Thursday, March 12, 2009

New Study Finds Your Baby's Bath Products Could Be Toxic

A recent study conducted by The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics in March 2009 found 1,4-dioxane and formaldehyde, two known carcinogens, in dozens of bath products for babies and kids. It just amazes me that in the United States of America we do so little to protect our children.
In Sweden and Japan formaldehyde is banned in cosmetics and toiletries. The European Union and Canada have placed limits on formaldehyde concentrations. According to the study, two samples of Baby Magic "Soft Baby Scent" lotion had high enough concentrations of formaldehyde that they would require a warning label in Europe. Unfortunately, in the U.S. there are no restrictions on the levels of formaldehyde allowed in any body care products.
In the European Union and in Canada, 1,4-dioxane is banned in cosmetics. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has stated that even in trace amounts, 1,4-dioxane is a cause for concern. The EPA has classifed 1,4 dioxane as a "probable human carcinogen". However, the FDA has not set a safe level for 1,4 dioxane in cosmetics. In the study conducted by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, 67% of the products tested contained 1-4 dioxane. When various chemicals are processed with ethylene oxide to make them more soluble or gentler, 1,4-dioxane can occur as a byproduct. It is relatively easy to remove through a process called vacuum stripping. However, based on the results of the study, it does not appear that manufacturers are doing this.
It is time that we wake up in this country and demand better labeling and removal of harmful chemicals from the products that we use on our bodies. Trying to decipher the ingredient label on a product is not easy and very time consuming. Most parents assume that someone else is looking out for their safety. I see it all the time when I speak to a customer about healthier options. Other than lead and BPA, most people do not realize that there are chemicals in products that could harm them or their children. Did you know that more than 80% of chemicals in cosmetics have never been assessed for safety by the FDA? This study is a wake up call to parents. The list of well-known products tested that contain one or both of these harmful chemicals will be shocking to many. As parents we need to take a stand for our children. To find out more read the complete study.

Need help choosing products for your baby? Check out the Environmental Working Group's Parents Buying Guide.

Source: No More Toxic Tub: Getting Contaminants Out Of Children's Bath and Personal Care Products by The Campaign For Safe Cosmetics.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Toxic Bad Guys

I searched and searched for a skin care line that would be pure and natural, not make my child's hair greasy and one that she would like. After spending a small fortune and trying almost every natural line on the market, I came across TruKid. All of TruKid's ingredients are natural and free of toxins. Check out their Toxic Bad Guys list. This list shows many of the ingredients found in the majority of skin care products that have been reported to have detrimental effects on the planet and human health. Many have been linked to one or more of the following: cancer, neurological damage, and developmental/reproductive toxicity.

Toxic Bad Guys: 10 Most UNWANTED Ingredients:
  1. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (Found in 90% of products that lather)
  2. Petroleum (cold creams, lipsticks, baby creams, etc.)
  3. Phthalates (listed under fragrance) - Can be found in plastics, nail polishes, creams, lotions (anything containing fragrance/parfum ingredient)
  4. Avobenzene (aka: oxybenzone, benzophone, dioxybenzophone or benzophenome-3; and Parsol-1789) Can be found in chemical sunscreens as UVA absorber
  5. Triethanolamine (EDTA) Found in shampoos, toothpastes, sunscreens, hair color and moisturizers
  6. Parabens - Found in 75-90% of personal care products
  7. Diethanolamine (DEA) - Found in creams, shampoos, lotions and other cosmetics
  8. Propylene Glycol (PG) - Can be found in cake mixes, soft drinks, lotions, creams, baby wipes, shampoos, deodorants and other cosmetics
  9. Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) - Can be found in most skin cleansers, toothpastes and oven cleaners.
  10. Formaldehyde Derivatives - (DMDH Hydantoin, Imidazolidinyl Urea) - Can be found in shampoos and cosmetics to prevent molds, mildews and bacteria spoilage.

Source: TruKid

Monday, March 2, 2009

Remove Harmful Chemicals From My Children's Products

Moms are instinctively protective of their children. When a new mom brings home a beautiful baby from the hospital, this protective instinct can go into overdrive. They don't want anyone around the baby, they are afraid to take them out in the cold, they have baby monitors to hear every breath, they buy thermometers to make sure the bath water is not to hot...the list could go on and on. We do all these things because we now hold this beautiful miraculous human being that we love more than anything in the world. We have seen many changes in safety recommendations over the years. My first baby slept on her stomach because it was safer if she got sick. By the time I had my second child, I was placing him on his side with pillows to keep him in place. By the time I had my third child, I put her on her back to sleep, removed any blankets or pillows and swaddled her in a blanket. We are moms and we listen and learn and adapt to create the safest environment for our children. Thanks to the efforts of numerous non-profit groups such as the Environmental Working Group and Healthy Child Healthy World, moms are learning that there are also hidden dangers that they need to be aware of. They are learning that there are chemicals in products that can be harmful to their children. Just look at the awareness of the dangers of Lead, Bisphenol A and Phthalates to name a few. Many parents are starting to ask questions and read ingredient lists. They want to know what is in a product. There has been huge growth in the demand for organic products as more and more parents seek purer more natural choices for their children. One of the best resources to find out if a skin care product is safe for your baby is to check the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Safety Database. They even have a great printable buying guide to take with you shopping with a list of ingredients to avoid. It is easy to pretend that something that we can't see could possibly do harm. However with the rise in asthma, autism, cancer and birth defects in children, I think we owe it to our children to take the time to research and listen to organizations that are dedicated to protecting our children. If you have 15 or 20 minutes, please take that time to listen to this video from the Environmental Working Group.