With stories continuously developing over multiple scandals concerning a particular makeup company that I unfortunately used to be supportive of, I'd like to spread the word about certain ingredients that could potentially be a danger to your lips, eyes, hair and skin (and even worse…), and what to look for on the ingredient list.
Some ingredients, such as beeswax, carmine, and petrolatum are sometimes still a part of the product despite it being listed as "vegan." While beeswax isn't considered harmful...it is not vegan.
And let's face it...they can get away with that until someone finally points it out, and one company I'm aware of did in fact get away with this for quite some time. If they can do this, imagine what else could be floating around in your skin that can "legally" be gotten away with.
For now, here's three things to look for:
Petrolatum has been known to be in lipsticks (and hair products to produce shine), and can cause irritation or allergic reactions. Lipsticks such as these have been reported to cause a burning sensation, dryness, and redness, sometimes even a rash. Granted, these lipsticks last for a very long time (most are "lip stains"), but sometimes to the point where it can be painful to remove (even with gentle makeup remover), making the burning sensation last longer.
Another very common thing found in most beauty products (not just makeup) that could potentially be hazardous are parabens.
Now, granted, MANY products contain parabens because they act as a preservative, and are typically added in very low levels. However, constant use can lead to issues, particularly with your hormones (it is recommended those with cancer do not use anything with parabens). I myself have experienced an issue using a deodorant that was not paraben-free. It caused my arm pit to become infested with very painful and large bumps in a matter of hours. These were the result of a large amount of parabens penetrating the skin (in a particularly sensitive area) and creating cyst-like welts from the pores becoming clogged and irritated. With the suggestion from a friend after completely going into a panic, I switched to an all-vegan deodorant, despite it not lasting as long, and not only did my painful welts disappear, but my skin is much softer, more even, and less irritated/itchy.
Something else to watch out for is BHA/BHT. If exposed to these for long periods of time/constant use,it can begin to cause thyroid issues. These ingredients are also lethally toxic to some small mammals, and have been described as a "human carcinogen" or a "cancer causing agent."
The list honestly goes on and on, and fortunately most companies have begun eliminating most harmful ingredients. Just because you may not have an allergic reaction right away doesn't mean they aren't causing harmful damage that will be noticed later on.
I can't fully say that I've gone 100% vegan with my products because there's a few things here and there I'm looking for replacements for (I'm open to suggestions) and I'll be honest, I'm a makeup junky that has only recently started doing in depth research. I should've started long ago. I just found out Red 40 is not a vegan ingredient! But switching to healthier brands and products can show an immediate difference...I've seen it on myself.
Also...an extra tip:
Try to research the team behind the company and see if they work with a dermatologist. Some companies do not have a dermatologist as a part of their team, resulting in poorly made/dangerously made products.
So be sure to take a gander at those ingredients and stay safe from toxic chemicals! You can still look beautiful with 100% cruelty free vegan products.