Archive for March, 2012

Toxicity Report

Upon starting the bodywork log, I never realized how much of a routine that I abided by on a daily basis.  Without even thinking, I wake up every morning and brush my teeth and use mouthwash, and depending on how late I wake up I take a shower.  Something I learned from doing a bodywork log was how forgetful I can be sometimes.  I would sit down at the end of the day and record my findings and realize that I completely forgot to put on deodorant that day.  The bodywork log was a good way to understand how much product I use every day and how not everything I use is completely healthy.

 

In Depth Analysis of Sensodyne Iso-Active Toothpaste, Multi-Action

Sensodyne Iso-Active Toothpaste poses a few threats on the human body, something shocking to learn because I use it every single day.  The chart found on EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database shows that the overall hazard of using the toothpaste is moderate, with a score between low and moderate for cancer.  The developmental and reproductive toxicity is about the same as cancer.  It scored above moderate on allergies and immunotoxicity and a little above developmental and reproductive toxicity from use reactions.  On a short term level, it may result in irritation to the skin eyes and lungs.

Off the packaging, the active ingredients are Potassium Nitrate (5%) (Antihypersensitivity), Sodium Fluoride (0.15% w/v Fluoride Ion) (Anticavity)Inactive Ingredients: Carrageenan Gum, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, FD&C Blue 1, Flavor, Glycerin, Hydrated Silica, Isopentane, PEG 6, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Sodium Saccharin, Sorbitol, Water, Xanthan Gum.  The packaging also says that, “WarningsIf pain/sensitivity still persists after 4 weeks of use, please visit your dentist. Stop use and ask a dentist if the problem persists or worsens. Sensitive teeth may indicate a serious problem that may need prompt care by a dentist. Flammable. Contents under pressure. Do not puncture or incinerate. Do not store at temperature above 120°. Use only as directed. Intentional misuse by deliberately concentrating and inhaling the contents can be harmful or fatal. Keep out of reach of children under 6 years of age. If you accidentally swallow more than used for brushing, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Central right away.”

According to EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database, PEG-6 may lead to organ system toxicity, and hold contamination concerns.  The sodium fluoride found in the toothpaste may lead to cancer, developmental/reproductive toxicity, neurotoxicity, organ system toxicity, and multiple exposures may irritate the skin eyes or lungs.  Sodium Saccharin holds cancer concerns as well as multiople, additive expouser sources. Other ingredients like FD&C Blue 1 and Hydrated Silca lead to cancer concerns.

Sensodyne is owned by GlaxoSmithKline, a company whos mission statement is “We have a challenging and inspiring mission to improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer” according to their website.  I was unable to find where Sensodyne is produced, or its affects on the communities/workers.  According to GlaxoSmithKlines website, “GSK is committed to integrating environmental sustainability into our business.  We have a responsibility to contribute to meeting environmental challenges, but we also see this as an opportunity.”

 

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My Toxic Face Wash

Body Log Table –> Body Log Table

Products that I used during the Body Log

  1. Neutrogena Blackhead Scrub
  2. Dove Deodorant
  3. Neutrogena Oil-Free acne Wash
  4. Bare Minerals Powder Foundation
  5. Bad Gal Eye Mascara
  6. Neutrogena Eyeliner
  7. Giant Brand Nail Polish Remover
  8. Crest with Scope Whitening toothpaste
  9. Scope mouthwash
  10. Vaseline Petroleum Jelly
  11. Burt’s Bee’s Medicated Chapstick
  12. “Fresh” Perfume
  13. Aveeno Oil-free Face Moisturizer
  14. Neutrogena Makeup Removing Pads
  15. Vaseline Shea Butter Body Moisturizer
  16. Purell Active Hand Sanitzer
  17. Assorted Anti-Bacterial Hand Soaps (Bathrooms around campus)

RESPONSE TO MY BODY LOG:

I was personally not surprised at how consistently I used my products because I have used the same products for years now because of the sensitive nature of my skin and body to new products. So, going into the log I knew that I wouldn’t drift from my normal routine. However, the aspect that most surprised me was, after the log was finished, and I was reviewing how often I used each item, I found that a majority of the products were not “necessary” for my survival. For example, I could live without my “Bad Gal” eye mascara, but because I have grown up religiously reading magazines with beauty tips that have told me that my eyelashes aren’t lengthy or dark enough to look “beautiful” I have to manipulate them with makeup. This type of foolery within our society has made us, girls especially, believe that these “unnecessary” products to our survival have become essential. Guilty as charged. I cannot imagine what I would do without my powder foundation or my $15 bottle of shampoo. Reflecting back on this need for my products that I use the most, I have found that this sick addiction to our products have gotten in the way of what we most need for our survival, and not what society has placed upon us to think is necessary for acceptance.

Poison, ahem, “Product” of choice…

Neutrogena Blackhead Eliminating Scrub

Known carcinogens:

• Salicylic Acid

• Iron Oxides

• Polyethylene

All in all my product placed lower on the risk scale for the known carcinogens within the scrub. This was partially because of the neutrality of the salicylic acids and the oxides and their chemistry within the product. However… the

Development/ Reproductive toxicity was quite high because of the… Disodium EDTA or…

• EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid) is a chelating agent, used to sequester and decrease the reactivity of metal ions that may be present in a product.

HISTORY OF EDTA

• Alfred Werner (1893) developed chelating agents, which in 1913, earned him a Nobel Prize

• ORIGIN: Starting in the 1920’s, many new materials such as paints were introduced, and in their manufacturing the elimination of heavy metal contamination was crucial. Citric acid was found to be helpful, but in the mid 1930’s Germany was motivated to develop its own chelating material and not be dependent on importing citric acid. The synthetic substance they invented was EDTA (Ethylene-diamine-tetra-acetate).

(http://www.cardiorenew.com/history.php)

Environmental Concerns of Disodium EDTA

• Has emerged as a consistent organic pollutant

• It degrades to ethylenediaminetriacetic acid, which then cyclizes to the diketopiperizide, a cumulative, persistent, organic environmental pollutant.

• In the New Zealand dairy industry, EDTA has been used as an additive alongside caustic agents to improve cleaning efficiency within dairy processing plants and to minimize dairy wastewater discharge into the environment. There are two main disposal methods of dairy wastes; direct discharge into the local stream after treatment, and spray irrigation onto pasture land. (http://researchcommons.waikato.ac.nz/handle/10289/3284)

Known Occupational Hazards

  • Exposure to Titanium Dioxide (in small doses in the workplace)

The titanium dioxide has been found to be a carcinogen through several studies with the use of lab rats between 1985 and 2004.

a Titanium Dioxide Chemical Factory in China

 

Resources I used:

  1. http://www.cardiorenew.com/history.php
  2. http://researchcommons.waikato.ac.nz/handle/10289/3284

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Toxicity Report & Reflections

