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Clean Beauty (January 2017 edition) Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by

Quick reference guide for avoiding potentially harmful ingredients in everyday personal care products

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Chemicals to Avoid by Product Type

Makeup (Eyes & Face)
Carbon black, Ethano­lamine compounds, BAK, Prime yellow carnauba wax, Formal­dehyde and formal­deh­yde­-re­leasing preser­vat­ive­s,A­luminum powder, Retinyl acetate or retinyl palmitate, heavy metals, Titanium dioxide
Makeup (Lips)
BHT (butylated hydrox­yto­luene), PETROLATUM (petroleum jelly, mineral oil)
Nail Polish
Formal­dehyde, toluene, DBP, formal­dehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosyla­mide, and xylene
Polyet­hylene glycol (PEG compou­nds), Methyl­iso­thi­azo­linone and methyl­chl­oro­iso­thi­azo­linone, COAL TAR, 1,4-DI­OXANE
Benzal­konium chloride, Oxyben­zone, BENZOP­HENONE AND DERIVA­TIVES, Oxyben­zone, Octino­xate, Octisa­late, Octocr­ylene, Avoben­zone, Padimate O
triclosan and triclo­carban
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), Triclosan and Triclo­carban, PEGs (polye­thylene glycols) and Propylene Glycol, DEA (dieth­ano­lam­ine), Carrag­eenan
BUTOXY­ETH­ANOL, Benzop­henone, Nitros­amines, Ethano­lamine Compounds (MEA, DEA, TEA And Others),
Aluminum Compounds, Steareths, Triclosan, Propylene Glycol, TEA and DEA
Ethano­lam­ines, Parabens, Octino­xate, Oxyben­zone, Formal­dehyde releasing preser­vat­ives, Sodium Laureth Sulfate
Sources:, safeco­sme­tic­

The list of potent­ially harmful chemicals is not intended to be compre­hen­sive. We've included the most common ingred­ients. See anything we've missed? Let us know at contac­t@e­coc­ent­ric­ and we'll be sure to add it to the next edition.

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5 Quick Tips for Cleaner Shopping

Be Prepared.
Bring along this guide or download an app such as EWG Clean Living or Think Dirty
Read Labels Carefully.
But know that not all potent­ially harmful ingred­ients are required to be disclosed.
Shop Small.
The top 7 cosmetics companies on store shelves regularly use "­che­micals of concer­ns" in products. Find small brands & support them with your loyalty.
Recognize "­Green Washin­g."
Claims of "­nat­ura­l" and "­non­tox­ic" are unregu­lated and must be examined carefully. non-GMO verified, Leaping Bunny (cruelty free), EWG-ve­rified, non-GMO verified, EWG-ve­rified, ECOCERT
Gravitate to shorter ingred­ients lists, use fewer products and consider DIY

Why should you care?

1 in 8 of the 82,000 ingred­ients used in cosmetic and personal care products are hazardous industrial chemicals.
The average American uses nine personal care products – containing 126 chemicals – every day.
The EU currently bans 1500 cosmetics ingred­ients - while the US bans fewer than 10.
Our skin is our largest organ and up to 60% of what we put on our skin is absorbed into our bodies.

When in doubt, avoid these words:

Fragrance (note: even the word 'Fragrance Free' has no meaning)
Artificial Color & Flavor
Any ingredient that ends in 'paraben'
Anything ingredient that ends in 'phtha­late'