Are Your Cosmetics Causing Your Skin to Age?
Since the skin is the largest organ (and the most visible), it is no surprise that it is often the one we take the most care of and try to perfect the most. However, all of these skincare products and cosmetics might actually be the reason why you’re noticing age spots, wrinkles, and thinning skin.
But why? Keep reading to learn more.
Lack of Regulation
The beauty industry is huge, at over $500 billion worldwide. Because there are millions of different products and brands out there, regulating this behemoth is practically impossible, not to mention the lack of funding in the FDA’s beauty department. Since there’s so little funding, the FDA only regulates certain aspects of products, and even then, there are tons of corners being cut.
For example, petroleum jelly is not considered to be a carcinogen. However, there is no regulation on the production of petroleum jelly, and so products are often full of carcinogenic contaminants that aren’t even listed in the ingredient list.
The same goes for makeup and skincare products. The mainstream beauty industry is dishonest and unregulated, meaning that manufacturers can put whatever they want in your moisturizer without listing it on the ingredient list. The FDA randomly tests a very select, VERY small amount of products, so the vast majority of the products you see in the beauty aisle have never been tested for anything.
Many of the ingredients that ARE listed on the packaging are not even safe to be used on the skin, much less not on a daily basis. Because consumers can’t even pronounce the names of these chemicals, they give them no second thought. For example, did you know that methylene glycol releases formaldehyde, a known carcinogen? Despite that, methylene glycol is often found in beauty products.
The reason for this is that many chemicals have not been thoroughly tested, and it's unknown if there are side effects. It takes years, often decades, for a questionable ingredient to be fully tested for harmful effects. Many times, it’s too late, and people have already suffered reproductive issues, premature aging, or even cancers.
Let’s take a look at how some of these chemicals negatively impact the skin.
We’ll save you the boring, complicated parts, but basically, various chemicals induce inflammation in the skin, which damages the skin cells and the DNA that codes new cell production. When the skin cells become damaged, they initiate self-destruct mode in a process called apoptosis. As a result, the cell layers of the skin thin out and become more fragile, leaving you with thin, wrinkled, and damaged skin. What’s even worse is that since the DNA becomes damaged, new skin cells that replace the old ones do not function properly, and your skin becomes permanently damaged.
If you’re noticing signs of premature aging, do a deep dive into the ingredients of your skincare products; you might be shocked to discover that your favorite serum is the culprit of your wrinkles.
Skincare Ingredients to Avoid
Sulfates are a known criminal of premature aging. Most commonly under the name “sodium laureth sulfate,” “sodium lauryl ether sulfate,” or “sodium lauryl sulfate,” sulfates contribute to cell death and cause extreme dehydration in skin cells. They’re most commonly found in cleansers and other foaming products.
Parabens are a group of artificial preservatives that prevent the growth of germs such as bacteria and mold. While this might seem like a good thing, parabens also disrupt normal hormone function and may be linked to breast and other types of cancer.
Here are the most common parabens in skincare and cosmetics:
Formaldehyde is used to embalm people and is a carcinogen, so how does it end up in cosmetics? You will never see “formaldehyde” on an ingredient list, but you might see bronopol, DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, or quaternium-15. While these ingredients aren’t inherently formaldehyde, their chemical structures change over time to form formaldehyde.
Smelling good is great, but fragrances in your skincare and cosmetics? Not so great.
Synthetic fragrances are an umbrella term for literally hundreds of different chemicals, meaning you have no clue what’s in your beauty product. Many of these chemicals are endocrine disruptors, such as phthalates, which have been known to mess up puberty in children and lower sperm counts in men.
Other Causes of Premature Aging
Unfortunately, pollution is difficult to avoid, especially if you live in an urban area. The only way to combat these free radicals is by using skincare ingredients that are full of antioxidants that shield your skin cells and by double-cleansing when you get home to remove any pollutants sitting on the surface of your skin.
A little sun is good for you; sunshine helps your body synthesize Vitamin D, a vital nutrient that is necessary to sustain human life. However, excess sun and sun without a protectant is bad news for your skin. Those pesky UVA and UVB rays damage your skin’s microbiome and the skin cells and are a cause of skin cancer. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying nature, but be sure to use a sunscreen designed for your face before leaving the house, even if it’s cloudy out.
NuOrganic; Products You Can Trust
NuOrganic connects science and nature with effective ingredients with no side effects. We do not add any harmful fillers to any of our products and strongly believe that honesty is the best policy; what you read on our ingredient labels is what’s in the product.