I am surprised by the amount of products I used.  My total number of applications (both initial and daily application of products) was higher than I would have guessed.  I don’t feel as if I apply or utilize cosmetic products as much as most women.  During this period of time I showered only twice, and did not apply cosmetics every day.  I feel that my cosmetic usage is governed by somewhat by age and social class.  The social environment at Dickinson almost mandates that women wear cosmetics and upkeep appearances.  I feel as if this expectation is governed by gender and more importantly by the social dynamics of Dickinson as an expensive, definitively classed and predominately homogenous racial make-up.  At Dickinson, our liberal arts education socializes us to expect and want certain jobs in society, predominantly in middle to upper class society.  Most of these jobs require women to look professional and appropriate by societal standards.  This more often than not, includes the use of cosmetics that may or may not act as neurotoxins, immunotoxins, irritants, and allergy inducers and carcinogens.  These products are not necessary for survival or even necessary to earn a living.  In fact, it is absolutely possible for a woman to use no cosmetic, hygienic or health products and be a perfectly competent employee.  These products in no way enhance the job performance of a woman, yet they great affect her ability to attain a job.  Women, especially in comparison to men, are judged physically when in acquisition for a job.  Thus, in short cosmetics, hygienic and health products are not necessary to attain a job or to perform a job competently.  Cosmetics become important, if not necessary in the acquisition of a job that a Dickinson education socializes individuals to believe is appropriate.  These jobs are often related to high pay and a level of conformity to societal standards.  Thus, cosmetics within the context of socialization into class become normalized in women at Dickinson.  Kang brings this into her discussion in The Managed Hand when she discusses the “third shift”.  She goes on to explain that in addition to having a job and rearing children a woman is expected to look physically attractive through preening and primping.

The risk associated with the use of these cosmetics and products is indirect.  Some of the products I use have the potential to biomagnify and bioaccumulate within my young.  In addition, some products are persistent in the environment.  The characteristics of these products make them risks for women and their young.  In addition, the persistence of these products can leave future generations with the problem of environmentally remediating natural resources damaged by these products.  Within the context of cosmetic use within Dickinson the risk is both increased and compensated by this process.  The risk is heightened with product use, but in turn because women who adhere to societal norms of beauty within a working context are more apt to have upward social mobility and earn more.  This means that these women will have access to health care, a safe living environmental and healthy diet.  These factors may compensate for some of the environmental burden brought on by the use of these products.

I researched my blush- Clinque Blushing Blush Powder – Aglow.  This product is made by Clinique which is non-compliant to the Compact for Safe Cosmetics.  Overall, this product poses a moderate hazard with the Environmental Working Group rating it as a 6.  It further classifies this product as between a moderate and high risk for overall hazards.  It poses a moderate cancer, reproductive and developmental risk to those who apply it.  In addition, it puts those who use it at a moderate risk to increased allergies and immunotoxicity.  High concerns of this product are neurotoxicity, persistence and bioaccumulation, organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), multiple, additive exposure sources, occupational hazards.  The ingredient that poses the highest threat to health is that of ACID YELLOW 23 ALUMINUM LAKE/FDC YELLOW #5-ALUMINUM LAKE.  The Toxic Release Inventory defines this substance as:  an insoluble pigment composed of the aluminum salt of AcidYellow 23.  It is often used in cosmetics as a dye, but is a known human neurotoxin.

Time Date Product Type Product Name Product Name
5:28 pm Tuesday Hygeine Glycerin Soap Green Devil Hand Soap
6:39 pm Tuesday Hygeine Shampoo Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Shampoo
6:42 pm Tuesday Hygeine Conditioner Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Conditioner
6:42 pm Tuesday Hygeine Soap Dove Sensitive Skin Unscented Beauty Bar
6:50 pm Tuesday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
6:55 pm Tuesday Beauty Foundation Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse -Natural Ivory
6:57 pm Tuesday Beauty Blush Clinique Blushing Blush Powder Blush – Aglow
6:58 pm Tuesday Beauty Mascara Clinique High Lengths Mascara – Black
11:30 pm Tuesday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
Total Cosmetic Applications: 9
7:00 am Wednesday Hygeine Contact Solution Bausch & Lomb Sensitive Eyes Plus Saline Solution
7:00 am Wednesday Beauty Makeup Remover Clinique Take Off the Day Makeup Remover
7:05 am Wednesday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
7:20 am Wednesday Hygeine Deodorant Lady Speed Stick – Shower Fresh
7:22 am Wednesday Beauty Mascara Clinique High Lengths Mascara – Black
10:30 am Wednesday Beauty Lipstick Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick -Matte Really Red
10:32 am Wednesday Beauty Liquid Eyeliner Maybelline Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner – Black
10:34 am Wednesday Beauty Foundation Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse -Natural Ivory
10:35 am Wednesday Beauty Bronzer Physician’s Formula Ultra Smoothing Bronzer – Light
10:35 am Wednesday Beauty Blush Clinique Blushing Blush Powder Blush – Aglow
10:45 am Wednesday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
3:00 pm Wednesday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
11:00 pm Wednesday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
Total Cosmetic Applications: 13
8:10 am Thursday Beauty Make-Up Remover Clinique Take Off the Day Makeup Remover
8:12 am Thursday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
8:13 am Thursday Hygeine Deodorant Lady Speed Stick – Shower Fresh
8:15 am Thursday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
9:00 am Thursday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
9:45 am Thursday Beauty Makeup Remover Clinique Take Off the Day Makeup Remover
9:46 am Thursday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
10:20 am Thursday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
12:30 pm Thursday Hygeine Shampoo Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Shampoo
12:30 pm Thursday Hygeine Soap Dove Sensitive Skin Unscented Beauty Bar
12:31 pm Thursday Hygeine Exfoliating Scrub Clinique 7-Day Scrub Cream
12:32 pm Thursday Hygeine Conditioner Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Conditioner
12:35 pm Thursday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
12:36 pm Thursday Beauty Foundation Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse -Natural Ivory
12:37 pm Thursday Beauty Bronzer Physician’s Formula Ultra Smoothing Bronzer – Light
12:37 pm Thursday Beauty Blush Clinique Blushing Blush Powder Blush – Aglow
12:28 pm Thursday Beauty Liquid Eyeliner Maybelline Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner – Black
12:29 pm Thursday Beauty Mascara Clinique High Lengths Mascara – Black
7:00 pm Thursday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
10:30 pm Thursday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
Total Cosmetic Applications: 20
8:00 am Friday Beauty Makeup Remover Clinique Take Off the Day Makeup Remover
8:05 am Friday Beauty Lotion Johnson & Johnson Deep Hydrating Skin Lotion
8:07 am Friday Hygeine Deodorant Lady Speed Stick – Shower Fresh
8:07 am Friday Hygeine Toothpaste Colgate Total Advanced Clean Plus Whitening
9:00 am Friday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
11:00 am Friday Beauty Chapstick Vasoline Aloe Vera and Petroleum Jelly Lip Therapy
Total Cosmetic Applications: 6

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Toxicity Report 2012

Toxicity Report 2012

 

