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Linda Mundorff

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January 2010

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Is Your Make-up Safe?

August 2008
By Dr. Linda Mundorff, MPH,MSN,ND,RN,CNC,CTN

What does diazolindinyl urea, formaldehyde, trocopheryl, acetatestearic acid, methylparaben, lead, mercury, and micronized titanium dioxide all have in common? Give up? Ok I will tell you, but you are not going to like it. They are ingredients found in many cosmetics, facial creams, and shampoos. Most of us rarely think about what we are putting on our faces, after all, it must be safe; the government monitors the processing of these products. The sad truth is the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require companies to test their products prior to placing them on the market. And although many studies have found these chemicals and many others to be found in personal care products, nothing has been done to change it.

As consumers it really is our responsibility to advocate for our families and ourselves. We live in a country that gives us choices, freedom to choose, even if those choices are harmful such as alcohol and cigarette smoking.

The best thing you can do is to arm yourself with knowledge. Check the labels of all products you buy, not just make-up. There are hidden dangers in foods too. Go fragrance-free as many chemicals are used to give a product its distinctive odor. If you have an eye infection, irritation, or cut then, don't use any makeup until it clears up. Many of these chemicals can't harm you unless they can enter the body. Also many of us will keep our make-up for years, thinking it can never go bad. But makeup does go bad; it harbors all kinds of germs, and should be replaced every three to six months. I used to get a lot of styes and couldn't figure out why. It wasn't until I started to replace my mascara more frequently that the stye went away. So now I replace my mascara and lipstick every two months.

For more information visit SafeCosmetics.org. Armed with knowledge you will become a more savvy shopper and consumer!

In health and wellness,

Dr. Linda Mundorff

Disclaimer: Dr. Mundorff is a Board Certified Naturopath, and not a medical doctor. The information in this column is for educational purposes only and should not be used to self-diagnose and treat diseases. Naturopathy is a complementary practice to health care and should be used in conjunction with a competent health care practitioner. Many herbal and homeopathic remedies can actually be contraindicated in many health conditions, with certain prescriptions, and over-the-counter medications. Please consult your physician before starting any alternative modalities.