There are so many unknown chemicals today that we use in our home and many names I can’t even pronounce or decipher if they are good or bad. I do feel that as consumers we are not being protected as much as we think. I feel strongly that with children in the home I need to spend time researching the best for them. I have always tried to ensure that I read labels of most products that come into the home – this is tough but I assure once you start this project you will be shocked at how many chemicals are in the home. I will also show you some cleaning alternatives that we use at home.
Here are some chemicals that I look out for. There are many more chemicals on the hit list but it can be confusing but here are some major ones that I started to focus on first.
#Formaldehyde – found in shampoos, keratin hair straighteners, hairgels, and eyelash glues and some body washes, cleaning products that kill 100% of bacteria.
So what is it? This is a chemical preservative to stop the growth of bacteria, and this oddly straightens the hair making it silky smooth.
Why is it bad? Formaldehyde can cause cancers after repeated exposure to the chemical, and can be known to trigger allergic reactions, rashes, nosebleeds, asthma and other medical issues. Also by eliminating all bacteria you create some strands that become more resilient – hospitals are now as a result facing issues of the superbugs.
#Sodium lauryl or sodium laureth sulfate (SLS) – found in children’s bath products and also in adult bath products.
So what is it? This is a silly ingredient added just to make your kids’ bath or shampoos more foamy.
Why is it bad? When these chemicals are manufactured, the release a toxic bi-product called 1.4-dioxane. This chemical easily penetrates through the skin, and can cause cancer and birth defects. It may also be toxic to other organs like the kidneys, neurological system and respiratory system.
#Mercury – can be found in some children’s face paints and mascara
So what is it? It is a preservative to stop the growth of bacteria
Why is it bad? It is a well-known neurotoxin that can cause reactions on the skin and it is easily absorbed by the body and it gets accumulated in the body. The FDA in the US allows it eye make-up in very small amounts if no better alternatives can be found – which is a loophole. So make sure your brand of makeup manufactured in the US doesn’t fall into this category.
#Lead – found in lipsticks and some children’s face paints
So what is it? Lead and other heavy metals like cadmium and nickel are contaminants (which naturall occur in some pigments). The FDA tested 400 lipsticks in 2010 and detectable levels were found in all them.
Why is it bad? It is another well-known neurotoxin which can effect learning delays, autism and other neurological problems for babies. If you are pregnant, be cautious of the lead content. There is no safe level of lead exposure.
To find some alternative cleaning solutions click here.
To find out more information, Google can be a good source but also, Jessica Alba’s The Honest Life, and Healthy Child and Healthy World by Christopher Gavin are great reads for parents.