Avoid Toxic Preservatives
There are a number of toxic preservatives – used to extend the shelf life of products and prevent the growth of harmful bacteria and mold – commonly found in conventional cosmetics. While preserving organic formulas is a necessity (we get that you don’t want your face mask growing mold), we’ve managed to find natural alternatives to these toxic preservatives to formulate our chemical free makeup, because some of the health concerns surrounding them are seriously scary.
Parabens are a practically ubiquitous preservative found in conventional cosmetics, usually labeled methyl-, ethyl-, propyl-, isopropyl-, butyl-, or isobutylparabens. Research around their health effects have revealed them to be endocrine disruptors, meaning that over time, they disrupt the normal functioning of hormones, potentially leading to conditions like adult onset acne, issues with menstruation and mood, and more serious hormonally related cancers. Their estrogen-mimicking properties can cause either overproduction or underproduction of estrogen, and because they’re absorbed through the skin and can remain in your body for long periods of time due to their fat-soluble nature, they accumulate internally with extended use. What this means is that the longer you use parabens, the more at risk you are. This all said, we’ve nixed them from our ingredient list in favor of a natural alternative (more on this in a second).
The preservative watchlist doesn’t end with parabens. We’ve also nixed BHA (Butylated Hydroxyanisole) and BHT (Butylated Hydroxytoluene), two petroleum derived synthetic antioxidants that are used to produce a plastic or elastic consistency in cosmetics, and to maintain the color and appearance in a formula over time. These two offenders are typically present in lipsticks (also in eyeshadow, blush and a host of other cosmetics), in spite of the fact that they’re known allergens which often cause allergic contact dermatitis when used by individuals with sensitive skin. What’s more, research has concluded that long-term exposure to BHA and BHT at high doses can be toxic, and they are still being evaluated as possible humancarcinogens by the National Toxicology Program 2016 report on carcinogens. Good thing we’ve opted out of using them for our chemical free makeup.
What else is on the preservative out list? Formaldehyde is a colorless, strong-smelling gas used in a wide range of industries and products including building materials, walls, cabinets, furniture and personal care products. It’s found in a wide variety of cosmetics, ranging from hair relaxing treatments (the infamous brazilian blowout) to nail polishes, to hair gels, to deodorants. It’s used for its properties as a preservative – it keeps products free from contaminants and bacteria – but its side effects include skin irritation, scalp burns, hair loss, and irritation to eyes, nose and throat. With this in mind, we steer clear of the toxic stuff.
Natural Preservatives in Chemical Free Makeup
So with all of these preservatives definitely on the cosmetic blacklist, what’s a natural beauty company to do? At 100% PURE, we use Japanese honeysuckle as an antimicrobial preservative. Using either a steam distillation or alcohol extraction procedure, Japanese honeysuckle can be converted into phytochemicals with strong antimicrobial and antibacterial features. Once converted, Japanese honeysuckle functions as a naturally derived preservative that effectively keeps bacteria and mold out of our makeup and skin care products, without compromising long term and internal health. It’s a body-loving alternative that’s allowed us to circumvent toxins while maintaining the integrity and shelf life of our cosmetics. In products like our Long Lasting Liquid Eyeliner, our formula features Japanese honeysuckle extracts in order to keep the richly pigmented liquid liner long lasting, richly textured and with an ultra smooth application. Plus, this must have eyeliner is formulated with black tea leaves instead of synthetic dyes, so its rich hue keeps your peepers dark and romantic, not dried out and damaged.