Toxic ingredients in cosmetics


Here is some controversial ingredients of conventional cosmetic:


Mineral oils:

Paraffinum liquidum, Cera microcrystallina, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, etc. They are derived from petrochemicals, shales … They are inert fatty substances for the skin which do not interact with it. These oils form an occlusive film on the skin that prevents water from evaporating. They have a disastrous ecological balance and are inexpensive for the manufacturer


Fatty alcohols and solvents:

Methyl / Propyl / Caprylyl -alcohol, Cetyl alcohol, Stearilic alcohol … etc. They stabilize and emulsify cosmetics. These synthetic ingredients can be irritating and pollute the environment. They also have roughly the same characteristics as mineral oils.



Silicones have endings in -one or -oxane: dimethicone, cyclohexasiloxane … etc.
Well tolerated by the skin, they provide additional softness and “glide” to cosmetics. However, they do not nourish the skin and above all, they take hundreds of years to degrade! They are found in almost all conventional cosmetics that can be rinsed or not, including shampoos, shower gels, makeup …



PEG, PPG but also -cellulose, crosspolymer, polypropylene, X-polymer-X, X-vinyl-X, etc.
These materials, sometimes plastic, sometimes petrochemical, have more or less the same characteristics as silicones, providing a touch of softness. They can also be used as an emulsifier. They are obtained from polluting chemistry, with the use of gases which are sometimes toxic for ethoxylated substances (find the ending in -eth).


Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or SLS:

It is a surfactant, responsible for the foam in shower gels. It is nevertheless known to be irritating and very allergenic for: the skin, mucous, the eyes.


Aluminum Salts:

Prefixes and Terminations with – Aluminum –
Antiperspirants and controversial (carcinogenic?) Agents, even the ANSM invites measurement and has requested additional studies on these aluminum salts. They are also suspected of having a long-term impact on the nervous system. Be careful, the alumina is not concerned because inert and authorized in organic in particular.


Controversial preservatives:

BHT, EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, benzophenone, alcohol, -paraben-, Quaternium 15, Quaternium 18, Polyquaternium 10, DMDM ​​Hydantoin, Chlorphenesin, Diazolidinyl uurea, Methylisothiazolinone, etc.
Preservatives are necessary for cosmetics containing water to avoid contamination and bacteriological development and mold. Some preservatives are there to protect the formula from oxidation (benzophenone). They are accused of being sometimes irritants in the long term, sometimes pollutants, sometimes carcinogenic, and sometimes endocrine disruptors.
Slow Cosmétique thinks that many preservatives could be avoided if we changed our beauty gestures (solid shampoo and soaps instead of foaming gels, balms and oils instead of creams when possible, quick preparations, etc.).


Formaldehyde liberators:

formaldehyde (or formalin) is today classified as an allergen and a carcinogen. It is very rare in cosmetics and regulated. But what about ingredients that release formaldehyde on contact with water?
We also find in the ingredients of cosmetic products “formaldehyde liberators”, which under certain conditions, release this compound gradually.
These are quaternium-15, imidazolidinyl urea, diazolidinyl urea, dimethylol dimethyl hydantoin, bronopol (2-bromo-2-nitropropane-1,3-diol).


Endocrine disruptors:

We are increasingly suspected of having an impact on our hormonal and sexual health, in particular.
Here are the worst among them:
– parabens, including methyl-propyl-ethyl- and butylparaben. (preservatives)
– phenoxyethanol (preservatives)
– triclosan and BHA, preservatives
– synthetic UV filters: benzophenone, oxybenzone, and others
– phthalates, promote the penetration of a product into the skin; fix a fragrance in a product. In particular diethyl phthalate and names containing phthalic acid.
The name “Perfume” or “Fragrance” in an INCI list designates a synthetic perfume potentially attached to phthalates.


Controversial dyes:

CI followed by a number is a dye, natural or not. CI followed by 7 is normally a natural dye. But beware, CI75470 is the code for carmine red for example … It comes from female mealybugs that must be killed to obtain the red pigment used in some lipsticks … Other dyes are known to be irritants or allergens. Not easy to distinguish acceptable dyes from others, so we limit a max because it is not useful in cosmetics except for makeup of course but Slow Cosmetics supports mineral makeup 100% natural.


Synthetic fragrances:

“Perfume” or “fragrance” in the INCI* list often designates a synthetic perfume! Natural fragrances based on essential oils are listed by the Latin name of the plants from which they are extracted. If the perfume is organic, then the ingredient is written perfume * (* referring to ingredients from organic farming or certified organic).



The international nomenclature of cosmetic ingredients or INCI, an abbreviation of International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients was designed in 1973 by the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association (CTFA), an American association of cosmetic manufacturers. In Europe, its use has been compulsory for cosmetics since 1998: all cosmetics must give on their packaging the complete list of ingredients in descending order of their quantity and under their INCI name.
The indication of all the ingredients makes it possible to know what the cosmetics really contain and to identify the compounds which can cause allergies. Ingredient names are the same in all countries using the INCI system. United States, Europe, Japan, planned in Canada.
The INCI nomenclature still has limits: we do not know the exact quantity of the ingredients (this problem is not linked to the INCI list but to the fact that the concentrations are not compulsory to protect the secret recipes of the manufacturers), nor their origin (it is not specified if certain ingredients are genetically modified) and their method of manufacture.

The main disadvantage of this language is that it is incomprehensible to consumers. This is why Ceylan Vie offers you this article to find out exactly the composition of your daily cosmetics to take care of your health.