Harmful ingredients in beauty products

Is your makeup safe? – Harmful ingredients in beauty products

Women will testify to the fact that our makeup makes us look extra beautiful giving an image of flawless beauty, glow and warmth to our personality. It makes us feel more confident and elegant when we walk out in a crowd. Our makeup box does not only fulfills our aspiration quotient but adds to our daily routine especially if one is a working woman. I can bet most of us hardly check labels or ingredients when we invest in beauty. We mostly trust a brand and choose a lovely shade that we like! but this piece would introduce you to harmful ingredients in beauty products

I used to take healthy living quite lightly till I became a mother. The moment that little boy was handed over to me, I became paranoid about everything especially about products I used on daily basis. From food we ate to products that were used to clean, I changed everything and still evaluate periodically.

My diet changed to include all green vegetables which I had never even tasted in my life and I started exercising (this was most surprising as I used to loathe exercise). I made sure everything that goes inside my body should be healthy but for the longest time, didn’t pay attention to what I was putting on my body until a week ago.

A week ago I was shopping personal care products at a supermarket and picked up a body wash which had an attribute named “Parabens free”. When I came back,   did some research and was surprised to know how dangerous Parabens could be.

Regulations – beauty products and personal care products

Are you aware that most cosmetics and personal care items are imported from Europe and US. Despite heavy cost, we are happy to purchase imported products, assuming that they are safe. But you would be shocked to know that there are no strict regulation in US and UK. Back in 2013, a product could go straight from manufacturing to store shelves without any type of approval or mandatory safety testing.

I am sure you would have heard about Johnson and Johnson being ordered to pay 4.7 billion dollars to 22 women who found asbestos in talc. This was in 2018 so relatively recent. Amazingly,  you would still see J&J talc sold in markets in most growing countries around the world especially in India. Consumers are still buying them without knowing the consequences of harmful effects it has.

In India, cosmetics manufactured are regulated by Central Drug Control Organization and follows The Bureau of Indian Standards for ingredient usage in cosmetics. These vary from state to state. But I can bet that they work like Mumbai BMC ( Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai that starts working during monsoon season every year). Rules are only followed when monitored and most departments doesn’t have enough time or space for monitors.

Naturals sounds like a joke to me!!!

I wouldn’t say all natural products are bad but most manufactures use the term “natural ingredients” vaguely. They might add one or two natural ingredients and term is at natural. If you read the label, you can identify it.

You would be shocked to know that most natural brands are some of the worst offenders because they use a higher concentration of ingredients that contain heavy metals.

I wouldn’t want to scare you but most brands currently available have heavy metals like Lead, Cadmium, Aluminium and Arsenic. They are ingested through our skin and act as slow poison for us. So before you choose invest, remember to avoid harmful ingredients in beauty products.

How to choose your makeup?

We can control every ingredient that goes in our makeup but we can control how and when to use it.  Before you invest in cosmetics, read the label. Choose a brand that is transparent.

Makeup does adds to our personality but avoid it if possible. I can understand that it does get difficult but it is better than curing cancer. God has given us a beautiful body and we should respect and enjoy it. Adding glamour to our world is great but I am sure we can do without it.

If you feel beautiful, you look beautiful

Read 5 things in your kitchen that lead to hormonal imbalances

Here is the list of harmful chemicals that you should avoid in cosmetics and beauty products


Paraben free product is the cause I am sharing this information with you so I guess this so be at the top. Paraben is found in everything including your daily soap, skincare, body washes or makeup lotion. If the label read Paraben then it is better to avoid it. Parabens are known as endocrine disruptors. It is important to know that Parabens causes hormonal imbalances and is known to be major cause for breast cancer. This is one of the top harmful ingredients in beauty products.

Parfum or fragrances

Every single product including our safe Dettol hand wash has Parfum. Most manufactures don’t clearly mention the names. The parfum are responsible for Migraine and allergic reactions.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate

These are forming agents and used in all personal care products. SLS and SLES contribute to skin irritation, misbalance of natural skin’s oil and in long run eye damage.

Aminophenol, Diaminobenzene, Phenylenediamine (Coal Tar)

Coal Tar is usually added to hair dyes and Shampoos. Coal Tar is by product if coal processing is used by hair professional on daily basis. Most anti dandruff shampoos and Hair dyes have coal tar. Europe has banned it but FDA still approves it. This is quite common harmful ingredients in beauty products

Harmful ingredients in beauty products
Harmful ingredients in beauty products

Founds in Scrubs, body wash, makeup and toothpaste. These chemicals penetrate the skin and and causes irritation. For few of us, this might make our skin more dull


Oxybenzone is usually found in sunscreen. A study done in UK identified Oxybenzone lead to hormonal imbalances thus leading to lifestyle diseases.


Found in nail paints and dyes. Toluene is toxic for our immune system and leads to infertility. Most pregnant women are advised to stay away from hair dyes since Toluene inside the dye could affect the growth of foetus.

Harmful effects of ingredients in cosmetics / beauty products

You would be shocked to know how these chemicals affect our body. Applying makeup every day can have several harmful side effects on your skin and body.

  • Headaches
  • Hair problems
  • Acne
  • Skin Allergies
  • Eye infections
  • Infertility
  • Premature aging
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Cancer
  •  Skin dis-coloration

After reading this, if you are feeling disappointed and confused about whom to trust and what product to use, you are not alone as I was there. Now, I am in the same river but in a different boat. We obviously can’t stop using everything. Few things are almost a daily part of our life but we can surely try to minimize usage, maybe add something to our diet that could allow our body to heal etc.. Beauty products does make one look good but also adds harmful chemicals to our lovely God given skin. Adding exercise and eating healthy might be far more helpful in making your skin glow. Aim to achieve happiness within because people accept you the way you are in a more positive way!!!

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harmful ingredients in beauty products
Harmful ingredients in beauty products

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34 thoughts on “Is your makeup safe? – Harmful ingredients in beauty products

  1. thanks for sharing this useful & informative piece, learnt so much more about make up from this sharing. This definitely helpful to me.

  2. I’ve only recently begun to really pay attention to the ingredients in my makeup. It can be so difficult to understand the labels or avoid bad ingredients. This is so helpful!

  3. This is why I’m super careful before buying my skincare products. Normally, I am always googling about all the ingredients of a product before I buy it. It’s really funny how brands that claim to sell eco-beauty products actually are misleading people. Thank you for the heads-up!

  4. Since I have been working from home, I haven’t used makeup as I used. Now, your post makes me think and I will be careful if I have to use them.

  5. Excuse me while I go take this list to my makeup bin and see what I have! I’ve been trying to cut out harmful chemicals as much as possible in all aspects of life. I’ve been doing good with cleaners and kitchen products but haven’t touched the bathroom much yet.

  6. I don’t use too many beauty products to be honest, but what I do wear is usually as natural as possible and cruelty free… there are just so many nasty chemicals in beauty products!

  7. I’ve recently started looking at ingredients in everything, from food, make-up to hair products to try and become healthie. This list is so helpful and I’m going to bookmark it so I don’t forget what to look out for! Thanks so much for sharing!

  8. There is so much crap in the beauty products out there today! I’ve noticed SUCH a difference now that I used natural makeup – my skin feels much better and look so much more alive.

  9. this is very informative. I myself have very sensitive skin, that’s why I can’t even put on makeup on a daily basis or even when I have to go out. until now I’ve been having problems with my breakouts that have been here for so many months already. that’s why as much as possible I don’t put any beauty products in my face anymore. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Some beauty products label themselves as natural yet are full of all sorts of nasties. It’s only when you read the ingredients that you discover this.

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