WYSKW-Phthalates

Mimicry.

What is there to say about mimicry? It can be funny and fun, it can be annoying and dumb. But can it be dangerous? That is for you to decide. I love mimics and mimes! They are fun to watch and sometimes they are even fascinating! But when it comes to hormones, honestly I’m torn. There are definitely times when hormones need help. I’m a woman I totally feel know this first hand. But what about when our hormones are being mimicked all the time? Is that dangerous or not? I’m really on the fence about this one. But I lean toward ‘this is not the smartest idea’ and ‘this is probably really unhealthy in the long run’.

What the world am I talking about?

Phthalates.

They are everywhere. I mean that pretty literally. They can be found in makeup, hairspray, nail polish, moisturizer, shampoos, fragrances and even those yummy scented soaps. That’s pretty much everywhere, wouldn’t you agree?

I don’t use hair spray or nail polish, but I pretty much use the rest of all that stuff. Pretty much daily. Some I use twice a day like moisturizer. I have very oily-dry skin. Not in the T-zone kinda of way, but in the way that my skin is so oily mascara slides off my eyelashes but my nose will be in a constant state of flaky skin unless I give it moisturizer. Odd, but that’s just the way it is.

What is all the hub-bub about phthalates then?

They mimic hormones, especially estrogen. Some research has shown that phthalates are suspected in early onset of puberty in girls. Uhhh…no thanks, I want my daughter to have the freedom from puberty as long as she can. Jus’ sayin’. Another study proved that phthalates caused early breast development.

Boys are not off the hook either. Other studies have shown that phthalates might disrupt hormones in boys prenatally. That’s in-utero. When that sweet baby is just beginning, just growing and developing here is a chemical messing with him already.

Yeah. I’m not down with that.

Here’s an interesting thought: In Europe some phthalates are banned in cosmetics. Interesting…

Here in America, phthalates are banned in all toys or child-care items that can be placed in a child’s mouth, (dishes, pacifiers, teethers).

Very interesting…

So if it’s banned in those things, why isn’t it banned in general? From everything? Isn’t this saying phthalates are bad news?

I can’t answer that for you.

I can tell you what phthalates are. They belong to a family of chemicals that allow make-up and lotions to penetrate the skin, make nail polish flexible and fragrance last longer.

Did you know that the largest organ you have is your skin? It is. Phthalates are designed to access the largest organ you have. Their job is to penetrate, sink in, reside in your very skin. Yes they bring the good stuff along with, but they are also bringing those false hormones.

But we don’t allow that for our children’s toys or anything they might put in their mouth. Europe bans phthalates from their cosmetics.

They mimic hormones. Every time we use them our body is receiving a false signal.

Hormones are what the body uses to stimulate certain other cells or tissues into action.

Phthalates are giving the same message whether our body is really ready for “Go” or not.

So is this dangerous? Does early puberty bring on early menopause? Does that have any effect on becoming pregnant when you are ready? Does disrupting a baby boy’s hormones in utero mess with him later?

I have no idea. I can’t answer those questions and I’m not sure we’ve exposed ourselves to phthalates long enough to have all that answered and more.

I think I’m definitely leaning toward “this is not the smartest choice to make”. I am leaning a little closer to “this is not the healthiest choice I can give to myself or my children”. America has apparently already said as much by implementing a ban. Europe has gone a step further and banned it from cosmetics.

Now on my grocery/drug store list, I am adding phthalate-free products. At least they made this one easy for us. Products label themselves as phthalate-free right on the bottles. But not all labeling is equal. If a product specifically is not saying phthalate-free, check those pesky ingredients. If it says fragrance that is often a clue that dozens of chemicals, including phthalates, are in there. Move along to the next bottle.

I’m thinking it’s just not worth it to use phthalates.

Because my kids are. They are so very worth it!

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About Sheila's Thinkerings

Happily married wife, happily mommied mom. I am far from perfect but I don't mind. Also I am a wee bit crazy, it's true. Just ask anyone who's ever met me...
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