The cosmetic and fashion industry is booming, yet there are no mandatory checks on the products before hitting the market. So, the lipsticks, moisturizers, and lip-balms used by you are allowed to contain more than what you bargained for. Moreover, some of the lipstick ingredients are bizarre like Tallow, which is a common fatty by-product derived from animal carcasses. Heavy metals such as lead, beryllium and mercury are also added to it.
No fixed standard for ingredients
There is no fixed standard for the shape or size of lipstick, type, number, or amount of ingredients used. The basic ingredients wax, oil, alcohol, and pigment are also not present in fixed proportions. Some of the ingredients are really interesting in these cosmetics, especially lipstick. Some of these are harmful for health, while others are strange.
Choosing a lipstick is more important
Lipstick forms a part of many women’s routine and is the basic thing in almost every woman’s cosmetic arsenal. Even history shows that lip colour was popular amongst Greeks, Babylonians, and Egyptians. Queen Elizabeth I used red mercuric sulphide for adding colour to her lips and cheeks. Over the years, many transformations came and today lipstick is the most popular and least expensive cosmetic. However, choosing a lipstick is more important than choosing any other cosmetic as it is the one that will end up in your stomach.
Apart from the basic ingredients, long wearing lipsticks contain emollients that evaporate quickly, leaving behind the pigment and a film that protects it. Matte finishes contain more wax and glossy formulas contain uniformly reflective ingredients. They may also contain fragrances, chemicals, and heavy metals.
- Methylparabens and propylparabens are preservatives used in many cosmetics and are known endocrine disruptors.
- Synthetic form of vitamin A, retinylpalmitate, is used in lipsticks though it poses a significant risk to pregnant women.
- Titanium dioxide is added to dilute red lipstick and make it pink. The negative health effects of these nano-particles include geno toxicity, oxidative DNA damage, inflammation, and modulate gene expression in your brain.
- D&C red 36 and D&C red 22 Aluminum Lake testing has raised concerns as researchers linked them to nervous system damage.
- Heavy metals such as lead, beryllium, thallium, cadmium, arsenic, mercury, nickel, and selenium, are also added. Some of these are toxic and carcinogenic. So, their levels need to be investigated, which is based on the number of times lipstick is applied and ingested.
- Ambergris is a yellow waxy substance secreted or vomited by sperm whales, used by perfume manufacturers to fix the perfume scent to your skin.
- Glycolic acid and elastin produced by snail skin is used to promote skin renewal and softer, smoother skin.
- Guanine is produced from ground fish scales to produce shimmering or light diffusing colour.
- Tallow is a common fatty by-product derived from animal carcasses that manufacturers extract using animals garnered from laboratories, zoos, slaughterhouses, shelters and even road kills.
- Cochineal are bugs purposefully ground to make a powerful red dye used to pigment your red lipstick
What to do?
Try to avoid these synthetic products and prepare safe alternative all-natural lip beautifying products at home using beetroot powder, cocoa powder, cinnamon and turmeric as colouring agents.