How One App Will Change What Beauty Products You Buy
I find it odd that we live in a society where so many people are obsessed with health, whether it be through eating only healthy foods or going to the gym or working on their mental health, yet when it comes to cosmetics, we aren't quite as concerned with what we are applying directly to the largest organ of the body.
Sure, companies are touting that they are paraben free, cruelty free, sulfate free, and the like, but not only are there companies that still use all of these ingredients, but there are loads of others sitting in our body lotions, shampoos, cleansers, and make up products that are irritating, carcinogenic, and even cancer causing. As of right now, it seems like there is very little push to force companies to consider the well being of their consumers and use safe ingredients.
Think Dirty takes ingredient labels that are incredibly hard to comprehend and breaks them down into more digestible terms for the average consumer. You can look up a brand, a specific product, or just scan the bar code of any product in your home or in store. If the item or brand is in their system (which, some are not, so this will help with some of your products, but most likely not all of them), it will pop up with a picture and description of the item, along with a color coded number from their ranking system. 1-3 is green and considered safe for use, 4-7 is yellow and considered moderate (not the safest, but not the worst thing out there), and 8-10 is red and considered to be pretty unsafe.
When you click on the product you are looking to learn more about, you're brought to the Dirty Meter, where the products carcinogenicity, developmental and reproductive toxicity, and allergies and immunotoxicities are ranked from 0 to 10 (0 being safe and 10 being highly dangerous).
Next, you get an ingredient breakdown, including what ingredients are in the products, their level of danger, and everything you could ever need to know about the ingredient, like it's other names, why it is used in products, health impacts, and links to all of the sources they got their information from. If you find out that your product is super bad for you and you are totally turned off, they also recommend products and brands that get safe rankings on their list.
While it's not a perfect solution, since not every product is in their database, its a great way to start familiarizing yourself with the products you are using, what ingredients to avoid in the future, and even what natural swaps may be best for you. Until beauty users start boycotting brands that use bad ingredients and force them to change their formulas, its up to the individual consumer to be vigilant about what they are using and support brands that do everything they can to keep their customers happy and healthy.