How Do I Choose Safe Cosmetics?

Nick Mann

Applying cosmetics is something that many women do on a daily basis. The problem with this is that many cosmetic products contain a plethora of harmful chemicals that some believe can lead to cancer and other health problems. For those who want to prevent these potential health issues, it's important to choose only safe cosmetics. This can be accomplished by buying products with minimal ingredients, buying products with natural ingredients, avoiding fragrances and avoiding certain ingredients altogether.

It's important to ensure that inexpensive and discontinued cosmetics are within their sell-by date.
It's important to ensure that inexpensive and discontinued cosmetics are within their sell-by date.

When looking for safe cosmetics, one of the best rules of thumb is to look for products containing only a minimal amount of ingredients. Much like healthy foods, safe cosmetics will typically consist of only a few ingredients. In order to get an idea of how safe something is, a consumer should look at the label located on the back of a product. If there is a huge list of ingredients, it should be a red flag that the safety may questionable. Most cosmetics that aim for safety will only contain a handful of simple ingredients.

Buying products that primarily contain natural ingredients is another way to avoid unnecessary health risks. When it comes to staying safe, the individual should be on the look out for synthetic ingredients that contain unnatural chemicals. Instead, it's best to look for organic ingredients that occur naturally and aren't produced synthetically.

A simple way to tell if a product is safe it look for a USDA-certified organic seal. Products with this seal mean that they are at least 95% organic and should be safe to use. Beware of products that claim to be organic, but don't have the USDA-certified seal. Products without a seal might use some organic ingredients, but most still contain a significant amount of synthetic ingredients.

Products containing fragrances should also be avoided when trying to choose safe cosmetics. These products may have an appealing scent, but may be jam packed with unsafe and unnatural ingredients that can have adverse health effects. Instead, it's usually best to stick with fragrance-free products. If getting a product with a fragrance is mandatory, then the individual should only purchase something with an all-natural fragrance.

In addition, there are certain ingredients that should be completely avoided. For example, formaldehyde and acetaldehyde are two ingredients commonly found in nail products that have been linked to cancer. Benzoic acid is found in some cosmetics and can negatively affect the nervous system. Also, disodium EDTA is found in some cosmetics and can upset the respiratory tract. In general, it's best to stay away from any unfamiliar chemicals.

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