The use of personal care products has caused the average consumer to absorb over 4.6 lbs of chemicals into their bodies through the skin.
Many synthetic toxins involved have been linked to side effects from skin irritation, premature aging, to cancer.
Richard Bence, a biochemist who has spent three years researching conventional products, said “We really need to start questioning the the products we are putting on our skin and not just assume that the chemicals in them are safe. “We have no idea what these chemicals do when they are mixed together, the effect could be much greater than the sum of the individual parts.” Mr. Bence, an advocate of organic beauty products, believes that absorbing chemicals through the skin is far more dangerous than swallowing them.
When chemicals enter the body orally, the enzymes in the saliva, and the acids in the stomach and digestive track break it down and help flush it out of the body. Chemicals applied to the skin however, are absorbed straight into the bloodstream and many times accumulate in our organs and fatty cells.
Chemical body burden is a term used to describe the build-up of synthetic chemicals and heavy metals in our bodies. Blood and urine samples may now be used to detect our body’s chemical burden. The American Medical Association (AMA) is now recognizing this term due to the increase of chemicals and metals accumulating in the American people.
Unfortunately, the FDA has not regulated or banned most of the harmful synthetic chemicals still used in personal care products (some having a long history as known carcinogens and hormone disruptors). Currently there are nine cosmetic ingredients restricted or prohibited by the FDA.
For perspective, The EU Scientific Committee on Consumer Products (SCCP) the regulatory agency that oversees the cosmetic industry in Europe has banned over 1,100 chemicals and the list keeps growing.
It is a known fact that some European cosmetic manufacturers will produce two formulations for the same product, one formula for the European market and one (containing toxins not allowed in Europe) for the U.S. market.
The only protection we have as consumers is through education. It is our responsibility to know what harmful toxins to avoid when shopping for skin care products.