The industry tells us they create products within acceptable standards and guidelines. So does that mean that the chemicals in beauty products really not that bad? I don’t know about you but when I look at the mystifying array of multi-syllabic chemicals in my shampoo, I can’t help but doubt them.
I also think about how many ways we’re taking in foreign bodies into our own. They’re in the environment, in the preservatives and hormone-whacking additive in foods, for sure, so if I can lower my “acceptable range of chemicals” in my haircare and beauty products, that makes sense to me. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) and other consumer groups disagree with the beauty industry on what’s acceptable, I’m going to do everything I can to minimize my exposure.
As educated consumers, we know the beauty industry is given a LOT of discretion on the ingredients they use, and often, it’s only years after a chemical has been on the market and raked up damages and lawsuits, that consumer protection agencies intervene.
For example, it wasn’t that long ago that the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration issued a warning that formaldehyde, a popular hair smoothing ingredient, can cause breathing difficulty, eye damage (including blindness), and even cancer. And the EWG found that adolescent girls’ bodies are contaminated with chemicals commonly used in cosmetics and body care products
So, not to be an alarmist, but as educated consumers, why not take precautions? While I can’t make the financial decision for you whether to use natural hair products or not (some of them are pricey AF!), it’s always good to know some good natural and organic alternatives.
These are safer haircare products I highly recommend:
Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-Exfoliating Shampoo
This sulfate-free shampoo gets rid of gunk and buildup and contains binchotan charcoal that draws impurities from the scalp and hair follicle. Certified organic products like lavender, Shea butter and sweet almond oil makes it good for you and the environment. $42. Find it at Sephora.
Innersence Color Awakening Hair Bath
Pleasing to the senses this gentle hair and scalp bath is derived from the fatty acids of apricots and natural plant sources. It’s 100% sulfate-free and leaves hair healthy, clean and full of bounce without residue or dryness. $31 on Amazon.com.
This 100 percent vegan company makes alcohol, paraben and sulfate-free hair products, which they refer to as hair food. have shampoos made from organic herbal infusion and conditioners made from macadamia nut oil.
Anne Matea is Vurb Magazine’s Beauty Editor and also a professional traveler. She is a Romanian native, currently living in Bucharest. Her vurbs include cooking and having friends over for long dinners and even longer conversations.