re not sure about. Remember, you have the ultimate control over what you buy and what you don’t.

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