the FDA is once again an A-hole, or How shampoo is killing us...

It's no secret that I'm a huge proponent of making my own cosmetic/ personal hygiene stuff to avoid all the toxic garbage contained in most of these products. However, since I just added a newborn to my always active toddler, time is no longer something I have. So it came down to either continuing to make food for my family, or make my shampoo. Food won.

And thus began my quest for shampoos and conditioners that wouldn't mess with my hormones, which are already quite messy enough, thank you very much.

One might think this would be easy peasy. One would be incorrect.

For starters, any big brand of shampoo that says it's all natural is lying.

No parabens and no sulfates are good, but it's the phthalates that really eff you up. And finding anything with no phthalates is HARD.

The FDA website says that phthalates are safe. Lies. Big fattie fat lies.

The EU equivalent of the FDA says they are not. The EWG says they are not. Even the website Babycenter says they are not.

Let's address.

"What are phthalates?
Phthalates are a group of chemicals used in hundreds of products, such as toys, vinyl flooring and wall covering, detergents, lubricating oils, food packaging, pharmaceuticals, blood bags and tubing, and personal care products, such as nail polish, hair sprays, aftershave lotions, soaps, shampoos, perfumes and other fragrance preparations."  FDA Website

"FDA reviewed the safety and toxicity data for phthalates, including the CDC data from 2001, as well as the CIR conclusions based on reviews in 1985 and 2002. While the CDC report noted elevated levels of phthalates excreted by women of child-bearing age, neither this report nor the other data reviewed by FDA established an association between the use of phthalates in cosmetic products and a health risk. Based on this information, FDA determined that there wasn’t a sound, scientific basis to support taking regulatory action against cosmetics containing phthalates." (I put the emphasis on that phrase).

Oh, so the fact that the rise of infertility (male and female), reproductive diseases, thyroid/ hormonal issues, weight gain, early menopause, lack of ovulation, and early growth of breasts and pubic hair in VERY young girls... phthalates doesn't at all play a role in that? Oh good. thanks FDA.

"Under the authority of the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act (FPLA), FDA requires an ingredient declaration on cosmetic products sold at the retail level to consumers. Consumers can tell whether some products contain phthalates by reading the ingredient declaration on the labels of such products.
However, the regulations do not require the listing of the individual fragrance ingredients; therefore, the consumer will not be able to determine from the ingredient declaration if phthalates are present in a fragrance. Also, because the FPLA does not apply to products used exclusively by professionals--for example, in salons--the requirement for an ingredient declaration does not apply to these products. Based on available safety information, DEP does not pose known risks for human health as it is currently used in cosmetics and fragrances. Consumers who nevertheless do not want to purchase cosmetics containing DEP may wish to choose products that do not include "Fragrance" in the ingredient listing."

"Phthalates (pronounced "thah-lates") are chemical plasticizers that have been widely used since the 1950s to soften plastics that would otherwise be brittle and crack when bent. Because phthalates are not chemically bound to the plastics they're added to, they're continuously released into the air or food or liquid. Did you ever notice how plastic sometimes hardens over time? That's because the phthalates have leached out of it."  Babycenter: Phthalates: What you need to know

"European governments have restricted the use of phthalates in some baby products, cosmetics, and plastics designed to come into contact with food.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has reviewed the same evidence viewed by the EU but felt it was incomplete and left the decision up to manufacturers, many of whom voluntarily removed phthalates from items typically mouthed by babies such as teething rings, pacifiers, nipples, and some toys. This has been a voluntary measure, however. And if you're a parent, you know that a baby doesn't distinguish between "toy" and "not toy" when it comes to putting things in his mouth."

"Toys intended to be placed in the mouth by children under three years of age and containing phthalates are prohibited throughout the European Union (EU); importing these products is also prohibited. Phthalates are toxic substances that may be found in soft PVC, a type of plastic which is also used in the manufacturing of toys."-  European Union Legislation

And over here you can read about how the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) believes that these are toxic substances that they are performing studies on to see their cumulative effect on humans.  "EPA is concerned about phthalates because of their toxicity and the evidence of pervasive
human and environmental exposure to them. Thus, EPA intends to initiate action to address the
manufacturing, processing, distribution in commerce, and/or use of these eight phthalates"
But of course America, let's go ahead and keep allowing companies to not only use them, but also NOT CLEARLY IDENTIFY their usage of these products. Course, that will suck when we find out that they DO in fact cause harm, but hey sorry, look at all the money made for those companies while we were testing. We wouldn't want to miss out on that right? I mean, those 5 people that own those companies need all those billions of dollars. 
This link is your best bet, outside of making all of these products yourself, to find out what products are seen as health hazards. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) made a list of a LOT of different products and their ratings as far as toxicity are concerned. It's kind of astounding how many of them rate in the dangerous levels. Especially when you add up all of the products you use on a daily basis. 0-2 is low hazard, 3-6 is moderate hazard, and 7-10 is high hazard. So let's take a shampoo. Type in Pantene, and it says that there are many different kinds, and the range is from 4-8. Ok fine. So shampoo is a 4 and conditioner is a 4. Now let's add on sprays, gels, or other hair care products. But oops, don't forget about make-up, perfume, lotion.....if all of those products individually are sitting in the moderate to high hazard zone, imagine the damage when you put all of them together on a daily basis. My guess is that your insides don't like it. I know mine didn't. 
I find it appalling, shocking I know, that the government continually allows this crap. Their data is not up to date, they clearly have not been listening to groups like the EPA and the EWG who are finding that these are in fact harmful. They don't at all care about people, families, CHILDREN who are being exposed to more and more of these chemicals. AND WE STILL WONDER WHY OUR NATION IS SICK, FAT, and DYING. Let's see. Eff with hormones and what happens? Do you think maybe cancer? Perhaps infertility? Birth defects and abnormalities? Yeah, that sounds about right. Combine that with the crap they allow in food and we are one big science experiment. 

I'm so mad, sad, fed up with, disgusted by this crap. all of it. I shouldn't have to work this hard. NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO WORK THIS HARD to keep themselves, their families, and their children healthy. It shouldn't cost this much. THERE SHOULDN'T BE ENTIRE BUILDINGS DEDICATED TO WIPING OUT CHILDHOOD CANCERS!!!!! There should not ever be that many sick kiddos. Ever. It's heartbreaking. And it's happening in a country that has enough knowledge, and money, to know better. To DO better. I know people are all up in arms about parents deciding not to vaccinate their kids. And I get it. I do. It's a tough decision and a tough conversation. BUT WHY AREN'T PEOPLE UP IN ARMS ABOUT THE RISE OF CANCERS IN CHILDREN!?!?! Measles have nothing on leukemia. And yet we act as though it's just the luck of the draw, the kids that die from cancers. That's just not the case. 

It's in our air, our food supply, our water supply, our homes, our decor, our air fresheners, our cleaning products, our hygiene products, our beauty supplies, our toys. It's pervasive, and it becomes more so every. single. day. 
Let's let our government know that we're not ok with being poisoned. I sure as hell will.


  1. Just learned about phthalates after reading "Not Just a Pretty Face." You'd be interested in hearing from the head of sales of a company called Beautycounter based in Santa Monica. You can listen in on a call. Let me know what you think!
    Thursday, July 10th, 2014
    12:00 PM PST
    Dial-in: 1.888.407.5039
    Access Code: 62234147


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