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4 Common Ingredients to Avoid in Skincare

It is a common misconception in skincare that our FDA protects us from anything that could potentially cause us harm. You need not look any further than how this agency handles the food industry to be suspect of how their efficiency in the cosmetics world may falter. It is truly left up to the consumer to be diligent and educated about what we put in and ON our bodies.

Before she has even stepped out the door in the morning, the average US woman applies over 515 chemicals to her hair, skin and body. Scientific studies point to your skin absorbing up to 60% of these ingredients. Once absorbed, they have free reign to your bloodstream and, in turn, all of the major organ systems of your body. To make matters worse, the companies that produce these products have very little oversight on which raw materials and ingredients they include in these products.

The personal care and cosmetics industry is like the Wild West, having minimal regulations, review or oversight. Unlike the pharmaceutical industry, these products have no pre-approval process before they hit market and enter your home. The only regulations pertain to color additives and ingredients classified as over-the-counter drugs, such as salicylic acid and some sunscreen ingredients.

Hundreds of these synthetically derived chemicals are common skin irritants with complimentary ingredients that even enhance their penetration. Many wreak havoc on our endocrine system, have the ability to knock our hormones out of whack and are even carcinogenic. Here are some of the most common ingredients to avoid and why.

For more information on these and ALL harmful ingredients in skincare, check out the Environmental Working Group’s website at

1. Sodium lauryl sulfate

Most commonly found in: shampoo, body wash, foundation, face wash, mouthwash and toothpaste

Has been found to cause or contribute to: skin irritation, oral canker sores, disruptions of skin’s natural oil balance, cystic and hormonal acne.

2. Parabens

Found in: makeup, moisturizers, body lotions, shaving gel, shampoo, personal lubricant and sunless tanning products

May contribute to: disruption of the endocrine system, reproductive and developmental disorders

Tips: Look for ingredients with the suffix “-paraben” as well—paraben-free products will be labeled as such.

3. Petroleum distillates

Found in: mascara, some moisturizers, hair conditioners

May contribute to: contact dermatitis, some forms of cancer as they are produced in oil refineries at the same time as automobile fuel, heating oils and some chemical feedstocks.

4. Artificial Fragrance

Found in: moisturizers, deodorant, lotion, face cream, shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, styling products, perfumes, makeup and more!

May contribute to: skin irritation, skin rashes, contact dermatitis, allergic reactions, asthma, hormone disruption, sun sensitivity, changes in skin coloration

Tip: Make sure any fragrance within your products is a results from essential oils, or buy fragrance free when possible.

Kosmetikos is a 100% Natural Skincare line produced in the USA. It is free of all sulfates, petrolatum, artificial colors, artificial fragrances and propylene glycol. In addition, it is never tested on animals.

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