Date Time Product Type Product Product Name
6-Mar 6:37 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
11:47 PM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White
7-Mar 9:08 AM Health Contact Lenses Acuvue: 1-Day Moist
9:10 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White
9:12 AM Hygiene Deodorant Axe Dry
1:15 PM Hygiene Shampoo Head and Shoulders
1:19 PM Hygiene Body Wash Gillette Skin Hydrator
1:26 PM Hygiene Deodorant Axe Dry
6:23 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
11:34 PM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White
8-Mar 9:06 AM Health Contact Lenses Acuvue: 1-Day Moist
9:10 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White
9:13 AM Hygiene Deodorant Axe Dry
11:28 AM Hygiene Shampoo Head and Shoulders
11:31 AM Hygiene Body Wash Gillette Skin Hydrator
12:03 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
6:12 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
11:12 PM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White
9-Mar 9:13 AM Health Contact Lenses Acuvue: 1-Day Moist
9:17 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest: 3D White

 

 

After tracking all of the products I use on my body for several days, my first reaction to my toxicity report was “that’s it…?!”.  Identifying myself as a guy, I use a minimal amount of beauty products as compared to most girls in our class.  All of the products that I use from a day-to-day basis are considered to be “hygiene” products, while only my contact lenses fall under the product type of “health”.  I feel like I am lucky in being a guy because looking at my routine in the morning (i.e. waking up, putting my contacts in, brushing my teeth, and putting deodorant) takes only a couple of minutes while girls in our class take some serious time out of their mornings to put on make up products.  I am confused, being a guy, why girls and women across the world would continue to use unnatural, toxic make up products on their bodies; having learned about how bad nail salons are a few weeks ago, why do people still continue to go to them to get their finger or toe-nails painted?  I guess this isn’t a question for just one person in our class, but I am just confused why women are more fashionable (if you will) than men are.  Why do we see women using make up products and beauty products more often than men?

Analysis of Purell: Instant Hand Sanitizer:

Purell is a hand sanitizer that is advertised to kill “99.99 percent” of most common germs within 15 seconds of being used.  Purell was invented in 1988 by Gojo Industries and is proudly produced in the United States of America.  At first, Purell made its niche in the market by marketing Purell “to meet the needs of healthcare providers and restaurant operators looking for ways to reduce the spread of germs”.  In 1997 Purell Instant Hand Sanitizer was introduced to the market.  Nowadays, Purell is used by basically everyone.  It can be found in bathrooms around campus, in the cafeteria, and can even be found in the library.

The popularity and abundance of Purell throughout the world is the reason why I chose to write about this product.  I have heard rumors that Purell is “bad for your immune system” from friends and family, but haven’t yet gotten around to do the research and either prove or disprove that rumor.

Skin Deep gave Purell just below moderate in terms of overall hazard.  For allergies and immunotoxicity, Skin Deep gave Purell in the middle of moderate in high in terms of the risk.  The top ingredient that deserves the most attention as suggested by Skin Deep is the fragrance, as neurotoxicity, allergies, and immunotoxicity are the biggest concern; Skin Deep gave this ingredient an eight out of ten.  This “fragrance” could also be hazardous as the ingredient is not fully labeled, thus the identity of the substance is unknown.  Other the fragrance, fortunately there aren’t very many hazardous ingredients.

In the short-term Purell will not have an impact on my body if I continue to use it once a day at the very most.  In the long-term if I were to increase my use of Purell, I would be increasing my contact with certain toxic pollutants found in Purell.  The only short or long term risk would be accidental ingestion, as Purell has been observed to make people inebriated, alcohol poisioning.

All that having been said, I do not expect to quit using Purell anytime soon.  The little amount that I do use Purell, in my opinion, validates my use of the product once or twice a day.  I abide by the instructions whenever using Purell and use about a dime sized portion of Purell.  Some hazards and risks that I have heard of have included rubbing your eyes shortly after the application of Purell and the ethanol burning your eyes, but after further research did not find any conclusive data proving that Purell weakens your immune system.  It is FDA approved and according to their website, Purell is even tested on animals before humans.

 

http://www.purell.com/about-us/about-purell.aspx

http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/product/239055/Purell_Instant_Hand_Sanitizer%2C_Original/

 

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Body Work Tracking

Examining my Body Work chart, I use pretty much the same products most days. I feel that this is probably pretty standard for a college student male of my age. Perhaps someone of lower class might do away with the contact lenses and stick with glasses, but apart from that I feel that most people in the United States use at least this many products regularly, if not daily. In an economically disadvantaged country, perhaps there would be no contact lenses or deodorant or chapstick. Perhaps these products would be used with much less regularity. As a man, I use hygiene products somewhat less often than many women are socialized to. Men’s bodies are not subject to nearly the same degree of scrutiny that women’s are. Without the same emphasis on physical beauty, I’ve never felt the same pressure many women face to use make-up. However, societal standards dictate that I maintain a certain standard of cleanliness and attractiveness each day, so I use these products almost every day.

 

Time

Date

Product Type

Product Name

Brand Name

11:10 pm

Tuesday

Health

Contact Solution

Opti-Free Replenish

11:12 pm

Tuesday

Hygiene

Toothpaste

Crest Cavity Protection

7:30 am

Wednesday

Hygiene

Hand Soap

Ivory

7:31 am

Wednesday

Health

Contact Solution

Opti-Free Replenish

7:33 am

Wednesday

Hygiene

Toothpaste

Crest Cavity Protection

7:37 am

Wednesday

Hygiene

Deodorant

Old Spice High Endurance

7:38 am

Wednesday

Beauty

Chapstick

Burt’s Beeswax Lip Balm

2:07 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Hand Soap

Ivory

2:08 am

Thursday

Health

Contact Solution

Opti-Free Replenish

2:09 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Toothpaste

Crest Cavity Protection

2:15 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Shampoo

Head & Shoulders

2:19 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Bar Soap

Dial

 10:00 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Hand Soap

Ivory

10:01 am

Thursday

Health

Contact Solution

Opti-Free Replenish

10:03 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Toothpaste

Crest Cavity Protection

10:07 am

Thursday

Hygiene

Deodorant

Old Spice High Endurance

10:10 am

Thursday

Beauty

Chapstick

Burt’s Beeswax Lip Balm

12:10 am

Friday

Hygiene

Hand Soap

Ivory

12:11 am

Friday

Health

Contact Solution

Opti-Free Replenish

12:14 am

Friday

Hygiene

Toothpaste

Crest Cavity Protection

7:45 am

Friday

Hygiene

Deodorant

Old Spice High Endurance

 

For my toxicity report, I chose my Old Spice deodorant stick as a product to examine. Given the successful and popular marketing of Old Spice, I was curious as to how toxic it was. Mostly, it appears, this deodorant stick is harmless. One ingredient stands out from the rest: fragrance. Fragrance is apparently used in over 10,000 products, and consists of a cocktail of innumerable chemicals. The exact chemical makeup of fragrance is considered a trade secret, so companies never share what chemicals they use to mix it. However, it contains a possible range of toxins, many of which are troubling. One such toxin is a sensitizer, which may cause immune system damage and cause people to become sensitized to the ingredient with an allergic reaction to follow every time they encounter it. They can also trigger asthma attacks. Another possible chemical is pthalates. Pthalates (such as diethyl pthalates or DEP, which is widely used in fragrance) are known endocrine disruptors, and may cause problems with development or fertility. Pthalates are also quite common, found in 97% of American citizens tested by the CDC. Banned in Europe, pthalates still make their rounds among Americans disguised under the label of fragrance. Finally, there is moderate evidence to suggest that fragrance is also a neurotoxin, but further research in that area has not been done. For a chemical cocktail that is so widely used in hygiene products, fragrance is a shockingly dangerous one. Petitions to release the composition of fragrance have largely been ignored by the FDA and corporations have continued to hide whatever they please in this potent cocktail. I cannot say that I’ll stop using my deodorant because, well, fragrance is also in everything else. Ideally the government would make an attempt to regulate this harmful chemical in a manner similar to Europe, so as to avoid such widespread exposure.

