The perfect shade of lipstick can complete an outfit. We all have a drawer full of our favorite colors for every season, and nothing is better than finishing off an ensemble with a color that suits your complexion. But, some of your favorite brands contain chemicals that can cause hormonal issues and increase your risk of disease. Maybe that drawer-full of colors isn’t so great after all.
All You Need to Know About Your Lipstick
A study, conducted by the EWG, found that more a quarter of all women in the United States use at least 15 cosmetic products daily, many of which contain known carcinogens that are linked to impaired fertility or developmental harm for a baby in the womb or a child.
Understanding where your cosmetics are coming from, and how to avoid the “nasty” ingredients will help you look good, and feel better on a daily basis.
How Lipstick is Made
Ever wondered how it’s actually made or what goes inside? Here’s a quick recap of the most common lipstick manufacturing procedure:
- Pigment milling: the desired pigment, or combination of pigments, are mixed together, joined by oil then ground up into tiny particles. This beginning stage of the process is where the toxic chemicals are combined in order to create the product that you know as lipstick.
- Combination of pigment phase into base wax: the ingredients are mixed in a steam-jacketed kettle equipped with a propeller agitator. After mixing, the liquid is then ground again
- Molding: molding happens at specific temperatures to eliminate unwanted products of fast-cooling. The lipstick is heated to 80 C and poured into vertical split molds that are kept at a temperature of 35 C
- Cooling and Flaming: the resulting lipstick is cooled and extracted from the molds to prepare for flaming, which is the passing of the lipstick over several open flames to melt small layers of gloss (which contains toxic chemicals) around the lipstick. Flaming protects the lipstick from outside air and influences.
The constituents to Avoid in Cosmetics
The law doesn’t require FDA approval before a cosmetic product goes on the market, with the exception of color additives. That means that there are many products in your local pharmacy or supermarket that may contain chemicals that are harmful.
The EWG has created a hazard rating system, with 10 being high toxicity and 1 being mild toxicity. These rating system helps us to see how unsafe the products that we’re putting on our skin actually are.