2004 – The world was outraged when traces of Paraben, the most common preservative in cosmetics, was found in breast cancer tissue. Paraben mimics estrogen and is a hormone function disruptor. They have been linked to reproductive, immunological, neurological and skin irritation problems as well as increased risk of breast cancer.
This shocking discovery was an eye opener for the consumers that all ingredients in their favourite cosmetic may not be “safe”. It led to the scrutinization of other raw materials being used in the manufacturing of beauty products over the years.
2010 – Brand Brazilian Blowout came under investigation as chemicals which turned into formaldehyde when heated were found in their hair straightening treatment. Formaldehyde is a probable human carcinogenic. High level of exposure can result in irritated eyes, nose and throat and can make one cough and wheeze making their products particularly hazardous for the salon workers.
2010 – Also a study by FDA discovered tiny amounts of lead in 400 types of lipsticks. Lead is a neurotoxin. Chemicals like lead build up in our body over time. So even low exposures repeated daily can add up to a significant exposure.
2018 - Johnson & Johnson’s Baby powder was alleged to be contaminated with asbestos leading to the development of ovarian cancer in 22 women.
The list doesn’t end here. There are many more chemicals being used in cosmetics that are under the scanner or have been outrightly rejected by the consumer over concerns of ill effects they might have on the human body with long term use.
Some of them which are common knowledge are:-
Sodium Lauryl Sulfates Or Sulfates
Which are cleansing agents and are responsible for creating lather in shampoos and soaps. They can irritate the eye and skin and cause dryness to scalp.
Used in antiperspirants to stop the sweat ducts from releasing sweat. Alzheimer’s disease and breast cancer are two main concerns linked with it.
Our society views a good head of hair as a sign of beauty. Greying and thinning hair has often been a cause of concern and depression. The chemicals in the hair treatment products have often been seen as a culprit in worsening the situation rather than helping to resolve it. Ayurvedic Treatments have been used in Indian households since ancient times and have proved to be more effective than the modern day “wonder” Hair Treatments.
Often used to keep materials like nail polishes, hair sprays, plastics etc, pliable. They can damage the liver, kidneys, lungs, and reproductive system.
Rising cases of allergies
With the rising cases of allergies due to chemicals in products, people are opting for Products With Natural Ingredients. While you still need to patch test even in the case of natural ingredient-based products, the chances of an allergic reaction are slim to none as these are natural and not artificially created.
An antimicrobial chemical found in hand and body soaps and toothpastes. Research has found that it may be harmful to the immune system and may also contribute in the development of antibiotic-resistant germs
No wonder then that the consumers have got scared witless of the chemical cocktails that are essentially our cosmetics and have started looking for alternates.
With growing awareness and consciousness about what a person ingests in the body and applies to it, the consumer is seeking greater transparency about the ingredients in products purchased and rightly so. With the advent and advancement of the internet, it has become increasingly easy to read up about the ingredients.
Ayurveda has come to the rescue of the informed and conscious consumer. Some of the ingredients in the natural and Ayurvedic Beauty Products have been utilized for centuries and known for their incredible benefits. Ayurvedic and natural ingredients-based beauty products have stood the test of time and proven their worth again and again.
Not only are these beauty products Chemicals and Toxin Free, they are based on the age-old practice of Ayurveda where each ingredient is chosen for the particular good that they can deliver.
And so, we see a Paradigm shift from products loaded with chemicals to more natural ingredients-based products in the cosmetics industry.
Skin Absorbs what is applied on it
Are you aware that our skin absorbs 60% of whatever is applied on it? It means that chemicals present in the cosmetics quickly enter our bloodstream and can reach various organs to cause harm. Now, no one would like toxins, hormone disruptors and carcinogens to enter their body.
Sustainable and Eco Friendly
Earth is constantly being depleted of its rich source of minerals which are non-renewable. Hence, our quest to look for sustainable, replenishable ingredients. Herbs, flowers, plant extracts, roots, seeds - not only can be replenished easily, the model of growing, harvesting, processing and selling can support local sellers and communities as well.
Chemical products create an imbalance in the environment. The demand for water and energy is higher in making chemical products and the resultant products and by-products can cause soil water and air contaminations and harm the environment. It is quite the opposite in the case of Natural Ingredients-Based Products and they do not harm the environment.
Safe for Mom’s and Children
We are ever seeking products which are safe for the expectant mothers and children. As Ayurvedic products are made utilizing Natural Ingredients and Herbs, these prove to be safe enough to be used by them.
Sense of smell
Products laden with chemicals are also laced with artificial fragrances to keep the smell of chemicals hidden.
The natural products have natural fragrances of flowers, plant extracts and herbs which smell heavenly and also act as aromatherapy on the go.
Can you eat it?
A good way of deciding if you should be buying a certain product is to go through the list of its ingredients and asking yourself the question-is it good enough to be eaten? And if the answer is no, turn to Ayurvedic/natural products.
Natural products made from flower and plant extracts nourish and protect our skins. They may appear to be expensive initially, but then when you realize that a drop goes a long way compared to the dallops of chemical products that you apply, you will understand that natural products are more cost effective.
Natural products are similar to the amino acids, antioxidants, fatty acids and other substances that our body produces rendering them more effective in promoting healthy skin and hair.
With modern day research and beautiful packaging, the natural beauty products have stepped into the world of luxury skin and hair care and are now more coveted than their chemical cousins.