Welcome to part 3 in our series on the harmful ingredients in our skin care products and makeup. We have all been conditioned by advertising to just accept that the products on sale are good for us and not harmful in anyway. Advertising is an amazing tool and we just do not question it and assume that companies have our best interests at heart. Are they selling us down the river in the name of profit and taking shortcuts at the expense of our health. Research on the ingredients in everyday products seem to suggest that many hold health risks that should concern us. Today’s topic is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is used in various skincare products such as body washes, cleansers, shampoos and hand washes and acts as a detergent.
There are also other types of sulfates including Ammonium Laurel Sulfate (ALS). Sulfates are the ingredients which make a product foam up and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is the most commonly used.
SLS can cause allergic reactions, drying of the skin and irritation in some people and can have a lasting effect on the epidermis of the skin by damaging the hair follicles. It was thought to be carcinogenic but this is unsubstantiated. For more information and treatment for reactions visit https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/3423265#section=Human-Toxicity-Excerpts
Sodium Laureth Sulfate
Depending on the manufacturing processes it is possible that sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) may be contaminated with measurable amounts of ethylene oxide and 1,4-dioxane. Ethylene oxide is a known human carcinogen and 1,4-dioxane is a possible human carcinogen. Ethylene oxide can also harm the nervous system and may interfere with human development. 1,4- doesn’t easily degrade and can remain in the environment long after it is rinsed down the shower drain. It can be removed from cosmetics during the manufacturing process by vacuum stripping, but there is no easy way of knowing whether SLS has undergone this process. Sodium laureth sulfate( SLES) is used in cosmetics as a detergent and also to make products bubble and foam. It is common in shampoos, shower gels and facial cleansers. It is also found in household cleaning products, like dish soap. For more information visit https://davidsuzuki.org/queen-of-green/dirty-dozen-sodium-laureth-sulfate/
While natural products do not lather as much as commercial ones it is a much safer option for you and your family. With so many long term health problems caused by these toxins going natural is the best option to take.