14 Toxic Ingredients To Look Out For in Black Hair Products

UK-based entrepreneur Ovi King is the founder of Hair Care Revolution, which is an Afro hair & beauty event. It was formed “because of the ongoing and urgent need for hair advice, access to great products and services that the community globally still needs,” Ovi King said in an interview with Phyllis Ntim.

A lot of findings from a research conducted by HCR were revealed at their event Killer Cosmetics Part 2, which was held in London 15 August, 2019. Experts, trichologists, scientists who work in the hair and skin industry also shared some vital information on which ingredients in the products are detrimental to one’s health.

Find out more about in-depth knowledge of toxic ingredients in certain black hair products and which black hair companies were taken to court in the U.S. for adding harmful ingredients.

Below are the 14 toxic ingredients to avoid:

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate/Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS)
A surfactant found in many cleaning products, which is also used as an insecticide. The sodium and ammonium laureate sulfates are known cancer-causing ingredients. Also causes liver damage, skin rashes, depression, diarrhea and eye damage.

Fragrance
Fragrance of any kind isn’t good. It clogs the lymphatic system and induces major organ system toxicity. Also causes endocrine disruption.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine
This foaming agent has been associated with skin and eye irritation and allergic contact dermatitis. Although the government regards it as safe, many people have negative reactions to it.

Triclosan
With a moderate hazard rating, triclosan should be avoided at all costs. It can accumulate in our fat cells and keep our body in a state of toxicity. It causes irritation of the skin, eyes and lungs, and causes endocrine disruption and organ system toxicity.

Polysorbates
It is used to dissolve fragrance or other oil additives. Often found in conditioners. It leaves a residue on the skin and scalp, disrupts the skin’s natural pH and destroys the natural protective barrier of our skin and scalp. Polysorbate-80 is the worst of the bunch, but stay clear of all!

Polyethylene Glycol (PEG)
Often found in conditioners, PEG contains dangerous dioxin levels, often found as a by-product of the ethoxylation process in manufacturing. Dioxins have a direct link to cancer, and also cause organ system toxicity.

Potassium Sorbate
Potassium sorbate is used as a preservative in hair-care products, which causes skin and organ system toxicity.

Phenoxyethanol
It is  preservative used in cosmetics and hair care products. It causes organ system toxicity, and is an irritant to the skin, eyes and lungs. The FDA even warned that phenoxyethanol can cause shut down of the central nervous system, vomiting and contact dermatitis.

Retinyl Palmitate
Retinyl palmitate, a form of vitamin A, can speed the development of skin tumours and lesions, making it a possible carcinogen. It causes reproductive toxicity and organ system toxicity.

Dimethicone
Dimethicone is a silicone oil that can make the scalp and skin incredibly dry and irritated. It forms an almost plastic-like barrier on the outside of the skin and traps bacteria, sebum and impurities with it. It is also an eye-irritant and is non-biodegradable and horrible for the environment.

Behentrimonium Chloride
Behentrimonium Chloride is a type of ammonium salt used as a preservative and surfactant. It is a toxic compound, with concentrations of 0.1% and higher having been shown to damage the eyes. It is irritating to the skin and causes inflammation.

Quaternium-15
This chemical is another quaternary ammonium salt used as a surfactant and preservative in personal care products. It acts as a formaldehyde releaser and is definitely not safe. Formaldehyde is extremely carcinogenic, and should be avoided at all costs.

Mineral oil
It prevents hair development and the skin from releasing toxins. Also, it is typically added to shampoos to boost moisture and prevent hair frizz.

Cocamide DEA
It is added for thick thickening. It is a skin irritant and derivative of coconut oil. Moreover, it is known to be cancerous.

Ovi King is the president of the Afro Hair & Beauty Association which has already made history in the UK Afro Hair & beauty event in the UK.

 

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