Consumers are taking a more active role in their health care and have become more ingredient conscious than ever before. Chances are you’ve had clients wanting to know how the ingredients they’re putting
on their skin will impact their health and where
those ingredients are sourced.
While clients have become increasingly diligent
about understanding what is in their skin care
and food, that same level of awareness tends not
to extend to the cosmetics in their makeup bags.
This is primarily because there hasn’t been as much
emphasis placed on educating consumers about
ingredients in their cosmetics.
Most consumers look at how well makeup
performs in enhancing or downplaying certain
facial features rather than looking to their makeup
to affect change in the skin. This is where we
have a big opportunity to educate clients on the
importance of extending skin health all the way
across the finish line.
Makeup doesn’t just have to cover up.
Makeup is typically on the skin
for a significant amount of
time throughout the day, and
in many cases, every day of the
week. Considering skin is a living,
breathing organism, you can bet
that anything on it for that long of
a stretch most definitely impacts the
overall health of the skin—for better or
worse. It’s time we start educating clients
about what to look for and what to avoid in
their cosmetics. With the right ingredients,
they’ll be better equipped to
continue the work you’re doing
in the treatment room
and take their skin care
even further. After all,
makeup can and should
be a continuation of
good skin care.
Until more recently,
the cosmetic industry
traditionally lacked safety data when it came to
chemical ingredients used in the products. Though
it’s improved over the years, there are still a
number of over-the-counter cosmetic brands using
harsh chemicals, parabens and fragrances in their
foundations, powders, mascaras, eyeshadows and
Among the most common harmful ingredients
used are sodium lauryl sulfate, parabens, synthetic
colorants, polyethylene glycol (PEG), petroleum
distillates, formaldehyde and fragrance. Let’s
explore each more closely.
Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). SLS is an
emulsifier and foaming agent most commonly
found in cleansers, washes, shampoos, soaps
and laundry detergent, as it is responsible for
that “sudsy” effect we’ve come to associate with
soap. However, it’s also found in various makeup
products such as mascara, despite it being a
known skin and eye irritant.
Polyethylene glycol (PEG). PEG is used in
makeup products including eyeliners, mascaras,
eye shadows, lipsticks and powders, to name a few.
Polyethylene is a type of plastic, and while it has
been deemed a low hazard ingredient for cancer,
it has been shown to penetrate the skin and cause
Formaldehyde. Formaldehyde and
formaldehyde-releasing preservatives are used to
prevent bacteria growth in water-based products.
Though formaldehyde is a naturally occurring
organic compound, most of what is being used in
the products we use is produced industrially and
has been recognized as a human carcinogen, as
well as an ingredient that commonly causes allergic
Parabens. These widely used preservatives
extend shelf life of products. Typically, products
will use more than one type of paraben and among
those most commonly used are methylparaben,
propylparaben, butylparaben and ethylparaben.
Parabens prevent bacteria, mold and yeast from
growing in cosmetic products. While there