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Toxicity Report

For this assignment, I tracked all the health and beauty products I used from March 6th to March 9th. The results are shown in the following table: cos report[1]

I was not really surprised by the hygine products I used but I was surprised by all the makup I used. Never thought of myself as a person that used an excesive amount of makeup. But when I wrote it all down it seemd like so much. I’m typically comfortable going on without makeup and I don’t always use all the products that I recorded in that table. But even I don’t use them all every day, I still use them. Also I know I have even more makeup at home that I use and I only bring “the essentials” with me to school.

After recoding the products I used, I selected one of the products to do an in deth analysis of the ingredients. The product I choose was my shampoo. I picked this product becasue I know it is marketed as all natural and I was curious to see what its hazard level would be. To evaluate this we used the website http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/.

Nature’s Gate Jojoba Revitalizing Shampoo

Overall Score: 5 – Moderate

Data: Limited

Product type: shampoo

Made by: Nature’s Gate

Cancer: Low to moderate

Developmental and reproductive: none

Allergies and immunotoxicity: moderate to high

Use restrictions: moderate

Other HIGH concerns: Miscellaneous, Multiple, additive exposure sources, Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs), Contamination concerns, Occupational hazards

Other MODERATE concerns: Neurotoxicity, Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

Other LOW concerns: Ecotoxicology, Data gaps, Enhanced skin absorption

Compact for Safe Cosmetics: Innovater Status

Animal testing policy: does not test on animals

I’m glad that the risk associated with this shampoo is only moderate, but I was still surprised it was that high since Natues Gate is usually a highly recomended brand. I expected that a company like this would have all its products have very low risk levels. Still I was glad that the cancer risks were only “Low to moderate” and there were no reproductive concerns. However, the allergies and immunotoxicity conderns were listed as high. In the ingerdients shown below, there are many chemicals that are listed as irritants. Phenoxyethanol, the first chemical listed, has allergy, immunology, irritation, and occupational alerts. However, the concerntration of it allowed in the product is restricted. Also, the amout of it the workers who manufacture it can be exposed to is also restricted. I try to use all natural products when I can, but before this project I never knew of a good way to evaluate the risks of a certain product. I plan on using the Skin Deep database to search for an alternative shampoo/conditioner line that has only low toxicity scores.

Ingredients:

Phenoxyethanol: Allergies/immunotoxicity, Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs), Occupational hazards

Sodium Laureth Sulfate: Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs)

Cocamide DEA: Cancer, Allergies/immunotoxicity, Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive)

Cocamidopropyl Betaine: Allergies/immunotoxicity, Ecotoxicology, Contamination concerns (NITROSAMINES-in the presence of nitrosating agents)

Panthenol: Data gaps

Fragrance: Neurotoxicity, Allergies/immunotoxicity

Butylene Glycol: Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs)

Glyceryl Undecylenate: Enhanced skin absorption

Viola Tricolor (Pansy) Extract: no data

Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate: data gaps

Hordeum Distichon (Barley) Extract: no data

Wheat Amino Acids: no data

Soy Amino Acids: no data

Citric Acid: Use restrictions

Sodium Chloride: innocuous

Water: innocuous

Allantoin: none identified

Arginine: none identified

Serine: none identified

Threonine: none identified

Coffea Arabica (Coffee) Seed Extract: none identified

Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil: none identified

 

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Cosmatology & Toxicity-Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula

I had the impression that the Cosmetics and Toxicology Report would be a breeze. I do not use many products so I began the assignment with a confidence that could not be undermined. What shocked me was how often I use those products. Although I do not use the bathroom often, I am constantly applying lotion to my hands. On the contrary, I was not surprised by this. My skin, especially on my hands, gets very dry so I am constantly apply plying lotion to moisture to them. Because of this, I chose to research in-depth about Palmer’s Cocoa Butter because I apply it more than three times a day.

 

Time Date Product Type Product Brand/Name Product Specifics
5:10pm Tuesday Feminie Care Always Ultra Thin Pad
5:15pm Tuesday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
5:16pm Tuesday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
5:16pm Tuesday Beauty Burt’s Bees Lip balm
5:16pm Tuesday Beauty Vicky Tiel: Sensual Perfume
10:30pm Tuesday Hygine Clean & Clear Cream face wash
10:30pm Tuesday Hygine Crest ProHealth Toothpaste
10:33pm Tuesday Feminie Care Always Ultra Thin Pad
10:33pm Tuesday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
10:37pm Tuesday Beauty Ponds Facial Moisturizer
10:40pm Tuesday Beauty Clean & Clear Spot treatment
10:40pm Tuesday Beauty Burt’s Bees Lip balm
8:55am Wed Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
8:58am Wed Hygine Clean & Clear Cream face wash
9:00am Wed Hygine Crest ProHealth Toothpaste
9:03am Wed Hygine Equate Bodywash Tea Tree Oil Bodywash
9:15am Wed Beauty Ponds Facial Moisturizer
9:16am Wed Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
9:21am Wed Beauty Clean & Clear Spot treatment
9:22am Wed Hygine Lady Speed Stick Deoderant
9:22am Wed Hygine Vicky Tiel: Sensual Perfume
9:22am Wed Femine Care Always Ultra Thin Pad
9:23am Wed Beauty Burt’s Bees Coconut Foot Moisturizer
9:23am Wed Beauty Bebe Eyeliner
9:25am Wed Beauty Maybeline Mascara
12:27pm Wed Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
12:30pm Wed Beauty Walgreens Brand Hand lotion
12:31pm Wed Beauty Burt’s Bees Lip Balm
4:19pm Wed Feminie Care Always Ultra Thin Pad
4:22pm Wed Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
4:25pm Wed Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
4:25pm Wed Beauty Clean & Clear Spot treatment
4:26pm Wed Beauty Vicky Tiel: Sensual Perfume
8:42pm Wed Femine Care Always Ultra Thin Pad
8:46pm Wed Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
 8:49pm Wed Beauty Walgreens Brand Hand lotion
12:10am Thursday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
2:15am Thursday Hygine Clean & Clear Cream face wash
2:16am Thursday Hygine Crest ProHealth Toothpaste
2:10am Thursday Beauty Ponds Facial Moisturizer
2:28am Thursday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
2:30am Thursday Beauty Clean & Clear Spot treatment
8:30am Thursday Hygine Crest ProHealth Toothpaste
8:35am Thursday Hygine Clean & Clear Cream face wash
8:40am Thursday Hygine Lady Speed Stick Deoderant
8:41am Thursday Beauty Ponds Facial Moisturizer
12:40pm Thursday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
12:46pm Thursday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
12:46pm Thursday Beauty Burt’s Bees Lip balm
3:49pm Thursday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
5:53pm Thursday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
3:53pm Thursday Beauty Burt’s Bees Lip balm
5:30pm Thursday Beauty Vicky Tiel: Sensual Perfume
6:00pm Thursday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
12:49am Friday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
12:51am Friday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
12:52am Friday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
8:46am Friday Hygine Clean & Clear Cream face wash
8:50am Friday Hygine Crest ProHealth Toothpaste
8:55am Friday Hygine Equate Bodywash Tea Tree Oil Bodywash
9:06am Friday Beauty Ponds Facial Moisturizer
9:10am Friday Beauty Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Moisturizer
9:13am Friday Hygine Lady Speed Stick Deoderant
9:15am Friday Beauty Vicky Tiel: Sensual Perfume
11:35am Friday Hygine Bathroom Soap Hand soap
11:40am Friday Beauty Walgreens Brand Hand lotion

Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula

Fortunately, the Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey based company; Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula scored 3 out of 10 on EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. I have grown up using this brand of cocoa butter so I am pleased to know that it was a low hazard product. The moisturizer has been manufactured by ET. Brown Drug Co., Inc. The company produced face, hair, and body moisturizer since the mid-nineteenth century and most recently to the current management in 1971. Due to the longevity of the company, its mission has been to provide the best and safest body products for its consumers. The company is in good economic standing and has global contacts in Mexico, Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. All of Palmer’s products are manufactured in the United States although the cocoa seeds from which the body butter is made are harvester in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

 

Cocoa plant seed which cocoa butter is produced.

Although the online database listed the moisturizer to have eight ingredients, my personal bottle listed twenty-four ingredients. Of the twenty-four ingredients listed on my bottle of Palmer’s Coca Butter Formula, half of the ingredients were not translated into non-scientific title. Palmer’s cocoa butter contains very small amounts of toxic substances. EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database was able to isolate the ingredients that caused any overall hazard. The fragrance, or parfum, in the cocoa butter caused the most health hazard as it was rated 8 out of 10. Although the fragrance is listed as its generic name, it represents an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals and ingredients used as fragrance dispersants such as diethyl phthalate. Fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system (EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics).

Diethyl phthalate (DEP) is an organic compound that is known to have a low toxic potential. A toxicology experiment was done on pregnant rats injected with DEP. The study concluded that certain does of DEP caused skeletal deformities and increased toxicity levels of their embryos and fetuses. Through more studies done on rates, DEP has been known to cause androgen, male hormones, to decrease and effect male reproductive development. DEP is found in detergent and aerosol sprays. Children exposed to this have shown premature breast development in girls, higher rates of ADHD symptoms, and childhood social impairment.

Although very little fragrance is included in each bottle of Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula, employs are probably exposed to high does during the manufacturing of the product. Although I could not find information on the E.T. Browne factories and their workers, I assume that they are well protected and compensated. I have reference newspapers and online sources such as the New York Times, Bloomberg, and The Livestrong Foundation to find no negative information about the product and manufacturing procedures. Having completed the research about Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula, I am now an informed consumer about the product that I have used my entire life. For now, I will recommend Palmer’s to my friends as they operate an honest company, give back to underserved children in New York City (my hometown), and distribute a product that truly leaves your skin softer, nourished, and more radiant. With this knowledge, I might try their Olive Oil Formula for my scalp!

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Clean, Clear and Toxic

Rick Bowie

Professor Bartlow

Ecofeminism

March 20st, 2012

 

Cosmetics and Toxicology Report

 

            The first think I noticed though this report was how I use the same products multiple times but rarely do I mix it up. I knew I was a creature of habit but I didn’t not realize how much so until it is on paper. It’s interesting to me to see that I constantly wash with the same products in almost the same order every day. Also, I see that although I do not use multiple different products I do shower pretty often which makes me think about the amount of water I use which affects the environment and also if any of the products that I use are highly toxic I am going to have a very high exposure to them. I have no information on the type of hand sanitizer that is used when people walk into the cafeteria at Dickinson however, I find that I use that from time to time out of instinct and as a quick fix to not washing my hands. Also I found that sometimes I did forget some of the stuff that I used, for example soap when I get done using the bathroom. This is one of the examples I came up with that I had forgotten to chart and I am sure I missed more than that. I also noticed that in the routines that we do every day for cleanliness as much as we don’t notice what we’re using I also don’t realize that I am using as many products as I thought I would. I figured I was a simple guy with only a couple products I used, when in reality the list was a lot longer than I thought and that is not even including the things that I inevitably forgot.

 

 

I wanted to examine the most popular of all of the products that I used which was my face wash. I use the product Clean and Clear Acne Cleanser. There are much more short term impacts on the body rather than long term. It warns to keep away from eyes and mouth and can cause skin irritation. The long term affects mention a small chance for cancer though the ingredient Benzoyl-Peroxide. Overall the product got a rating of a six and was deemed moderately dangerous. Benzoyl-Peroxide was also listed as an endocrine disruptor but looking through that was the main ingredient that has toxins in it. That being said it is also the main ingredient that fights the acne bacteria.

I like so many Americans have become very self-conscious about my skin and growing up I struggled with controlling my acne so I was willing to try anything. Now since I have grown up it has gotten more in control but the ideals of beauty in our society have left scars worse than the acne its self. Even though I read how this product may eventually be harmful to my body it has done a decent job of preventing the acne to show up therefore I want to continue to use it despite the known toxins inside of it. This product was produced by Clean and Clear which is a Johnson and Johnson product. Although Johnson and Johnson has its headquarters in New Jersey it has 250 operating headquarters in 60 countries. Looking at the air quality around the New Jersey area you can see that it is one or the worst air quality areas in the entire country and the production of beauty products like this one defiantly a contributor to the poor air quality.

 

 

 

Although this Clean and Clear product is only slightly toxic there have been many different acne products that have been more toxic and have been very destructive to the reproductive organs of men and women. The pursuit of clear skin has driven many men and women to put extremely dangerous toxins in their body for the need to conform to societal ideals on beauty. That’s what drives all of these beauty products to be used because the short term success of beauty is more important than the long term destruction of the body.

