Top 7 Harmful Toxic Hair Care Ingredients

Top 7 Harmful Toxic Hair Care Ingredients

Did you know that the average woman uses 12 personal or beauty care products a day containing a staggering 168 different chemicals? Did you also know that human skin absorbs up to 60% of the chemicals in products that it comes into contact with and that they go directly into the bloodstream?

As a PhD level Bio-Medical Scientist that produces hair care products these statistics are very alarming and it is the main reason why I am extremely passionate about creating products that do not contain any harmful ingredients that are toxic to the body.

Many of these synthetic chemicals are skin irritants, skin penetrators, endocrine disrupters and are carcinogenic. Below I am listing the top 7 that you should avoid at all costs.

1. Parabens (propyl-, isopropyl-, butyl-, and isobutyl-)

Parabens, are preservatives used in many beauty items. They have been found to spur the growth of certain types of breast cancer cells and they appear to be able to do this even in tiny amounts.

They have a chemical structure that’s similar to estrogen, which means they can mimic the effects of that hormone in the body. 

Another study found that some men who use products containing parabens have lower sperm counts and less testosterone than men who do not use products.

2. Synthetic colors

If you take a look at your product label and notice FD&C or D&C, they represent artificial colors. F — representing food and D&C representing drug and cosmetics. These letters precede a color and number (e.g., D&C Red 27 or FD&C blue 1). These synthetic colors are derived from petroleum or coal tar sources. Synthetic colors are suspected to be a human carcinogen, a skin irritant and are linked to ADHD in children. 

3. Phthalates

A group of chemicals used in hundreds of products to increase the flexibility and softness of plastics. The main phthalates in cosmetics and personal care products are dibutyl phthalate in nail polish, diethyl phthalate in perfumes and lotions, and dimethyl phthalate in hair products. They are known to be endocrine disruptors and have been linked to increased risk of breast cancer, early breast development in girls, and reproductive birth defects in males and females. Unfortunately, it is not disclosed on every product as it’s added to fragrances. They can be found in deodorants, perfumes/colognes, hair products and moisturizers.

4. Propylene glycol

Propylene glycol is classified as a skin irritant and penetrator. It has been associated with causing dermatitis as well as hives. It can be found in moisturizers, sunscreen, makeup products, conditioners, shampoo and hair sprays.

5.Ethanolamines (diethanolamine [DEA], monoethanolamine [MEA], and triethanolamine [TEA])

There’s evidence that these chemicals are a human skin toxicant. Numerous studies have classified them as respiratory and organ toxicants.

They are found in a whole range of cosmetics including soaps, shampoos, hair conditioners and dyes, lotions, shaving creams, pharmaceutical ointments, eyeliners, mascara, eye shadows, blush, make-up bases, foundations, fragrances and sunscreens. 

6. Mineral oil and petroleum (also called petrolatum, petroleum jelly, and paraffin oil)

Mineral oil and petroleum are the basic ingredients in many cosmetic products today. Both mineral oil and petroleum have the same origins as fossils fuels ( i.e. coal or gasoline).

Foundations, cleansers, and moisturizers often contain mineral oil. By locking moisture against the skin, mineral oil sits on the skin’s surface and can potentially block pores, increasing the risk of acne and blackheads.

A huge health concern with petroleum products is that they can contain a chemical ( 1,4-dioxane) that has been found to cause cancer in animals.

7. Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) / Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES)

This surfactant can be found in more than 90 percent of personal care and cleaning products (think foaming products). SLS’s are known to be skin, lung, and eye irritants. A major concern about SLS is its potential to interact and combine with other chemicals to form nitrosamines, a carcinogen. These combinations can lead to a host of other issues like kidney and respiratory damage.They can be found in shampoo, body wash/cleanser, mascara and  acne treatment.

As a Medical Scientist that has performed bench research studies on a wide variety of diseases, I am proud to say that all of the products that I have created do not contain ANY of these harmful ingredients. Alodia Hair Care prides itself on creating high quality products made with natural ingredients that people can trust for themselves and their families.


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