The health impacts of cancer-causing contaminants in everyday home and beauty products
We regularly hear that contaminants in our household and body care products pose no risk to our health. According to many government agencies and industry organizations, consumers shouldn’t worry. They say we are being exposed to extremely low quantities of cancer-causing contaminants.
At ATTITUDE, we believe it’s important to take precautions and to rely on a rigorous product development process. Science doesn’t currently have enough data to assess the impact of a lifetime of exposure to contaminants. Our skin is not impenetrable; it can absorb a vast array of chemicals, which can pass into the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, harmful chemicals may accumulate in the body over time.
Researchers are only beginning to understand1 the cumulative effects of prolonged exposure to low doses of chemicals found in everyday products. It remains difficult to determine the impact of these contaminants, due to their ubiquity, quantity and the way various chemicals interact.
The accumulative effects of cancer-causing contaminants
According to research by the EWG2, the long-term impact of cancer-causing contaminants in our personal care products starts before we’re born. Contaminants accumulate in small quantities in our systems every day, all our lives. The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics3 has flagged 11 of 113 carcinogens identified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) that are still in many personal care products available today.
At ATTITUDE, we do things differently
We begin every product development process by evaluating the source of raw materials used to manufacture our ingredients. All our ingredients must be:
- Natural: Ingredients must be from a natural vegetable or mineral source.
- Hypoallergenic: None of our ingredients are on the list of known allergens (Cosmetic Regulation No. 1223/20094).
- Vegan: All our products are certified vegan; they never contain any ingredients of animal origin. We are also members of the PETA Beauty Without Bunnies Program, which certifies that none of our ingredients or products is ever tested on animals.
- Sustainable: Based on a life cycle analysis, our products and ingredients meet environmental criteria of biodegradability, aquatic toxicity, renewable supply, and end-of-life. And all our products are certified by UL-ECOLOGO.
- Free of contaminants and by-products listed on the California Proposition 65 list including cancer-causing chemicals compounds, mutagens and endocrine disruptors.
Rigorous criteria to protect environmental and human health
After we confirm that an ingredient contains no contaminant of concern, is natural, vegan, hypoallergenic and sustainable, we ask its supplier to provide a signed document stating that it is free from known harmful substances. Then as a final measure of quality control, we randomly send ATTITUDE body care and household products to an independent laboratory to verify that they contain no carcinogens such as 1,4-Dioxane5.
What’s more, our research and development team considers the EWG Environmental Health Risk Analysis for every ingredient we use. Each product developed must obtain a score between 0 and 2 on the EWG scale, which corresponds to a low risk to health.
Only when an ingredient passes all these tests can we include it in our new product research and development process. In other words, we work hard to ensure your peace of mind. Every ATTITUDE product is 100% worry free — free from allergens, animal products, carcinogens and endocrine disruptors.
Ready to learn more? Read the other posts in this series:
1Kristof, Nicholas. “Contaminating Our Bodies With Everyday Products”. New York Times. May 9, 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/29/opinion/sunday/contaminating-our-bodies-with-everyday-products.html
2 “Exposing the Cosmetics Cover-Up”. Environmental Working Group. May 9, 2017. http://www.ewg.org/research/exposing-cosmetics-cover-up
3 “Carcinogens in Cosmetics”. Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. May 9, 2017. http://www.safecosmetics.org/get-the-facts/chemicals-of-concern/known-carcinogens/
4 “Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 November 2009 on cosmetic products”. Official Journal of the European Union. May 9, 2017. http://ec.europa.eu/health//sites/health/files/endocrine_disruptors/docs/cosmetic_1223_2009_regulation_en.pdf
5 “Carcinogenic 1,4-Dioxane Found in Leading “Organic” Brand Personal Care Products”. Organic Consumers Association. May 9, 2017. https://www.organicconsumers.org/old_articles/bodycare/DioxaneRelease08.php