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Understanding Your Skin Care Ingredients The skin care and cosmetics industry is very loosely regulated, especially in Canada and there is a lot of misinformation out there.  There is basic information we need to know before deciding which skin care to choose.

As a consumer we have great power in our purchasing decisions.  By making healthier choices and rejecting toxic chemicals we are telling the industry, “We demand better”.

Companies will sit up and listen . . . some already are!

What goes on goes in.

It can take 26 seconds for a cream to penetrate your blood stream.  That means, not only are you what you eat but you’re also what you put on your skin.

Potentially Dangerous Skin Care Ingredients


Here is a list of some of the most common toxic ingredients to avoid:

Parabens:                                                                                                                                                                                                                            are the most widely used preservative in cosmetics. Parabens easily penetrate the skin and an estimated 75 to 90 per cent of cosmetics contain parabens.  Parabens can mimic estrogen, the primary female sex hormone. They have been detected in human breast cancer tissues, suggesting a possible association between parabens in cosmetics and cancer. In addition, studies indicate that methylparaben applied on the skin reacts with UVB leading to increased skin aging and DNA damage.

Phthalates:                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Used as a preservative and to make creams feel smooth to the touch, Phthalates make plastics softer and more flexible.  Found in PVC. The Canadian Cancer society recommends reducing exposure to this chemical

Isopropyl Alcohol,  (SD-40): It is made from propylene, a petroleum derivative and is found in many skin and hair products, fragrance, antibacterial hand washes as well as shellac and antifreeze.  May promote brown spots and premature aging of skin. It may cause headaches, flushing, dizziness, mental depression, nausea, vomiting, narcosis, anesthesia, and coma.  A very drying and irritating solvent and dehydrator that strips your skin’s moisture and natural immune barrier, making you more vulnerable to bacteria, molds and viruses.

Fragrances, perfume:                                                                                                                                                                                     Fragrance on a label can indicate the presence of up to four thousand separate ingredients, many toxic or carcinogenic. Symptoms reported to the FDA include headaches, dizziness, allergic rashes, skin discoloration, violent coughing and vomiting, and skin irritation. Clinical observation proves fragrances can affect the central nervous system, causing depression, hyperactivity, irritability, inability to cope, and other behavioral changes.

Mineral Oil: Used in many baby products (baby oil is 100% mineral oil!) cheap makeup and as an inexpensive “filler” It’s a petroleum by-product that coats the skin like plastic, clogging the pores, interferes with skin’s ability to eliminate toxins, and promotes acne and other disorders. Prevents absorption of Vitamin A

Propylene Glycol (PG) and Butylene Glycol: petroleum plastics which act as “surfactants” (wetting agents and solvents). They easily penetrate the skin and can weaken protein and cellular structure. PG is strong enough to remove barnacles from boats! The EPA considers PG so toxic that it requires workers to wear protective gloves, clothing and goggles and to dispose of any PG solutions by burying in the ground. Because PG penetrates the skin so quickly, the EPA warns against skin contact to prevent consequences such as brain, liver, and kidney abnormalities. But there isn’t even a warning label on products such as stick deodorants, where the concentration is greater than in most industrial applications.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) & Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES): detergents and surfactants that pose serious health threats. Used in car washes, garage floor cleaners and engine degreasers—and in 90% of personal-care products that foam. Animals exposed to SLS experienced eye damage, depression, labored breathing, diarrhea, severe skin irritation, and even death.

If you ever want to know what an ingredient is,

Visit or email  We can help you find out what it is.

Green Light!  Go ahead!

Here is a list if some things that are good for your skin

Essential oils:                                                                                                                                                                                                     these are extractions of the essence of a plant.  Each essential oil has a different purpose but they are extremely potent and concentrated making them very effective.

Hyaluronic Acid (Vegan):                                                                                                                                                                            vegan hyaluronic acid is extremely hydrating and protects collagen and elastin fibrils.  You want plant based hyaluronic acid. A lot of companies use a by-product of pig skin which our skin cells do not accept rendering it totally useless.

Vegetable Glycerin:                                                                                                                                                                                Humectants prevent water loss and should not be one of the first ingredients as too much has the opposite of effect causing dryness.  Again, you want to see vegetable glycerin, not animal.

Polyphenols from Tea:                                                                                                                                                                                                     Anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial

PlantsStone Crop, Licorice, Aloe, Tea tree, Argan, Tara tree:                                                                                                                 Each plant has specific qualities but when high on the ingredient list are potent anti-oxidants and supply the skin with vital nutrients.  Some plants encourage collagen production.  You can find alternatives to any chemicals you’re likely to come across in products.

Fruit: Blueberries, Strawberries, Acai, Grapefruit:                                                                                                                                      Again, each fruit is high in anti-oxidants, and provides the skin with vitamins and minerals to improve its function.  Some fruit exfoliate the skin.  The more seeds a fruit has the higher in anti-oxidants it is.

Mother Nature provides us with all that we need!

What is Green Washing?

The act of misleading consumer regarding the environmental practices of a company of the environmental benefits of a product or service.    We need to protect ourselves from greenwashing!



Eminence Organics  ~

David Suzuki ~

Terra Choice ~

Environmental Working Group ~

Canadian Cancer society ~



Kabuki Spa & Skin Centre


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