ARBONNE Ingredients Report
Some clients ask my advice on the skin care products they use and to help decipher the ingredients in them.
The big question for most women is : do anti-aging products really work?
This is a report I compiled months ago, but as I have had another inquiry on the Arbonne Anti-aging products, I thought I would publish it on the site.
Many cosmetic ingredients will draw natural moisture from deeper layers in the skin to hold on the top most layers if there is also a barrier such as a mineral oil to prevent evaporation. This gives the skin a temporary soft, smooth feel and often a ‘firming’ feel because the cells are plumped. (as in the eye cream testimonial)
Denatured alcohol and glycerin can dry the skin with repeated use.
Reported in the ‘Guardian’ … cosmetic companies request Laboratories to design a test that will allow them to make particular claims and with no regulatory bodies controlling the scientific studies conducted within the lab.
Cosmetic companies regularly trade mark their ‘secret’ ingredients to avoid peer review or criticism. (Bio-Hydra Complex, Stimu-Tex) This also means the consumer is unable to find information on what they are using!
Nothing can be found on the data bases for: Alpha Lipoic acid, Kojic Acid, these could be trade names to regular chemicals to disguise them (which is illegal) … I don’t know. Copper is also suspect.
Below is information on some of the features and ingredients…
Nanoparticles are increasingly being added to cosmetic products despite a lack of information about their safety. For example, nano-sized titanium dioxide and zinc oxide particles are used in sunscreens to protect against UV radiation without leaving a white tinge on the skin. Toothpastes contain biocomposites to promote tooth repair. Nanocapsules are used to transport active ingredients deeper into the skin (which is of concern because if the nanoparticles are absorbed into the bloodstream they may be transported around the body and cause damage to DNA). Fullerenes (football shaped molecules consisting of carbon atoms) are used for this purpose, but have been found to cause DNA damage and cell death in human tissues and brain damage in fish exposed to modest concentrations. Carbon nanotubes have been found to cause the same type of damage as asbestos.
What are pentapeptides? (Peptides)
In simple terms they are five amino acids linked in a chain. The overall term for linked amino acid chains is peptides. If there are two amino acids they are called dipeptides, if it is three – tripeptide etc. Peptides have numerous useful functions within the body but most studies on the skin benefits of peptides have been conducted in cell cultures not on human beings and a study conducted by Proctor & Gamble on human test subjects does little to support any anti-ageing claims. According to the ASA the majority of test subjects in the paper published by P&G in the peer reviewed International Journal of Cosmetic Science (2005), reported no effect.
Peptides cannot usually penetrate the skin and maintain stability due to their hydrophilic (water-loving) nature. In addition, when they are able to penetrate the skin enzymes can break them down, dramatically inhibiting their effects.
AHAs …It has been suggested that AHAs may cause the skin to age more rapidly and elevate the risk of skin cancer, due to their ability to remove the outer layer of skin which can elevate sensitivity to sunlight, thereby increasing photo-ageing. In one study the AHA glycolic acid elevated the sensitivity of human skin to sunburn by as much as 50 per cent in some individuals
‘NICNAS: Priority Existing Chemical Assessment Report,’ Australian Government, Department of Health and Aging, National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS), Marrickville, NSW, 2000 (12): 128; online at: www.nicnas.gov.au.
Research carried out on guinea pigs found that the AHA glycolic acid caused skin damage, with higher doses altering the structure of the skin and destroying some parts of the epidermal layer, as well as increasing UVB-induced skin damage, to a far greater degree than either glycolic acid or UVB in isolation.
Park, K.S. et al, Effect of Glycolic Acid on UVB-Induced Skin Damage and Inflammation in Guinea Pigs, Skin Pharmacology and Applied Skin Physiology, July-August, 2002: 15 (4): 236-245.
Retinyl Palminate vitamin A derivative, shown to improve tiny wrinkles – it decomposes under UVA into chemicals shown to cause mutations in mouse lymphoma cells. Is photo toxic- will cause skin ageing, educed DNA damage. Restricted in Canada.
Vitamin C topically applied Vit.C improves sun damage and enhances production of collagen and elastin – commercially available products contain low concentrations that are not easily absorbed into the skin and are unstable when exposed to oxygen – oxidization may actually promote production of free radicals
Cocoamidopropyl Betaine, foaming agent, natural oil is synthesized with ammonia and a toxic herbicide.
PEG (polyethylene glycol) may be contaminated with 1’4dioxane along with other toxic impurities (ethylene oxide, PAHs & heavy metals)
A potentially carcinogenic petroleum derivative, it penetrates the skin and can weaken the skin’s natural moisture factor. This could increase the appearance of aging and leave you more vulnerable to bacteria.
Paraben Preservatives.Any ingredient containing ethyl, methyl, butyl, propyl are Paraben preservatives, often used as inhibitors to microbial growth and to extent shelf life, widely used even though they are known to be toxic. Have caused many allergic reactions and skin rashes.
Disodium EDTA irritates skin, eyes and respiratory tract. Penetration enhancer (allows deeper penetration of other chemicals) Animal studies show: seizers, gastrointestinal problems, liver, kidney and endocrine system effects and reproduction abnormalities. A weak mutagen in microbial systems. In a number of studies on mammalian cells in vitro, inhibits DNA synthesis.
Limonene from petrochemical industry can cause toxic effects, potent allergen when exposed to oxygen. Potential carcinogen.
Glycerin, very cheap, but effective humectant in environments over 65% humidity where it draws moisture from the atmosphere to the skin. In dry conditions (air conditioning) actually draws moisture out and away from the skin layers, causing dehydration and aging the skin.
Choose a moisturiser containing ingredients certified organic to food standards.
Ceteryl Alcohol: mild irritation, contact dermatitis in some.
Butylene Glycol: petro-chemical, potentially cause contact dermatitis. Animal studies: mild skin and eye irritation, endocrine system alterations. Reproductive, brain and nervous system effects.
Oxybenzone – most common causes of photo contact allergy. Immediate and delayed hypersensitivity. Detected in human urine and milk. Potentially damage DNA under UV light. Skin sensitization. Penetration enhancer. Used in many sunscreens!
Choose sunscreen that is devoid of nano particles, oxybenzone and other harmful chemicals.
Glycol Ethers (general – there are several listed) absorb into the skin – dissolve the skin’s protective oils. Liver and kidney damage (short term exposure) May damage red blood cells in bone marrow.
Phenoxyehtonal – moderate health concern on EWG.org. Organ system toxicity, brain and nervous systems. Linked to cancer and central nervous system depression. Strong concern for irritant of skin, eyes and lungs. Can cause allergies.
Biochemists’ Rule of Thumb:-
The first 3 or 4 ingredients make up 90% to 95% of the entire product. The mid section (but there is a lot of mid section here!) is roughly 5% to 8% and the last 5 or so ingredients make up the remainder 1% to 3%
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