I have been hesitant to go into detail about specific chemicals and their suspected side effects for several reasons: 1. I am not a scientist. 2. I’m still learning about all of this. 3. There are some really crazy people out there who get really angry about this subject, and I don’t want to deal with them! And, 4. That’s not the kind of blog I want to have. There are many who do it better, and I’m grateful for them, but that’s not where my passion lies. What I want to do is bring you my findings, play with safe and beautiful makeup, and connect with all of you over the things I love. However, it’s been difficult to do that when every step of the way I learn something new and scary. I can only promise to be honest with you and share what I find.
With this said, the next few makeup reviews you’re going to see from me are of items I’ve bought over the past month. I’ve liked most of these items, but unfortunately, almost all of them contain an ingredient that I just discovered is a little bit, well, icky. That ingredient is Phenoxyethanol. Now everyone remain calm, you’re not going to drop dead if you open your purse and find this listed on something, but if you can avoid it in the future, you should.
From what I’ve learned, this is the ingredient that a lot of “green” and “natural” (I’m really starting to hate those words) companies are using as a preservative in place of parabens. Companies can now say that their cosmetics are paraben-free, but it’s often because they contain phenoxyethanol. Cosmetics absolutely have to have preservative systems to be safe for use, no arguments there. But this chemical may be as bad as the parabens it replaces. In fact, the the FDA itself issued a warning on a product containing this chemical a few years back. You can read more about this preservative here and here. I am not going to throw out the products I bought that contain this ingredient, I really like them, but for now I’m going to try to avoid buying products that contain it whenever possible in the future.
I encourage you to read more about phenoxyethanol yourself, and make your own decision.