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6 min read

Beware of these cosmetic chemicals linked to breast cancer

Beware of these cosmetic chemicals linked to breast cancer

How many beauty products do you use in a day? Face wash, shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, foundation, mascara, blush, lipstick, perfume, hairspray...the list goes on and can include dozens of products in just one ordinary day.

Most of these we would deem as essentials. Things like deodorant or lotion are a daily necessity for many, but the use of these products could increase your risk for breast cancer.

You’ve probably heard about or seen a lot of natural, non-toxic beauty products. The sad fact is that many conventional beauty products contain chemicals that are proven to be or suspected of being linked to breast cancer.

Steering clear of these chemicals requires a little extra work; you’ll have to read ingredient labels and learn some crazy chemical names, but in the end, you’ll rest easy knowing that you’re using safer, cleaner products.

Phthalates

Phthalates (silent “ph” on this one) are a group of chemicals that are banned in the European Union but are still widely used in the United States. In cosmetics, they’re used as solvents, or dissolving agents, but are also used in plastics, which could be used as packaging for cosmetics.

They’re endocrine disruptors, which basically means that they mess with how hormones work in your body. Studies show that phthalate exposure in fetuses, infants, and young children can disrupt normal development and even increase the risk of allergic diseases.

Phthalates are even on California’s Proposition 65 list because they can cause birth defects, reproductive harm, or cancer. But they’re still allowed in the products that we put on our bodies on a daily basis.

Look for “phthalate-free” on labels and read the ingredients list to steer clear of these chemicals.

Parabens

Parabens will be on an ingredients list as the last part of a word (like methylparaben or butylparaben). Ironically, parabens are put into cosmetics, especially those with lots of water, such as lotion or shampoo, as a preservative to protect us from the growth of harmful bacteria and mold.

Like phthalates, they’re endocrine disruptors and have been shown to increase the risk and growth of breast cancer. Many believe that low levels of parabens are not a health concern, but research is ongoing to determine the health risks associated with them.

For now, it’s best to avoid them if you’re concerned about their effect on your health. Many products carry the label “paraben-free” or “free of parabens” to make them easy to spot on the shelf.

1,4 Dioxane

This one is a little trickier. You won’t find 1,4 dioxane on an ingredients list because it is a byproduct of other chemicals being mixed together.

A lot of the research on 1,4 dioxane has been done on rodents with the chemical either being inhaled or ingested, though we’re more concerned with it entering your body through your skin.

More research is needed on its effects on humans, but the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Environmental Protection Agency all consider 1,4 dioxane possibly, reasonably anticipated, and likely to be carcinogenic to humans.

Since it’s not on a label, how do you avoid it? Avoid these ingredients, which can react to create 1,4 dioxane:

♦ Polyethylene

♦ Polyethylene glycol

♦ Polyoxyethylene

♦ Ingredients ending with -eth

♦ Ingredients ending with -oxynol

1,3 Butadiene

First, consider this: What is a chemical that is mainly used to create synthetic rubber doing in your cosmetics?

It’s a contaminant that is found in products that use butane as a propellant. The EPA lists 1,3 butadiene as a known carcinogen, and a study on mice found that exposure to it led to the development of mammary tumors.

To avoid 1,3 butadiene, check the labels on things like shaving gel, aerosol deodorant and sunscreen, and hairspray. Basically, anything that uses a propellant to distribute the product.

Hair La Vie has you covered

Whether it’s your diet or choosing naturally-derived haircare products, choosing to live cleaner, devoid of chemical additives, is healthier for you and the environment. Hair La Vie's Shampoo and Conditioner Set is designed to clean, revive, and restore your hair so that it looks beautiful and feels strong from the outside in. 

Formulated with a combination of 21 natural oils, extracts, vitamins, proteins, and amino acids, the shampoo and conditioner contain no harmful sulfates, no water-insoluble silicones, and definitely no parabens. There is Behentrimonium Methosulfate in the conditioner, which is in the sulfate family, but it isn't a harmful sulfate. This ingredient helps fight frizz, making it easy to comb through your hair. 

Final thoughts

The rabbit hole of toxic chemicals in cosmetics is unfortunately deep. Hopefully, this will give you a starting point for cleaning up your beauty routine and reducing your risk of developing breast cancer and other health problems.

When you’re on the hunt for healthy products, don’t take words like “green” or “natural” at face value. Read the ingredients list to make sure it’s free of chemicals that you want to avoid. And to make it even easier, Hair La Vie's Shampoo and Conditioner set has you covered. 

Not all chemicals are bad for you, and not all all-natural products are the best for you. Do your research, read labels, and enjoy the happy, healthy, beautiful benefits of cleaning out the junk.

At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

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    At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

    Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

    Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

    JOIN THE GROUP