WHY WE BAN THESE INGREDIENTS FROM OUR FORMULATIONS ?
Butylparaben, propylparaben, sodium butylparaben, sodium propyl paraben, potassium butylparaben, potassium propylparaben.
These are preservatives. To claim to be "paraben-free" seems to have become obligatory in the marketing of cosmetics and personal care products.
But the truth is that not all members of this family should be tarred with the same brush: those with short chains, ethylparaben and methylparaben, have been confirmed as safe by French and European experts. On the other hand, the most dangerous (isobutyl, isopropyl, benzyl, pentyl, phenylparaben) have been banned since 2014. However, butylparaben and propylparaben are still allowed, as well as ingredients that are compounds of these with sodium or potassium, even though they are considered endocrine disruptors.
A mnemonic to remember this? Those that start with P or B are "Pretty Bad"!
Paraffin oil, petroleum oil, liquid paraffin, petrolatum, white oil, Vaseline, mineral oil, silicone quaternium, methylsilanol and microcrystalline wax.
Mineral oils are very commonly found in cosmetics in numerous forms.
These are of no real use to the skin. They do not interact with it and do not offer any nutrients (vitamins, antioxidants, etc.). Mineral oils act as a block or barrier on the epidermis without penetrating it, although they are not toxic to the skin in any way.
On the other hand, they can lead to excessive skin hydration. The skin can no longer regulate itself, since the oils fulfill this role for it. As a result, skin tends to age more quickly.
They also have comedogenic effects due to their blocking action.
The petrochemical origin of mineral oils means that they are not biodegradable and their environmental impact is very significant. It is thus better to avoid products containing mineral oils, especially as they are not beneficial to the skin and can easily be replaced by products that are healthier, more effective and more environmentally friendly.
This is a hemotoxic and hepatotoxic preservative.
This is essentially used as a surfactant, in other words it allows the fatty ingredients of the formula to disperse in water. Sodium lauryl sulfate is a well-known irritant. Its close relative, ammonium lauryl sulphate (ALS), is no exception: when applied in a significant quantity, it is "highly irritant". Only a very thorough rinsing can limit the damage.
These are fixing agents that increase a product’s penetrative power. They are suspected endocrine disruptors.
This is an antibacterial agent that is a suspected endocrine disruptor. It appears to act not only on oestrogen hormones, but also on thyroid function.
This preservative is the allergen of the year! Health authorities considered its effects and banned MCIT/MIT mixtures in leave-on products in June 2015.
This is an emollient that has displayed endocrine-disrupting properties. It is classified as toxic to reproduction.
This is used as a texturizing agent. Analysis of epidemiological data and animal studies have not demonstrated any evidence of a link between cancer and exposure to aluminum on the skin. But as so much has been said about aluminum, we take a precautionary approach and don't use it!
These are used as UV filters. They are also used to protect a formula from UV light when the container is not opaque.
They are responsible for very many allergies.
This is an antioxidant. It is classified as a "possible carcinogen" by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and is one of the substances that France has submitted to the European Commission for an urgent, accurate evaluation of its toxic properties. It is suspected of being both toxic to reproduction and an endocrine disruptor.
Nanoparticles have been a source of concern and controversy over the last few years.
It is mainly titanium dioxide and zinc oxide nanoparticles that are used in cosmetics, particularly in sun products. They facilitate the penetration of the product and make it transparent. They are also present in skin creams and emulsions, make-up and toothpaste. They are used as colorings, UV filters, thickeners or dispersants. Most results on nanoparticles suggest a direct and/or indirect genotoxic potential in vitro and in vivo. Studies have also shown the presence of primary DNA damage.
This is a masking agent that reduces or masks the basic odor of a product. It is an allergen and possibly toxic to the human immune system.
Nonylphenol, nonoxynol, octylphenol, O-phenylphenol, propylphenol, amylphenol, heptylphenol, dodecylphenol, methylphenol (or cresol), ethylpenol (or xylenol), 4-tert-octylphenol.
These are present in detergents, cosmetics, cleaning products and a wide range of industrial products.
In addition to their very serious effects on aquatic environments, the European Union recognizes potential risks to fetuses and fertility. Moreover, nonylphenol is an active ingredient in some spermicides. In addition, alkylphenols are endocrine disruptors that alter hormones, reproductive organs and stimulate breast cancer cells.
PEG (polyethylene glycol) and PPG (polypropylene glycol) are used as thickeners, solubilizers, gelling agents, emollients, softening agents and cleaners.
As PEGs are not biodegradable they are very polluting to the environment.
They contain many toxic impurities (ethylene oxide, 1,4-dioxane, polycyclic aromatic compounds, heavy metals, etc.) that are recognized as carcinogenic.
They are also irritant and cause skin allergies.
FORMALDEHYDE or FORMALDEHYDE RELEASERS
These are anti-microbial preservatives.
Formaldehyde is classified as a class A allergen by the German Institute of Medical Information and Documentation and as a known carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Its harmful effects on health relate to the inhalation risk as much as they can arise from direct contact with the skin or near the eyes.
Formaldehyde releasers produce varying quantities of formaldehyde when in contact with water (during production of a cosmetic or during use). The most common ones to be avoided on an INCI list are the following: DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine and quarternium-15.
Finishing often with : « xane », « ane », « thicone », or « thiconol ». The silicones most frequently used: diméthicone, which fills and tightens ; but also cyclopentasiloxane, cyclotétrasiloxane or cyclométhicone that make products feel less greasy and smooth application. The toxicity of silicones varies. Diméthicone is not dangerous to the skin. However, those beginning with « cyclo » are considered very volatile, possibly disruptive to endocrine systems and potentially carcinogenic. Careful, cyclopentasiloxane alone presents no risk to the skin, but becomes dangerous if cyclotétrasiloxane is added. If toxicity varies in different silicones, all of them are pollutants. These products may take up to 500 years to become biodegradable.
EDTA is used in cosmetics to stabilize ingredients. It is also anti-bacterial. It is an irritant to the eyes. EDTA is also not biodegradable, thus a pollutant.
Endocrine disrupters are chemical substances suspected of perturbing or disrupting the hormonal system. These substances can mime or block the function of hormones in the body and may be responsible for serious pathologies such as cancers, infertility, diabetes or other issues.