Ahh…lipstick. I’m never without it. A must have in my makeup reserve. And so it is for many other women. But do you know what is in lipstick? Ingredients that will make you cringe for sure! This is true for many popular lipstick brands. When you read these ingredients, you may feel sad, mad, or downright sick. But before you ban lipstick from your makeup case, let me assure you that there are plenty of options that will have you feeling happy again in no time! I will share some of these in this post, but first for the rundown of what might be lurking in many popular lipsticks.
If you have ever read the ingredients on some lipsticks you could probably compare it to reading the label of a processed food. There are probably words there you have never heard of. But how many people ever bother to look up ingredients they don’t recognize? Probably surprisingly few. And most beauty companies are probably ever so glad that a lot of people never do. Let’s go over 10 ingredients found in many different brands of lipstick and you will see why.
Yes, there are more than 10 “bad” ingredients in lipstick, but I chose to focus on some I consider the worst. The first 6 are animal ingredients and the last 4 are harmful chemicals or toxins.
You might also see this ingredient listed at cochineal extract, natural red 4, crimson lake, or a host of other innocent sounding names. So what is it really and where does it come from? It comes from the female cochineal beetle in found in central and south America. These beetles eat red cactus berries. When the beetles are crushed, a very vibrant red dye is the product. This dye is used to pigment lipstick, especially shades of red or variations of red.
Even worse, products containing carmine are usually ones that are tested on animals, although there are some products that contain this ingredient that are not tested on animals. But if beetles are crushed to get the coloring, is the product really cruelty-free? I don’t think so.
So sad, but squalene is found in sharks’ livers and is commonly used in a lost of cosmetics including lipstick. 100% Pure uses pure olive squalene in the making of cosmetics. Olive squalene comes from a much kinder source….olives!
Lanolin comes mainly from sheep. It is a wax that is excreted from their oil glands. Lanolin is greasy and used in many lipsticks. Nice, huh?
If you have worn shimmery or iridescent lipstick, it might have contained guanine. This substance is found in the skin and scales of some fish.
If your lipstick has lip-plumping capabilities it most likely contains collagen. Collagen is a protein that is derived from animals.
This is possibly the most disgusting ingredient used in cosmetics, especially lipsticks, and it is one of the main ingredients in most soaps on the market today. Not only is it yucky, it just makes me sad to think about dead animals. Yes, dead animals! Tallow is made from the renderings of animal carcasses. The animals may be slaughtered animals, roadkill, or even animals euthanized at shelters.
Why would anyone want this substance on their lips? And who can bear the thought of wearing something on their body anywhere that could have come from a ….dog or cat? Anyone that can even make something like this has to be cold and heartless, even if the animal was dead already!
7. Heavy Metals
Heavy metals, including lead. We have all heard of lead poisoning, right? You will not find this ingredient (or probably any other heavy metal) listed on a lipstick’s ingredient list. But in 2007, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics did a study and found lead in many lipsticks. In 2010, the USDA tested 400 lipsticks and found lead in all of them. Yet the FDA claims that the levels found are “trace amounts” and therefore do not pose a threat to human safety. A University of California study found other heavy metals in lipstick and also determined that women reapplying lipstick throughout the day could ingest or absorb a whopping 87 milligrams of lead per day! That doesn’t sound like safe levels to me!
This is a preservative that has been linked to cancer and endocrine disruption. Its use is has been restricted by the European Union because of its toxicity, but it is still allowed to be put in lipstick and other cosmetics in the U.S.
Another toxin linked to cancer and endocrine disruption. Though not considered at harmful as methylparaben, this chemical can cause allergic reactions and irritate skin.
10. Propylene Glycol
This is not only found in lipstick, it is found in many mouth washes, and even in foods. But guess where else you’ll find it. In antifreeze. Enough said.
Now that you have an idea of the kinds of things found in the majority of lipsticks, I think you will be pleased to know that cruelty-free, non-toxic, natural alternatives are available. Here are some of the best cruelty-free choices. I checked and made sure these lipticks are all cruelty-free and vegan friendly because I know you don’t want lipstick with any of those ingredients I just described!
Got a favorite vegan, cruelty-free, natural or organic lipstick you’d like to share? Please leave a comment.
Thanks for reading!
For the Love of Animals,
Featured Image Found on Pixabay