I have a special treat for you all today - a guest post from PB&Julie's premier LTB Report Interviewee and clean beauty expert Amii Steele! In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Amii is here to break down the ugly side of beauty and offer helpful tips to help you navigate the "beautycounter" more knowledgeable than ever. Plus, shop Amii's favorite PINK beauty products at the end for which she'll generously donate all proceeds to the Breast Cancer Fund - the only breast cancer nonprofit that focuses on prevention of breast cancer rather than awareness. I hope you enjoy the post!
Lead in lipstick? 1,4 dioxane in baby soap? Coal tar in shampoo? How is this possible?
Simple. The $35 billion cosmetics industry is so powerful that they've kept themselves unregulated for decades. Not one cosmetic product has to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration before hitting the market. Incredible? Consider this:
- The last federal law passed governing the personal care industry in the US was 1938
- An average woman uses 12 products a day, which can equate to over 100 different chemicals
- 80% of ingredients in personal care products have never been assessed for human safety
- The European Union bans/restricts nearly 1,400 toxic chemicals, while the United States bans only 11
- Today, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer; 40 years ago, it was 1 in 20
- Of the women diagnosed with breast cancer today, 90% do not have a mutation in the BRCA gene, the gene most commonly associated with breast cancer.
- There are more than 85,000 chemicals on the market, with thousands being added each year.
Shocked? I know I was. So with all of this information, what can you do? Well the first thing to know is that small changes absolutely add up and can make a real difference in living a safer and healthier life. Here are some of my top tips:
- Choose safe personal care products: Use the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Database to find easy-to-navigate safety ratings for a wide range of products and ingredients on the market. Keep in mind companies have to disclose all of their ingredients to be listed in the database. There's also an app that you can download.
- Avoid "fragrance": Although it's just one little word on the ingredient label, "fragrance" can contain dozens, even hundreds, of chemicals—including hormone-disrupting phthalates and synthetic musks. Fragrance manufacturers claim the formulas are confidential business information, and sometimes even keep them secret from the companies that sell their products. Even fragrances that purport to be natural can contain chemicals of concern, so choose products that disclose every ingredient.
- Keep it simple: Choose companies that have done the homework for you. At Beautycounter we believe we have the strictest ingredient screening process in the industry. We have banned 1,500 ingredients which we will never use.
Let's help one another move to a safer and healthier place! xx, Amii