A multitude of bad ingredients in lotion can hide behind fancy or complicated names. If you want the best for your skin, though, it is worth familiarizing yourself with the harmful ingredients you should avoid.
What Are Bad Ingredients in Lotion?
As a regular consumer, it is easy to overlook the ingredients list on the backside of your skin care products. After all, you’re likely no expert. But, it is exactly this kind of mentality that can inadvertently lead to unhealthy or damaged skin.
It is important to know what bad ingredients in body lotion are. Make it a habit to check the ingredients list and skip the product if you find any red flags. To do this, you must first understand what ingredients count as harmful. Keep in mind that many of these ingredients can mask themselves using more appealing words, but do not be fooled.
Many body and face lotions contain harmful ingredients yet still claim to be good for your skin. Skin care companies typically use such ingredients because they are the cheaper alternative. These companies, though, don’t always have their customers’ best interest in mind.
Alcohol, Paraffin, Parabens, and Beeswax
Alcohol, paraffin, parabens, and beeswax are some of the most common ingredients in lotion. But, did you know that these three can also be harmful to your skin?
Let’s start with alcohol. While many skin care products use alcohol to facilitate absorption, long-term use or too much alcohol can result in a number of consequences. These include skin dryness or irritation as well as rashes or allergic reactions. Many have also reported a burning or stinging sensation on the skin.
Candles made with paraffin can have a detrimental effect not only on your skin but also on your overall health. Burning paraffin releases hazardous chemicals in the air, irritating your eyes and lungs in the process. It’s especially harmful to those with respiratory conditions.
When paraffin comes in contact with your skin (even if it’s just through the air), it can cause irritation and itching. If you have a dermatological condition, paraffin can make your situation worse.
Parabens come in many different forms (butylparaben, propylparaben, ethylparaben, methylparaben, and the like). These chemicals prevent your moisturizer or lotion from growing fungus or bacteria, but they can actually do more harm than good. Parabens have been linked to breast cancer and hormone imbalance.
There are other ways to prevent the growth of fungus and bacteria in skin care products, such as using citric acid and vitamin E. Though these alternatives won’t give your products a longer lifespan, they are much safer than parabens and just as effective. If you encounter a skin care product that still uses parabens, that company likely doesn’t prioritize the health of its customers.
While generally considered a “natural” ingredient, beeswax isn’t that great for your skin. It’s commonly used in lipsticks and lip balms, but lotions are a different ball game. Beeswax is an impermeable oil. When you apply it to your skin, it results in a coating of sorts, and the skin does not absorb it. It, therefore, isn’t very breathable.
Many people are also against the use of beeswax because of its negative impact on the environment. The process of making and harvesting beeswax on a factory scale is harmful to bees, in particular. Therefore, products that use beeswax are not considered cruelty-free.
Other Bad Ingredients in Lotion
Apart from alcohol, paraffin, parabens, and beeswax, other harmful ingredients in lotion are as follows:
Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA)
Butylated Hydroxyanisole, otherwise known as BHA, is a preservative commonly found in body lotions. It’s used as a stabilizer as well, but it can interfere with your endocrine system and the way it functions. Additionally, some consider it to be a human carcinogen.
The name itself sounds suspicious enough. DMDM Hydantoin is a common preservative used in the skin care industry. It releases formaldehyde, which is a carcinogen. This ingredient can irritate both your skin and eyes.
Methylisothiazolinone or MIT is also a preservative commonly used in body lotion. Companies favor this ingredient because of its effectiveness and cheap cost. But, MIT is a strong irritant that can cause allergic reactions as well as contact dermatitis. In some cases, it can even lead to nerve damage.
You might be surprised to find mineral oil on this list, but anyone even remotely familiar with bad ingredients in lotion will know why. Mineral oil is a popular ingredient in skin care products, preferred by manufacturers because of its low cost, accessibility, and long shelf life. You may find mineral oil listed as petrolatum or petroleum jelly.
However, despite its supposedly moisturizing effects, mineral oil can be harmful to your skin. Improperly purified mineral oil can contain traces of PAHs, which are carcinogenic. Some have even found this ingredient to be an endocrine disruptor.
By now, you already know that parabens are bad for your health. But, many companies label their products as “paraben-free” only to use phenoxyethanol instead.
Phenoxyethanol serves the same purpose as parabens — to prevent the growth of bacteria and fungus. However, this ingredient can irritate your skin and lead to allergic reactions. If you’re susceptible to or already have skin conditions like eczema, phenoxyethanol can exacerbate your condition.
Retinyl Palmitate is a vitamin A derivative that usually exists in body lotions, creams, and sunscreen. Companies use this ingredient because of its supposed anti-aging effects. But, studies have shown that exposure to sunlight after applying retinyl palmitate can result in rapid tumor development.
Triethanolamine is widely used in the cosmetic and skin care industry, most notably in mascara and body lotion. But, studies have found that long-term exposure to this ingredient can irritate your skin, disrupt your respiratory system, and affect your immune system. Animal studies have also shown its link to cancer.
One Step Closer to Healthy Skin
As you can see, there are many bad ingredients in lotion masquerading themselves as “moisturizing” or “healthy.” If you take a closer look, though, a lot of these ingredients pose dangers to your skin and overall health. Know what these harmful products are. And if you see products that contain these ingredients on the shelf, move right along.
Fairy Secrets only uses all-natural ingredients. Our lotion candles do not contain alcohol, paraffin, parabens, or beeswax. Moisturize your skin the healthy way using our soothing lotion candles that come in a variety of scents!