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My Toxic Make-Up Remover

Date Time Product Type Product Name Product Brand
Tuesday 5:05 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
11:00 PM Beauty Cuticule Remover Liquid Sally Hansen
Wednesday 12:11 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
12:14 AM Hygiene Hand Soap Up-and-Up Anti-Bacterial
12:15 AM Hygiene/Beauty Face Wash Mary Kay Timewise
12:18 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
12:20 AM Health/Beauty Face Moisturizer Pond’s
12:22 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
12:28 AM Hygiene/Health Vaseline (lips) Vaseline
12:30 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
8:52 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
8:54 AM Beauty Liquid Foundation Loreal True Match Foundation Sand Beige W5
8:56 AM Beauty Powdered Foundation Loreal True Match Powder Foundation Sun Beige W6
8:57 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
8:59 AM Beauty Bronzer NYC Color Wheel Mosaic Face Powder
9:00 AM Beauty Blush Physician’s Formula Powder Palette Multi-Colored Blush
9:01 AM Beauty Concealer Cover Girl + Olay Simply Ageless Eye Concealer 205
9:02 AM Beauty Concealer Lorac Coverup C5
9:05 AM Beauty Eye Shadow Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Night Sky
9:07 AM Beauty Mascara Cover Girl Last Blast Volume Waterproof Very Black
9:08 AM Beauty Eyeliner CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus Self Sharpening Eye Pencil
9:10 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
9:13 AM Hygiene/Health Contact Solution Opti-Free Replenish Multi-Purpose Disinfecting Solution
9:19 AM Health/Beauty Lotion Vaseline
9:21 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
11:45 AM Hygiene Shampoo and Conditioner Pantene Pro-V 2 in 1 Dry to Moisturized, Medium to Thick
11:52 AM Hygine Body Wash Dove
12:15 PM Beauty Powdered Foundation Loreal True Match Powder Foundation Sun Beige W6
12:16 PM Beauty Concealer Lorac Coverup C5
12:20 PM Beauty Eyeliner CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus Self Sharpening Eye Pencil
2:49 PM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
5:03 PM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
11:55 PM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
11:58 PM Hygiene Hand Soap Up-and-Up Anti-Bacterial
11:59 PM Hygiene/Beauty Face Wash
Thursday 12:02 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
12:04 AM Health/Beauty Face Moisturizer Pond’s
12:06 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
12:28 AM Hygiene/Health Vaseline (lips) Vaseline
12:35 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
8:17 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
8:19 AM Beauty Liquid Foundation Loreal True Match Foundation Sand Beige W5
8:21 AM Beauty Powdered Foundation Loreal True Match Powder Foundation Sun Beige W6
8:23 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
8:25 AM Beauty Bronzer NYC Color Wheel Mosaic Face Powder
8:26 AM Beauty Powdered Blush Physician’s Formula Powder Palette Multi-Colored Blush
8:27 AM Beauty Concealer Cover Girl + Olay Simply Ageless Eye Concealer 205
8:28 AM Beauty Concealer Lorac Coverup C5
8:31 AM Beauty Eye Shadow Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Night Sky
8:33 AM Beauty Mascara Cover Girl Last Blast Volume Waterproof Very Black
8:34 AM Beauty Eyeliner CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus Self Sharpening Eye Pencil
8:36 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
8:39 AM Hygiene/Health Contact Solution Opti-Free Replenish Multi-Purpose Disinfecting Solution
8:41 AM Health/Beauty Lotion Vaseline
8:51 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
12:20 PM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
3:55 PM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
5:00 PM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
5:03 PM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
Friday 1:05 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
1:08 AM Hygiene Hand Soap Up-and-Up Anti-Bacterial
1:09 AM Hygiene/Beauty Face Wash Mary Kay Timewise
1:12 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
1:14 AM Health/Beauty Face Moisturizer Pond’s
1:38 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
1:45 AM Hygiene/Health Vaseline (lips) Vaseline
1:46 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
8:50 AM Hygiene/Beauty Eye Make-Up Remover Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover
8:54 AM Beauty Liquid Foundation Loreal True Match Foundation Sand Beige W5
8:56 AM Beauty Powdered Foundation Loreal True Match Powder Foundation Sun Beige W6
8:57 AM Health Lubricating Eye Drops Systane Long Lasting Lubricant Eye Drops
9:00 AM Beauty Bronzer NYC Color Wheel Mosaic Face Powder
9:01 AM Beauty Powdered Blush Physician’s Formula Powder Palette Multi-Colored Blush
9:03 AM Beauty Concealer Cover Girl + Olay Simply Ageless Eye Concealer 205
9:04 AM Beauty Concealer Lorac Coverup C5
9:06 AM Beauty Eye Shadow Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Night Sky
9:07 AM Beauty Mascara Cover Girl Last Blast Volume Waterproof Very Black
9:08 AM Beauty Eyeliner CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus Self Sharpening Eye Pencil
9:11 AM Hygiene Hand Sanitizer Purell
9:12 AM Hygiene/Health Contact Solution Opti-Free Replenish Multi-Purpose Disinfecting Solution
9:20 AM Health/Beauty Lotion Vaseline
9:22 AM Hygiene Toothpaste Crest Extra Whitenning
11:35 AM Hygiene Shampoo and Conditioner Pantene Pro-V 2 in 1 Dry to Moisturized, Medium to Thick
11:41 AM Hygine Body Wash Dove
11:54 AM Health/Beauty Lotion Vaseline

It is incredible how a process that is so irritating can be so informative. During the last couple days I have tracked my body work, the products that I apply to my body to meet a health, hygiene or beauty need. As you can probably imagine, the process of tracking everything that you use in one day on your own body and the specific time when you used it was incredibly frustrating. However, halfway throughout this process I realized that the source of my frustration was just how often and how many products were included in my own body work.  As I look through my finished list, I can honestly say that I am decently happy with it and that I am not very surprised. Before beginning the process, I was aware that the majority of my body work log was going to consist of my make-up products that I use on a daily basis, which many people may consider “unnecessary.” At first, I was self-conscious for the implications that these products have – I expected people to look at my log and conclude that I was a woman that plastered her face with make-up to cover up some insecurity. Although some people may consider using nine make-up products every day to be excessive, I know I genuinely enjoy the process of putting on make-up, regardless of the beauty need that it may be fulfilling. However, now that I can see exactly how many cosmetics I use and how often I use them, I plan on making an effort to reduce the amounts I apply on my body. I expect that there are a good 30-40% of college women my age that use around the same amount of make-up product that I use, but I believe it varies significantly according to class and income, than any other societal measures. Although women from a higher class than me may use the same amount of product, I expect their brands to be more “high end” such as Bobbi Brown, Clinique, M.A.C., Nars, etc. In result, women in higher classes may have the ability to use more natural and less toxic make-up products on their bodies than I can. Since I use “lesser quality products” or “popular consumer brands,” it is also possible that I am exposed to more toxins and am therefore in a higher level of risk.

 

Neutrogena Make-Up Remover

Since it seems plausible that my “popular brand” products are made up of some toxic ingredients, I decided to investigate the toxicity of my make-up remover, Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Make Up Remover. Keeping my fingers crossed, I began to do research on this product, hoping that at least my make-up remover, which I trust every night to fully remove my make-up off my face, was not toxic.

-DRUMROLL-

Crap, it looks like I’m not that lucky. According to the Cosmetics’ Database, my Neutrogena eye make-up remover is considered to be a “moderate hazard” to my body…just great.  Listed under the products highest health concerns are “neurotoxicity, persistence and bioaccumulation, and irritation of the skin, eyes and lungs;” talk about a scary list! Although the database states that most of these concerns reach only a moderate level, it is clear that there are several ingredients in this product that after a long time of exposure can have very hazardous effects on my face and the rest of my body; among the most harmful are Benzyl Alcohol, Benzalkonium Chloride, and Cyclopentasiloxane. According to the Database, Benzyl Alcohol is a naturally occurring and synthetic ingredient that is frequently used as a solvent and a preservative, although it has several other uses that do not really pertain to my eye make-up remover. Unfortunately, this ingredient has shown strong evidence of human neurotoxicity, is expected to be harmful or toxic to organs in human bodies in Canada, and has shown possible allergic effects in human studies…if that list doesn’t make a girl scared I don’t know what does. Due to the evidence of all these hazardous consequences, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Assessments have recommended the use of this ingredient to be restricted in products, although they somehow determined it to be safe for use in cosmetics under the limitations. Is there something I’m missing here? If this ingredient is moderately toxic in so many ways, why are companies like Neutrogena including it in their products?

