The Toxic Ten

I want to share with you the Environmental Defence’s Toxic Ten List, a list of the top ten toxic ingredients to avoid in your personal care products.

Found in sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), a chemical used in products that lather, like shampoo, toothpaste and body wash. SLES can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane during the manufacturing process. Skin irritant and probable carcinogen.

Artificial musks
Nitromusks such as musk xylene, musk ketone
Found in some products that contain fragrance or perfume, various hair products, moisturizers and cosmetics (even those labelled “unscented”). Endocrine disruptors and potential environmental contaminants dues to bioaccumulation.

Coal tar derived colours
P-phenylenediamine (PPD)
Found in hair dye. Allergens, neurotoxins and possible carcinogens.

Butylated hydroxyanisole, butylated hydroxytoluene
Found in moisturizers, makeup and some fragrances. Allergens, developmental toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Formaldehyde releasing agents
Quaternium-15, DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine and sodium hydroxymethylglycinate
Found in various hair products, moisturizers and cosmetics. Immune system toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Petroleum jelly
Found in various lip, skin and hair products. Can be contaminated with PAHs which are carcinogens, skin allergens and skin irritants.

Ethylparaben, methylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben
Found in various cosmetics and moisturizers. Allergens, male reproductive toxicants, immune system toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Dibutyl phthalate, DEHP, DEP
Found in nail products and scented products. Allergens, linked to asthma, reproductive and developmental toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Silicone chemicals
Cyclomethicone, cyclotetrasiloxane, cyclopentasiloxane, cyclohexasiloxane
Found in various hair products, moisturizers and cosmetics. Skin irritants and environmental contaminants due to bioaccumulation.

Found in products labelled “antibacterial”, such as antiperspirants/deodorants, cleansers and hand sanitizers. Environmental toxicant and endocrine disruptor.

You can go to to download a personal care products pocket shopping guide, find safer alternatives and sign the Just Beautiful petition asking the beauty industry to keep toxic chemicals out of our products.

This entry was posted in Toxins.