Dirty Dozen

One of the best ways to make small changes in your home is to be aware of what ingredients to avoid. Let’s talk about the Dirty Dozen; the Dirty Dozen is a list of twelve ingredients that we suggest avoiding when choosing products for your home.

1. BHA and BHT is an Endocrine disruptor and carcinogen and is used mainly in cosmetics as preservatives.

2. Coal tar dyes are carcinogens and have a heavy metal toxicity; they are commonly found in processed foods, lipstick, hair dyes.

3. DEA-related ingredients are also carcinogens; they are found in creamy or foaming products, such as moisturizers and shampoos.

4. Dibutyl phthalates are Endocrine disruptors, as well as a reproductive toxicant; they are commonly used in nail care products.

5. Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives are a carcinogen; they are used in a variety of cosmetics as preservatives.

6. Parabens are Endocrine disruptors and they may interfere with male reproduction; they are used in cosmetics as preservatives.

7. Parfum/Fragrance are carcinogens, and can cause neurotoxicity, allergies and skin sensitivities; they are used in variety of cosmetics to add aroma. Companies do not have to disclose the ingredients due to “trade secret”.

8. PEG compounds: can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane which may be a carcinogen; this ingredient is commonly used as the base for cosmetic creams.

9. Petrolatum is also carcinogen; it is used in hair products for shine, and as the moisture barrier in lip balms/sticks.

10. Siloxanes are also Endocrine disruptors, as well as a reproductive toxicant; they are used in cosmetics to soften, smooth & moisten.

11. Sodium laureth sulfates are carcinogens; they are used in foaming cosmetics, shampoos, cleansers, and bubble bath.

12. Triclosans are also Endocrine disruptors, and can cause antibiotic resistance; they are found in toothpastes, cleansers, and antiperspirants.

What is an Endocrine Disruptor? Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that may interfere with the body’s endocrine system and produce adverse developmental, reproductive, neurological, and immune effects in both humans and wildlife. According to the Environmental Working Group, “There is no end to the tricks that endocrine disruptors can play on our bodies: increasing production of certain hormones; decreasing production of others; imitating hormones; turning one hormone into another; interfering with hormone signaling; telling cells to die prematurely; competing with essential nutrients; binding to essential hormones; accumulating in organs that produce hormones.”