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Today’s post is all about harmful ingredients found in many personal care products.  Terra & Co.’s Brilliant Black Activated Organic Charcoal Toothpaste is 100% Natural, Vegan, Gluten, SLS & Fluoride free unlike many products on the market.  Below is information on a few of the harmful ingredients that may be in your personal care products and why they are harmful. 

Parabens – Parabens are commonly used synthetic preservatives to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria in many products such as makeup, body washes, deodorants, shampoos and many other food and pharmaceutical products. The most common types are methylparaben, propylparaben & butylparaben.  Of course, nobody wants mold or bacteria in their products, but these parabens can be more harmful than beneficial.  Parabens possess estrogen-mimicking properties that have been associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.  These chemicals are absorbed through the skin and have been identified in biopsy samples from breast tumors.  

Phthalates – Phthalates are a group of chemicals that are used in many products.  They help increase the flexibility and softness of plastics.  The main phthalates in cosmetics and personal care products are dibutyl phthalate, diethyl phthalate and dimethyl phthalate.  Phthalates are known endocrine disruptors and have also been linked to an increased risk of breast cancer and reproductive birth defects in males and females. 

Triclosan – Triclosan is used as an antimicrobial chemical in many toothpastes, antibacterial soaps and also deodorants.  Triclosan is known to be an endocrine disruptor and also a skin irritant.  With the recent rise of antibiotic-resistant super bugs, there have been many studies that show triclosan contributes to making bacteria antibiotic-resistant.

Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) – SLS is a common ingredient that is found in over 90 percent of personal care and cleaning products like shampoos, cleansers and toothpastes.  SLS is what causes products to foam.  SLS’s are known to be skin, lung and eye irritants.  SLS also has the potential to interact and combine with other chemicals to form nitrosamines (a carcinogen).  These harmful combinations can lead to kidney and respiratory damage. 

These are just a few of the harmful chemicals found in products we use every day.  What can you do to avoid toxic chemicals?  Read the ingredient list, look up unknown ingredients and choose your products carefully. 

Here are just a few places you can find information on harmful/toxic chemicals:

 Photo credit:  Burst App from Shopify

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