from the Oprah Winfrey TV Show, April, 2008
How much do you
know about the beauty products you use every day? Maybe not as
much as you think. According to Consumer Reports, only 11
percent of ingredients in personal care products are tested for
safety in the United States. The Environmental Working Group
says one in 13 women are exposed to known or probable
carcinogens in these products every day.
Green expert Sophie Uliano says these types of chemicals in
products like shampoo and body lotions could be harming our
environment because they are washed down the drain into our
water supplies. Our bodies are also absorbing these chemicals.
"Our body's a living organ, and it absorbs almost everything you
put on it, so we really need to take care of that," she says.
So how do you know which products contain chemicals or
additives? Sophie says it comes down to simply reading labels
and knowing what to look for.
It's a process she taught friend and actress Julia Roberts. "I
got rid of half my stuff," Julia says. "When you look at the
ingredients and you can't pronounce them? That's a really strong
indication that you don't want to put it on your lips."
the beauty aisle, Sophie says to look for "paraben-free"
products, like those pictured above. "Parabens are
preservatives, and they can be hormone disrupters," she says. "Parabens
are in everything. They're in shampoos, body lotions, face
creams. … There's conflicting advice, but I stay away."
Sophie says brands like Method are a good option, but if you're
not sure whether a product is paraben-free, just check the
ingredients list. Parabens are always present if "ethyl parabens"
or "methyl parabens" are listed.
Another thing Sophie recommends avoiding is anything that lists
fragrance or parfum. "Fragrance is a term that is
ubiquitously used to mask a number of chemicals—dodgy
chemicals—that may be in your products," Sophie says.
A group of these chemicals called phthalates are used to make
plastic soft and gives lotion its creamy texture, Sophie says.
"Phthalates are also hormone disrupters and are pretty toxic,"
she says. "So, again, you want to try and avoid them."
Not sure which brands are fragrance-free? Try Aubrey Organics or
Burt's Bees. "Two fantastic companies," Sophie says. "Can't go
wrong with either of them."
antiperspirant may be keeping you dry, but you might start
sweating a little more when you find out about the chemicals
that could be in it. Sophie says trace amounts of aluminum are
found in antiperspirant only—not necessarily all deodorants. "I
stay away from it because it's a neurotoxin," she says.
Sophie's favorite alternative is called Herbal Magic. Julia,
however, uses nothing. "I don't, no," she says. "But sometimes
midday at work I freshen up."
"You always smell so good," Oprah says. "What do you do?"
"I can't give away all my movie secrets," Julia jokes. Read the
label before you reapply your face cream. If it has germall as
an ingredient, you might want to think twice. "This releases
toxic gases from the formaldehyde," Sophie says.
Looking for a new face-friendly moisturizer? Sophie recommends
trying brands like Dr. Hauschka and Suki.
The final ingredient to watch for is another hormone disrupter
called sodium lauryl sulfate, or SLS. "[It's] a foaming
ingredient which is used in toothpastes and in shampoos, and
it's also used in antifreeze and in car shops," Sophie says.
"[It's] a good idea to try and stay away from that."
If you can't remember what you should be looking out for while
choosing a product, Sophie has an easy shopping strategy for you
to use. "If you see a long list of ingredients with lots of
numbers and names that you can't pronounce, you probably need to
be looking for something else."
Watch video of the show here-Thank
you to Oprah Winfrey, Julia Roberts and Sophie Uliano for
Airing a show about Chemicals in daily used products, and
validating what Neways has been saying for over 10 years! Watch
favorite safe product line is right here!