Are you aware that there are thousands of chemicals used in cosmetics and beauty care products? Or, that there are zero laws regulating chemical use in cosmetics? The global cosmetic industry is estimated to reach 863 billion dollars by 2023. Many of the chemicals used in these cosmetics are detrimental to our planet – not to mention human health.
The Not So Pretty Side of Cosmetics:
Cosmetics have been around for decades. When the cosmetic industry began there was no science behind the chemicals they were using. Fast forward to today, many of the chemicals they since the mid 1900s are still in use today. Now, research has proven these chemicals are toxic for people and the environment. Unfortunately, the US federal government does not require health studies or pre-market testing on personal care products. Here are some additional facts to consider the next time you are shopping for personal care products and cosmetics.
- 70% of cosmetics end up in landfill unfinished – many discarded end up in our oceans.
- Cosmetic packaging can take hundreds of years to break down in landfills.
- Cosmetics are most harmful to the environment once they are washed down our sink. From our sinks, the chemicals are released into our water system flowing into lakes, streams, rivers and public water systems – damaging wildlife and fauna.
- Cosmetics, including palm oil, are contributing to rapid deforestation and climate change.
- Chemicals related to cosmetics have been found in agricultural soil and household dust particles.
- The average woman in the US uses an average of 12 cosmetic products daily.
- The average man in the US uses an average of 6 cosmetic products daily.
- 89% of the more than 10,500 ingredients used in personal care products have not been evaluated for safety.
- Cosmetics have ingredients that are carcinogenic and contain neuro and reproductive toxins.
- 1 of every 13 women and 1 of every 23 men are exposed to ingredients that are known or probable human carcinogens every day through their use of cosmetics.
How can I make an impact:
Action 1: Global Goodness
- Read your labels. If the list of ingredients is filled with words you don’t know – it’s not healthy for you, or the environment.
- Research eco-friendly companies that don’t use harsh chemicals and have sustainability protocols such as eco-friendly packaging and locally sourced.
Action 2: Planet Protector
- All of Action 1
- Find a cosmetics company that has signed the CSC’s compact and uses certified organic and natural ingredients.
- Buy your cosmetics and beauty products from local venders. Typically small companies source local products and use less harmful ingredients.
Action 3: Earth Angel
- All of Action 1 & 2
- Ask your local government to start regulating the cosmetic industry.
- Embrace your natural beauty. Sometimes it is easier said than done, but don’t forget how amazingly beautiful and unique you are.