 

Benzalkonium Chloride is another sneaky ingredient that is ranked relatively high on the hazard scale, with a rating of 6 out of 10. Although it is not related to neurotoxicity or organ system toxicity, there is very strong evidence of allergies and immunotoxicity. It has been found to be such a powerful immune, skin, and respiratory irritant that Japan has restricted its use in cosmetics and Canada has not only restricted its use but also prohibited it in their cosmetics. What the hell is the U.S. waiting for then? What legitimate reason can they have for allowing this to be in my cosmetics? If these two ingredients don’t scare you enough already, we also have good old Cyclopentasiloxane, a silicon-based cyclic compound used as a skin conditioning agent. Even though this ingredient is ranked lower in the hazard scale, it sounds to me like one of the most potentially dangerous ingredients in my eye-make-up remover. Cyclopentasiloxane is not only a potential neurotoxin, but it is also an endocrine disruptor and is likely an environmental toxin that is known to be persistent and bioaccumulate. The latter characteristics have raised a lot of concern as they are regarded as indicators of truly dangerous toxins, as they will endure throughout time and increase in amounts through levels of the food chain. If this wasn’t terrifying enough, this ingredient is also thought to be a “mild” carcinogen, as one or more animal studies have shown formations of tumors in moderate doses. In other words, I can technically get cancer by using this product…who wouldn’t expect that in their cosmetics, right?

After reading about these different toxins, the only solace I had was the fact that there was only marginal evidence of these ingredients leading to toxicity; even though they can cause cancer and affect your immune system and organs, these would be extreme long term effects after persistent and continuous exposure. However, shouldn’t Neutrogena try to find alternatives for these ingredients instead of distributing them in their products? What were their particular standards for evaluating toxins and were they meeting these standards in all their products? In order to get some answers for these questions, I had to visit the website of Johnson & Johnson Co., who bought Neutrogena in 1994.  As one of America’s largest and most successful multinational pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson has a website that lives up to its status. It is very detailed and transparent in many ways. Although many of us may think of Johnson & Johnson as an American company, it actually has facilities and manufacturers all throughout the world; the list includes Africa, Asia (several countries), Europe (several countries), the Middle East, South American (several countries), and of course the United States (several states). It is possible that my product was created in any of these countries as it is sold worldwide, but it is most probable that it was manufactured here in the United States. Nonetheless, by looking at this impressive list of nations, it is evident that Johnson & Johnson not only reaches a huge public through their products but also has direct effects on its thousands of employees as well on the communities that house their facilities. Recognizing this fact, the company has supposedly gone through great lengths to address the health of its employees by researching the toxicity and other harmful components of the ingredients they use in their products, as well as to create standards for the use of those ingredients and other measures that reduce the occupational hazards for their workforce. On their website under Ingredient Safety, it states, “Our companies are expected to comply with regulations on ingredients in all countries where our products are sold. Wherever authorities have set limits on certain ingredients, we require that our product formulations are within those limits. We also work with regulatory authorities around the world to ensure our ingredients are safe for patients and consumers as well as the environment.” However if this statement is true, why is Neutrogena, a brand under Johnson & Johnson, allowed to use such toxic ingredients in their products? Should they be allowed to use them only because the “product formulations are within the limits?”

 

Johnson & Johnson Headquarters

In terms of workplace safety, the company goes through great lengths to reduce occupational hazards that range from exposure to toxic ingredients and exposure to factors such as factory noise, heat stress, and radiation. They have special toxicology teams that are responsible for setting “acceptable” exposure standards for different chemicals that meet the limitations given by regulatory agencies such as the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), among others. Furthermore, if any chemicals exceed the set standards within the workplace, employees are given the appropriate tools to ensure they are protected. Beginning from 1993, Johnson & Johnson has set environmental goals to reduce toxic emissions and reduce their impacts on the surrounding communities. As a whole, the company has strived to “address our environmental performance, including energy use, carbon dioxide reduction, water use, paper and packaging, waste reduction, product stewardship, environmental literacy, biodiversity, compliance and external manufacturing.” According to the Johnson & Johnson, the majority of its companies was committed to meeting the goals and was able to exceed them. Therefore, although these statements may not truly reflect their day-to-day follow-up on the health of their workers and their communities, the company does seem to take these issues very seriously and are proud of their improvements. However, where does Neutrogena fit into this? Does Johnson & Johnson follow-up with its brands like Neutrogena and ensure that they are abiding by their toxicological and health standards? Hopefully they do, but whether that is the case or not, I believe we can all agree that it might be time for me to find a new make-up remover. Wish me luck!

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Toxicity Report 2012- Damn You Nivea Soft

 BODY WORK ANALYSIS
Time  Date Product Type Product Name Brand Name
5:35PM Tuesday Health Soap Dove Moisturizing Body Soap
5:37PM Tuesday Beauty Shampoo/Conditioner Pantene Pro-V 2in1 Shampoo and Conditioner
6:00PM Tuesday Beauty Lotion Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream
12:00PM Wednesday Health Soap Dove Moisturizing Body Soap
12:05PM Wednesday Health Toothpaste Crest Whitening Toothpaste
12:10PM Wednesday Beauty Deodorant Old Spice Sport Deodorant
1:15PM Thursday Health Soap Dove Moisturizing Body Soap
1:17PM Thursday Beauty Shampoo/Conditioner Pantene Pro-V 2in1 Shampoo and Conditioner
1:20PM Thursday Beauty Lotion Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream
1:22PM Thursday Health Toothpaste Crest Whitening Toothpaste
1:25PM Thursday Beauty Deodorant Old Spice Sport Deodorant
10:15PM Thursday Beauty Lotion Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream
10:30AM Friday Health Soap Dove Moisturizing Body Soap
10:33AM Friday Beauty Lotion Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream
10:40AM Friday Beauty Deodorant Old Spice Sport Deodorant

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 I was surprised to see the types of products that I expose my body to in an attempt to adhere to society’s notion of “good hygiene”.  When the assignment was initially assigned, I thought that as a man, I would have a very short list of body work products because I do not have to use make-up or nail polish.  On a daily basis, however, I found that I use multiple products, sometimes multiple times!  I was unhappy to see that I fell short of my own expectations with regards to my impact on the environment through my use of bodywork products, but after research of the products’ ingredients and how/where they are produced, I see that I am putting myself and the environment at risk, as well as the people that help make the products I use. 

