With Mother’s Day right around the corner, we thought it’d be fitting to talk about how your makeup and skincare routine can effect you and your baby’s health. What a lot of expecting mothers don’t realize is that what you put on your skin is just as important as the foods you eat.
Generally when you think about having a baby, changing up your makeup routine isn’t high on your priority list. There are the obvious questions: Am I really capable of giving up alcohol for a year? What am I going to do without sushi? You know, the important stuff. So where does my beauty routine come in, you ask? The truth is, there are all sorts of chemicals in our beauty products that pregnant woman, in particular, should be concerned about. Contrary to popular belief, when we apply products to our skin, they don’t just sit there and make us look pretty. The skin is the largest organ of the body, which means these products are absorbed into the bloodstream and have the ability to cause a variety of pregnancy-related problems, including birth defects and miscarriage. I know. I couldn’t believe it either!
That being said, in order to remain safe and toxin-free, pregnant women should be mindful of the ingredients in their beauty products.
Come again?…You’re telling me cosmetics can have what effect on my baby?
Here are some ingredients to beware of
- Parabens (sometimes labeled as methylparaben or propylparaben) are often used as makeup preservatives and have been linked to birth defects, reproductive problems and miscarriage. Eek!
- Formaldehyde (also called hydroxymethylglycinate, methenesmine and DMDM-hydantoin) is another skincare preservative that can cause breastfeeding babies to experience allergies and allergic reactions.
- Diazolidinyl urea, phenylmercuric salts, acetate and nitrate are all compounds of mercury that have been found in mascara. (Are your eyes starting to hurt now too?)
- Oral retinoids (including Retin-A, Tazorac, Differin, retinol and retinyl) are used to fight wrinkles, but have been known to cause birth defects as well.
- Phthalates (also referred to as diethyl phthalate) are chemicals used to help cosmetic fragrances stick to your skin and have been responsible for altering hormone levels–as if there weren’t enough mood swings to deal with already.
- Petroleum-based products (otherwise known as crude oil, propylene glycol, mineral oil, paraffin, isopropyl alcohol and petrolatum) are used to lock moisture against the body, but can also irritate sensitive baby skin.
- Artificial colors (especially Red 28 Lake Aluminum, Acid Yellow 23 Lake Aluminum and CI 75470) may give off a nice pigment, but are believed to be toxic. In fact, traces of lead have been found in some red lipsticks (sorry ladies!)
I know what you’re thinking. How can the beauty industry get away with this? Well, it turns out that there are very few regulations on personal care products in the United States. Other countries are actually much stricter when it comes to cosmetics. To put things into perspective, approximately 1,300 cosmetics have been banned from The European Union over the years, whereas the FDA has banned only 11 in the U.S. On top of that, a number of U.S.-based skincare companies modify their ingredients in order to sell them to other countries with stricter guidelines.
Now, the obvious solution here would be to read product labels to figure out if any of these chemicals are used in your cosmetics. And, I’d agree that that’s a great place to start. However, cosmetics companies in the U.S. aren’t required to report all of the ingredients on their labels. So, many of the chemicals listed above could very well be in your makeup, but you’d never know!
How can the beauty industry get away with this?
It’s pretty outrageous. So I highly recommend using clean beauty products for all of your makeup and skincare needs. These products are free of toxins and made without harmful ingredients or animal byproducts. Clean beauty brands may also offer vegan and natural options, like we do.
I realize this can be daunting at first, but plant-based beauty products are just as glamorous and effective (if not more so) than chemical-based ones. I mean, you might like applying a byproduct of crude oil to your face every day, but it’s just not my thing.
Most importantly, we’re talking about doing what’s best for you and your child. Is it really worth risking your baby’s life to wear artificially-colored lipstick?
Luckily, we’re here to make things easier for you. We’ve thought ahead and taken all of the junk out of our makeup and skincare assortment. Don’t worry about reading labels or determining whether or not ingredients have been left out. At Hush + Dotti, we can ensure that our products are toxin-free, vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, organic, all natural and safe for you and your baby. We want to make your pregnancy as easy for you as possible, which is why we offer quality products that make you feel and look great.