It’s time for your daily routine! Shower, lather up, and get that makeup on. Most of us go through our daily routines and purchase our favorite beauty products almost absentmindedly, with the best intentions of using the products that work for us. But perhaps the next time you buy your beloved lotions or preferred shampoos, you’ll take a peek at the ingredients. You never know what could be going onto your face, hair, and who knows where else!
“You Got A Little Something On Your Face…”
Cats eat their newborns’ placentas, so why don’t we put our babies’ placentas on our faces? (Uhh…because it’s gross?!) Despite the ick factor, various remains from humans and certain animal placenta (most commonly sheep) are known to be found in some products that are said to do wonders for skin and hair. It’s thought that placenta extract serves as a source of protein and good-for-you hormones like estrogen. However, using such products at an early age or when pregnant can be potentially hazardous because it may trigger early puberty. (And yes, squeamishness!)
“Beetle Juice, Beetle Juice, Beetle JUICE!”
Maybe this time you might want to call on him and let his name leave your lips, because for all you know, he’s been on them for awhile. According to The New York Times, cochineal beetles, which originate in South America, are being used to make many of your favorite lipsticks and blush. These beetles eat a certain pear cactus and when they are full of the plants’ juice, are then boiled and dried out so they can be crushed into “carmine.” This after-product is what composes the red dye in most makeup. The good news is that cosmetic companies must disclose any bug ingredients. Lucky us! So toss that old lipstick if you see “carmine” in its ingredients and can’t stand for beetle guts to kiss your lips!
Drop Dead Gorgeous
Ever wonder where that squirrel you hit the other day went? (Hey, it happens!) Well, he could just as well be seeking revenge by popping up in one of your lotions or makeup products. Believe it or not, animal fat is used as skin-conditioning agents, as well as an emollient in cosmetics such as eyeshadow and lipstick. And which animals, specifically, are being used for their fat? Lab animals, road kill, euthanized zoo and shelter animals, and expired meat from the grocery can all be processed by boiling the carcasses in a pot to create the fatty byproducts. As disturbing as this is, at least some companies are being resourceful.
“Well Algae Darn!”
You know that gross stuff that ends up on the top of the pool when no one bothers to clean it? Now depending on whether you would rather dead skin cells or diatomaceous earth on your face, readers beware. Diatomaceous earth is the fossilized remains of single-celled algae called diatoms. These diatoms are the same do-hickeys that cause your fish tank to turn slimy. Ever use an exfoliating body scrub? Well, even though you have unknowingly rubbed fish tank algae all over yourself, it is such algae that helps to remove dead skin cells. Now it’s up to you which you’d prefer.
Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!
Another strange ingredient that may be in your cosmetics is bone marrow from… chicken?! Although never exactly advertised as such, it is said that chicken bone marrow is a good source of glucosamine, which acts as an anti-inflammatory for topical skin products. Ever use Cover Girl’s Simply Ageless Blush? Their blush is just one example of a product that uses the bone marrow as an ingredient. Easy, breezy, beautiful…chicken girl!
Simethicone. Don’t know what that is? Well, simethicone is used as an “anti-foam” to create less surface tension when products such as Aussie Moist conditioner are applied to the hair. The effect of the product gives the hair a slick feeling before you rinse. This same ingredient is used to soothe your tummy in cases of… eh hem… flatulence. You’re excused!
Birds Of A Feather Flock to Your Hair
Thanks to birds, we can have healthier and shinier hair. Some bird feathers boost amino acid chains that are silkier than human hair, so the keratin (a certain type of protein) is used in some shampoos, giving our hair that strong, smooth look.
Lifestyles of the Rich and Eggy
Not only a decadent dish (to some), snail eggs, a.k.a caviar, are used in some hair products. Caviar contains calcium, iron, magnesium, protein, selenium, vitamins and omega-3s, and because of its strengthening and moisturizing properties, it’s often utilized to soften and smooth hair. The hair care brand Alterna, for instance, has a whole line of caviar products. So if the taste of snail eggs doesn’t settle well in your stomach, maybe it will with your hair.