If a student from another culture was to compose a similar list for this assignment, I imagine it being very different from my own.  Not every culture has the same beauty standards as the U.S., and not every culture has the same standards of hygiene that the U.S. does.  For this reason, I think other cultures’ lists would not have as many chemically harmful products on their list because they would not be pursuing the same social standards that we are encouraged to pursue in the U.S.  Income and class also play a role in access to these goods.  I have the luxury of being able to afford these products, but someone with a more limited income may not have as easy of an access to purchasing body work products, so I imagine their lists looking different from mine.  When thinking about which of these products are truly necessary, I think that only the soap and toothpaste are crucial to my health.  The number of times I use them per week, however, may be excessive and may only be done to meet social standards of cleanliness.  Freshly smelling bodies and shimmering white teeth are social expectations that do not reflect health but a standard of beauty that has been set of society.  In many cases, the “experts” that influence our decisions to use these products are the industries that want us to buy their products.  By presenting us with commercials that contain ‘expert’ opinions, we are led to believe that these products are not only beneficial to our bodies, but are also necessary for our bodies if we wish to achieve the ultimate level of hygienic success.  By adhering to these social expectations and hygienic standards, I am putting my body at risk by exposing it to harmful chemicals that it would otherwise not be exposed to.  I will continue to use many of these products, except the lotion, but I will decrease the amount and the frequency that I use with regards to each product. 

 

 

Even as a young person, I was taught that to achieve "good" hygiene, I had to embrace certain practices, like applying deoderant regularly and frequently. Especially as I hit puberty, I was told by the media, my school and home that I should embrace to habits to be considered "clean"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRODUCT ANALYSIS

I have very dry skin, especially in the fall and winter, so a product that I use very often is Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream for Men.  I love this product because each application lasts very long and also because I love how it smells.  I have two sisters who would always complain about the way I smelled growing up, so once I started using a lotion that made me smell better, I was hooked almost immediately.  After looking more in-depth into the complexities of this product and its chemical ingredients, I was shocked to see the dangerous amounts of chemicals that I was exposing my body to on a daily basis. 

–          Known Carcinogens- MYRISTYL MYRISTATE, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, METHYLPARABEN, BUTYLPARABEN

–          Known Endocrine Disruptors- METHYLPARABEN,  PROPYLPARABEN, BUTYLPARABEN, ETHYLPARABEN, ISOBUTYLPARABEN

–          Organ System Toxicity-LANOLIN ALCOHOL, MYRISTYL MYRISTATE, DIMETHICONE,

My Lotion Of Choice

PETROLATUM, SD ALCOHOL 1, GLYCERIN, SODIUM HYDROXIDE

–          Developmental/Reproductive Toxicity- BUTYLPARABEN, MYRISTYL MYRISTATE, PROPYLPARABEN

The short term effects of these chemicals include eye, lung and skin irritation, but also allergic reactions may develop from extended and frequent usage of the lotion.  The long term effects, however, are much more troubling.  Nivea Soft Moisturizing Cream for Men contains many chemicals that may potentially be harmful, but it also contains chemicals that are known to be harmful.  Certain ingredients, like MYRISTYL MYRISTATE and TOCOPHERYL ACETATE are known carcinogens that have been proven to develop tumor formation on animal test subjects.  The product also contains the chemicals PROPYLPARABEN and ETHYLPARABEN, both of which are accompanied by strong evidence that these chemicals lead to endocrine disruption. Nivea Soft also contains chemicals that are known to be toxic to human organs, like PETROLATUM, MYRISTYL MYRISTATE, MYRISTYL ALCOHOL, DIMETHICONE and MINERAL OIL.  What bothered me the most is that the producers of this product have the facts right in front of them that these chemical ingredients cause bodily harm to their customers, yet they continue to put the same ingredients into their products.

 

With regards to the relationship between exposure to the product and the analysis of risk involved, it is safe to say that there is a correlation between the amount and frequency of product used and the negative side-effects that result from use.  Parabens, for example, found in Nivea Soft, like ethylparaben, are known to bring about tumor growth with extended use, especially in breast tissue (truthinaging.com). Also, the CIR found a strong correlation between frequent exposures to TOCOPHERYL ACETATE and human skin toxicity which leads to the development of cancer.  The more that someone is exposed to the dangerous ingredients in Nivea Soft, the more they are at risk for developing the negative side-effects that accompany the use of chemically harmful ingredients.   I think it is time to start looking for an alternative moisturizing product or do away with them altogether. 

Although Nivea has production plants all over the world, their biggest and most recent plant opening was in Shanghai, China.  A vast majority of the Nivea products sold in the Asian and American markets now come from this Shanghai location, including the Nivea Soft Moisturizing Lotion line.  Many of the workers at this location, along with Nivea workers in various locations worldwide, are exposed to chemicals that are known to be hazardous with regards to the workplace.   SODIUM HYDROXIDE and PHENOXYETHANOL have both been considered hazardous chemicals in the workplace, and Nivea’s workers, especially in countries with less worksite regulation that the U.S., are exposed to these chemicals frequently and in large amounts.  SODIUM HYDROXIDE is prevalent in production of most of Nivea’s product, and is an extremely corrosive chemical that is harmful to the body through both inhalation and dermal contact. 

When Nivea Soft is produced, three chemicals in particular are used which create emissions that are harmful to the environments that surround Nivea production plants.  TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, MYRISTYL MYRISTATE and DIMETHICONE have all been shown to be ecotoxic and all three are emitted into the air or into the environment as waste during the production process and disposal process of Nivea soft.  This danger to the environment is exemplified in the opening of Nivea’s newest plant in Shanghai which opened in 2009.  Since 2009, the air quality of Shanghai has been on a steady decline, reaching an all-time worst in 2012 (http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/shanghai-air).  I am not saying that this drastic decline in air quality is Nivea’s fault alone, but since it opened in 2009, many other similar factories followed that were members of the same industry, and eventually the air quality took a turn for the worst after Nivea and related companies began producing beauty care products in that region.  The emissions that are created as a result of the toxic chemicals used in the production of Nivea Soft products, especially Nivea Soft Moisturizing Lotion for Men, are detrimental to the environments in which these factories are producing. 

In terms of potential alternatives that may alleviate the environmental injustices brought upon by the production of many beauty products, I would like to take the social-change approach since I am a sociology major.  I believe that the high demand and prevalence of the beauty market is because of the unfair social standards that society sets us to adhere to.  The social exercisers of power (sociology terms!) generate these images of beauty that everyone is encouraged to pursue, and the heads of capitalist industry create the notion that these ideals of beauty can only be met through the use of certain products.  Thus, a cycle is perpetuated where newer and “better” products are released as new images of ideal beauty are produced for people to pursue.  This is where change has to occur.  We have to address these misconstrued ideals of beauty, and we need to re-analyze where they are coming from.  Are these ideas of beauty organic and internal?? Or are we just forcibly embracing notions of beauty that have been fed to us by social images and messages? 

 

Social movements that address social expectations of beauty are beginning to take shape, and I believe that these movements are the first step in ultimately minimizing the beauty industry's impact on the environment

There are some movements that are beginning to take shape that are starting to address these issues, like the Beauty Redefined Campaign,  but if any change is to occur, they need to become more widespread.  By addressing the social influences that make us believe we need these products, we can lower our dependence on them, which will hopefully lower demand for them.  Conceptually, if the demand for these products decreases, then the production of them will decrease, thus minimizing the negative environmental effects that the production of these products creates.

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