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plant-based-beauty

Ingredients to Avoid in Your Beauty Routine

Victoria Davis

Here at Make It Classy, we're huge advocates for knowing what’s inside of your beauty products. Many of us have purchased hair and skin care products that have a very long list of ingredients.

Not only are there many ingredients but a handful of them are also ones you cannot pronounce or aren’t familiar with. Today’s lesson is to help you get familiar, so you can choose the correct products for you.

This isn’t all fluff either. Here’s some evidence to prove these ingredients are no good for your health:

In an analysis of ingredients in 1,177 beauty and personal care products marketed to Black women, about one in 12 was ranked highly hazardous on the scoring system of EWG’s Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database, a free online resource for finding less-hazardous alternatives to personal care products. 

To start this lesson off, be sure you know how to properly read the labels on your hair and skincare products. You can learn how to do that here.

Alright, let’s continue!

Stay away from these

  • Sodium laurel / laureth sulfate (SLS): It’s a cleansing agent found in many shampoos although it is also mainly used to degrease engines. You can find it in aggressive cleaners also – like those you use for garage floors and drains.
  •  Isopropyl alcohol: It can literally make your hair break! Although it’s in hair products, it’s also used in wood polishes and antifreeze (yes, for your car!)
  • Proplyene glycol (PG): If you’ve got scalp irritation, blame it on this one! It is known to break down the protein in hair which results in dull, lifeless strands.
  • Parabens: This one could be linked to disrupting hormones and even causing cancer cells.
  • Fragrance: This is a common one that should make you run the other way. “Fragrance” isn’t as innocent as it seems and this ingredient isn’t regulated by the FDA. This means, “fragrance” could mean anything.
  • Diethanolamine (DEA) Triethanolamine (TEA): Could come with allergens and cause eye irritation.
  • Petroleum: Don’t be fooled. Petroleum is a byproduct of oil production made of mineral oils and paraffin wax. It’s not made for skin or hair use. It’s what is left over during the oil production process – gross!
  • Mineral oil: This oil blocks your pores and coats the skin or hair. It does not moisturize.

The problem with this list is that these aren’t all of ingredients to avoid. There are many, many more unfortunately.

Learn how to make your own beauty products using plant-based ingredients with Make It Classy DIY Beauty Box. Learn more. 


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