13 Harmful Skincare Ingredients to Avoid
Skincare is an obvious important step for managing eczema and reducing flare-ups. Unfortunately, many creams and products contain harmful skincare ingredients that actually do more harm than good.
To help you make healthier and better-informed decisions, let’s take a look at some toxic ingredients in skincare you should aim to avoid in your daily cleansing routine.
Please keep in mind that we are in no way medical professionals. If you’re experiencing severe eczema symptoms like fever or an infection, it is best to seek medical advice immediately.
Bad Skincare Ingredients
Parabens – Parabens are a widely used preservative in cosmetics and pharmaceutical products. Commonly found in moisturizer, lipstick, foundation, concealer, eye makeup and makeup removers, they can easily penetrate the skin and have been detected in human breast cancer tissues, suggesting a possible link to cancer.
Triclosan – This ingredient is found in antibacterial products such as deodorants, cleansers, and hand sanitizers. In addition to being harmful to the environment, studies show that triclosan can also pass through the skin barrier and interfere with hormone function.
Phthalates – Phthalates are a group of chemicals used to soften plastics, in addition to being used as solvents in household and personal care products to make fragrances last longer.
Fragrance or Perfume or Parfum – As the name suggests, these are found in products that have a scent. Unfortunately, these fragrances are almost always artificial (unless they are essential oils) and in turn, are a common eczema irritant.
Siloxanes – These silicone-based compounds are extensively used in cosmetics to soften, smooth and moisten skin. They are also commonly seen in body or facial creams and make hair products dry quicker. There is evident that suggests siloxanes can impair human fertility.
PEGS – Polyethylene glycols are petroleum-based compounds that are commonly used as cosmetic cream bases. They are also used in cosmetics as thickeners, solvents, softeners, and moisture-carriers and can cause irritation and systemic toxicity.
Oxybenzone – The number one chemical used in sunscreens, oxybenzone is one of the most harmful ingredients in skincare products. Despite its sun protective abilities, it has also been shown to penetrate the skin and cause photo-sensitivity.
Diethanolamine, Monoethanolamine, Triethanolamine (DEAs) – These toxic ingredients are found in products that are creamy or sudsy like cleaners, soaps and shampoos. According to the Europen Union, DEAs can cause serious damage to one’s health over prolonged exposure.
P-Phenylenediamine (PPD) – It’s hard to find a conventional hair dye that doesn’t contain this ingredient. It’s known to cause allergic reactions in those with sensitive skin or who are suffering from skin conditions. This same ingredient is also used in rubber chemical and textile dyes and pigments!
DMDM Formaldehyde – Commonly seen in nail polish, hair products and deodorants because it enhances their shelf-life, formaldehyde is classified as a human carcinogen, meaning it can cause cancer – yikes!
Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) and Butylated Hdroxytoluene (BHT) – These chemicals are synthetic antioxidants that are used in preservatives for lipsticks, moisturizers and other cosmetics. They are also used as food preservatives. A possible human carcinogen, they disrupt hormones by mimicking estrogen.
Citronella – Also known as methyleugenol, studies show that when administered internally to mice, tumors appear. Health Canada has banned it from cosmetics because it is so toxic.
Petrolatum – This ingredient is used as a barrier in moisturizers to lock in moisture and also added to hair products to make hair shinier. When contaminated with another chemical known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, exposure to these ingredients can lead to cancer.
Recommended Natural Products
Now that we’ve gotten through the bad, let’s talk about the good.
Fortunately, there are some great, natural products you can use to soothe itchy eczema symptoms and reduce flare-ups. In terms of skincare, we love this dreamy Organic Manuka Honey Skin Soothing Cream. With just 6 ingredients, it’s gentle for both babies and adults. Its soft, buttery texture provides much needed relief to itchy skin without any burning or stinging.
We also suggest you wear protective clothing, such as Remedywear garments, to help reduce the severity of your eczema. Combining silky TENCEL with anti-bacterial zinc, they are the perfect clothing for treating more advanced forms of eczema, psoriasis, rosacea and more.
For example, these Eczema sleeves can be used to spot-treat itchy, sensitive, and dry skin on elbows, knees, arms, and legs. They provide lasting comfort day or night and can be worn alone or under clothing.
These Remedywear Pants for adults and kids are moisture-wicking and cooling. Offering a legging-like fit, they have the perfect amount of comfy stretch for protecting your sensitive skin without added bulk. Enhance the effectiveness of topical creams by wearing these protective pants overtop.
Do you try to avoid these skincare ingredients and eczema irritants? Let us know on our Facebook page!
Laura is a contributor and content developer for YoRo Naturals. She is in no way a medical professional. Her comments, suggestions, and reflections are not intended to replace any medical advice. Always seek the help of a medical professional before undertaking any diet or lifestyle changes.