Good makeup is never complete without lipstick, if you use the right shade it can flatter your features, make you look hotter, and give a unique twist to your look. Unfortunately, your favourite lipstick might be harmful to your health.
In medieval times women used to wear toxic ingredients such as arsenic, mercury, and carbonate. Fortunately, the makeup companies are more aware of the ingredients they use in their products now, but this doesn’t mean that makeup is 100% healthy. There are still some ingredients that we should avoid. Often, you can find these harmful components in cheap lipsticks, which aren’t made with high-quality ingredients. In this article, we are going to tell you the truth about those toxic ingredients that the companies don’t want you to know they use. The results will be quite surprising.
Toxic ingredients that might be in your lipstick
The skin layer around the lips is thin, which means they absorb product easily, and if you lick your lips (which most of us do) a harmful lipstick components can go into your mouth and therefore to your digestive system. One of the biggest problems with harmful ingredients on makeup is the lack of enough regulation from the FDA. Most of the time they are aware that the makeup product contains toxic ingredients, but still do nothing about it. This just means that we are responsible for our health, and should always do some research on what we are putting in our face or body.
Lead is a heavy metal (also known as plumbum) that is banned by the FDA. The effects of lead exposure can cause anaemia, fatigue, constipation, headache. Prolonged exposure can increase the risk of high blood pressure, kidney disease, and heart disease. Lead is able to pass the placenta barrier, so if you are pregnant, you won’t be the only suffering the effects of the exposure.
In 2009 the FDA made a study and found that some of the most famous brands contained lead in their lipsticks (L’Oreal, Maybelline, Covergirl). A curious fact about lead in lipstick is that it doesn’t appear on the ingredients list because it comes from manufacturer contamination, so there is no way that you can check if a lipstick contains lead or not.
What can you do about it? First, don’t panic. Second, avoid using brands that have been proven to contain lead in their lipsticks.
We understand that avoiding the usage of lipstick for the rest of your life is a painful punish, so try to wear brands that go through the strict verification process of their ingredients such as:
- Gabriel cosmetics
- Mineral fusion
- 100% pure
Cadmium is also a heavy metal. Just as it happens with lead, cadmium isn’t a part of the lipstick ingredients list, it comes from manufacturer contamination. The cadmium can cause stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, headache, and tingling hands. The long-term exposure has been associated with an increase in cancer risk. Moderate levels of cadmium were found in lipsticks on a study performed by the University of Berkeley.
Nickel is a chemical element that is used to make stainless steel, rechargeable batteries, and plating. Small doses on nickel don’t have harmful effects on the human body, but chronic exposure can lead to contact allergy, eczema, kidney disease, and increase in the risk of cancer. This was proven in a study done in 2017 in the Parvatibai Science College.
Manganeses is a chemical element that causes a syndrome known as manganism that involves facial muscles spasms, tremors, difficulty walking, irritability, when is inhaled it increases the risk of bronchitis.
Butylate compounds (bht, bha)
These compounds are used as preservatives in cosmetics, as well as foods. BHA comes as an endocrine disruptor. It can damage the cells, increase the toxicity levels, as well as increase the risk of cancer. BHA can also irritate the respiratory tract. Unlike toxic chemicals, you can check these compounds in the ingredients list. This ingredient is completely contraindicated in pregnant women, and children.
This is a chemical ingredient that is still used in the US, although is banned in the European Union. You can check at it on the label as DBP, DEP, DEHP, or phthalates.
Just as the butylate compounds it has endocrine disruption, it reduces the sperm quality and amount, reduce the fertility, and can increase the symptoms of allergies.
How to choose the right lipstick
Choose safe beauty brands. How many times have you bought makeup without even looking at the ingredient list? We know that toxic metals don’t appear in the ingredients list, but what you need to start doing since today is to research every beauty brand you decide to buy. A good website to look at is EWG, here you can know even more about toxic ingredients, and when you buy a product that EWG verified you’ll know for sure that all of its ingredients and the creation process was strictly taken care of to make sure the product is completely safe.
Doing your own lipstick is an affordable option, and the best part is that you can use 100% natural ingredients, so you are sure you are not putting any harmful chemicals in your lips.
Shea butter (around 1 teaspoon).
Coconut oil (around 1 teaspoon).
For red colours: Beetroot powder or natural red food colouring.
Caramel color: cinnamon or cocoa powder.
How to do it:
Slightly melt the shea butter and coconut oil with a small amount of water.
After melting it, add the colour. Put the mass in a comfortable-to-use container and you are ready to go!
For this recipe you will need:
Essential oils (peppermint or lavender).
For colouring of your liking: Turmeric, spirulina powder, cocoa powder, beet root powder.
How to do it:
Melt the cocoa butter, almond oil, and beeswax in a double boiler.
Add the colouring.
Remove from the heat, and apply two drops of essential oil.
Pour it into lip balm tubes.
Wait until it cools down to use it.
Hope it helps you to avoid choosing harmful lipstick in the future and be irresistible!