7 skincare Ingredients
to avoid

In our ongoing quest to live a healthier life there’s plenty of bad things we try to cut out because we know the negative affect it has on our health. But when it comes down to the products we use we are less scrutinizing.

Your skin absorbs up to 60% of what it comes into contact with. It’s also more sensitive than other parts of the body because it has a less efficient barrier of protection. What you put on your skin should be as healthy and full of goodness as the food you eat.

So next time you’re looking at the label for the saturated fat percent in your lunch take notice from the list below of potential harmful ingredients in your skincare products you could be putting on your face.


Chemicals widely used as preservatives by skincare manufacturers. They can cause skin irritation in people with paraben allergies. More worryingly in November 2017 the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine published a study that linked parabens to sperm abnormality. They found men with higher urine concentrations of parabens were significantly more likely to have lower testosterone levels.

Look on the label for: methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, isobutylparaben


Petroleum & Mineral Oil

Mineral oil and petroleum commonly used in many skincare products both mineral oil and petroleum have the same origins as fossils fuels.

Cleansers, and moisturisers often contain this sticky substance. By locking moisture against the skin, mineral oil sits on the skin’s surface and can potentially block pores, increasing the risk of acne and blackheads.

Look on the label for : Paraffin, Mineral Oil, Propylene, ethylene, DEA, MEA


Polyethylene Glycols are petroleum based compounds that are widely used in skincare as thickeners and softeners. PEGs may contain ethylene oxide, a carcinogen. PEGs also have the ability to penetrate all 3 layers of the skin. This acts as a window for other harmful ingredients to be absorbed by the skin into the body.

Look on the label for : Polyethylene Glycol or PEG


Synthetic Fragrance

This is added to a product to give it a nice smell. Unfortunately it is also the most common allergen found in skincare products.  You don’t need this if you use fresh natural botanicals that already smell good.

Look on the label for : Fragrance



Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS)

Is a synthetic cleansing agent and is used in skincare products primarily for its abitliy to lather and foam when mixed with water. It strips your face of all its natural oils and often leaves dry, red and irritated skin.  SLS is used by researchers as a benchmark when they want to establish whether an ingredient is allergenic.

Look on the label for : SLS, Sulphate



There are 2 types of alcohol found in skincare products. Ethanol or isopropyl alcohol are the harmful ones. These are commonly used as a preservative but alcohol dries out and aggravates the skin and causes skin cell damage.

This is not to be confused with harmless alcohols such as cetyl, stearyl and cetearyl alcohol that give the skin a smooth texture and help keep ingredients fresh.

Look on the label for : Isopropyl Alcohol (Isopropanol), Alcohol denat, Ehtyl Alcohol, Ethanol,



This is a preservative found in rinse off products such as cleansers, shaving gel and shampoos that’s known to cause contact dermatitis or allergic skin reactions such as swelling, redness, blotchy and itchy skin.

Look on the label for : Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Benzisothiazolinone, Octylisothiazolinone


Our advice

Read the label. It will all be on there, the good the bad and the ugly and if you are looking for a natural alternative to the above view our collection for more information.