Stacy Malkan works hard to advocate for toxin-free products.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Toxic ingredients in your everyday beauty products can be extremely dangerous to your health. Recovering and fighting cancer patients are already dealing with fragile immune systems and symptoms of sickness on a daily basis, so why add toxic exposure to the mix?
We were lucky enough to speak with Stacy Malkan on the subject, who showed us new ways to protect ourselves from dangerous products. Ms. Malkan is a former beauty queen turned health advocate, and author and co-founder of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics.
After years of research, Malkan believes that many of the chemicals in personal-care products are not only linked to cancer, but a wide range of disorders including learning disabilities, asthma, birth defects, cancer and infertility. Toxic ingredients are thought to make the battle with cancer even harder on patients. “Toxic products tax the body,” Malkan says. “The body’s elimination and detoxification systems have to work harder to get rid of the toxins.” Try avoiding all unnecessary exposure to toxic chemicals whenever possible, and when in doubt, take Malkan’s advice: “The simpler, the better. Choose products with fewer chemicals, and use fewer products overall. It is also advisable to avoid synthetic fragrances which contain a myriad of unknown chemicals.” (Click here for our list of toxic chemicals to avoid, and here for our list of dangerous chemicals in colognes and perfumes).
In the end, it seems that good old fashioned research is the key to protecting yourself against toxins, so try checking out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database for more information. “It’s important to know that there are no legal standards for terms like ‘hypo-allergenic’ or ‘doctor recommended,'” Malkan explains. “Even ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ personal-care products can legally contain hazardous chemicals.” To protect yourself during recovery, she advises you look beyond marketing claims or ad gimmicks, and search for products with the fewest, most natural ingredients possible. There are many brands that have low toxicity scores in the Cosmetic Database. Some are our personal favorites include Organic Essence, Bath By Bettijo and Garden of Eve.
*How do you protect yourself against toxic products? Please share your ideas, advice and opinions!