As part of your anti-aging skin care, it's not just what you put on your face that's important; it’s what to avoid that really matters. There are several chemicals to look out for that are not only harmful to the skin and causing premature aging, but they are also highly toxic. Strange as it sounds, these are still used in makeup, deodorants, toothpaste, and beauty products. As part of your anti-aging skin care regimen, these three chemicals should definitely be avoided.

Parabens as Preservatives

Although methyl, propyl, butyl and ethyl parabens are listed as "highly toxic" by various sources, they still continue to be used as synthetic preservatives in cosmetics and deodorants. Studies suggest that they are xenoestrogens, which means they mimic the effects of the hormone estrogen in the body.

The European Union banned parabens in 2003, as they have been shown to be carcinogenic and may be linked to breast cancer. Studies in the UK found parabens in 20 samples of breast tumors, raising the question of whether they are safe to be added to cosmetics, anti-aging skin care products and hair spray. The irony is that parabens are added to products that should help to make us look younger, healthier, and more beautiful, but they may be having exactly the opposite effect.

Petrolatum in Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

Petrolatum is a fancy word for liquid paraffin, a product of petroleum. It is made of two chemicals that are known carcinogens: Benzo-B-Fluroanthene and Benzo-A-Pyrene. Petrolatum is often used in cosmetics and anti-aging skin care creams to seal moisture in the skin, but what it really does is interfere with the skin's natural moisturizing ability.

Products containing petrolatum feel waxy. When applied to the skin it actually blocks the pores, which leads to blackheads, whiteheads and blocked pores. Along with its questionable safety, this is one anti-aging skin care product you can definitely live without.

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Propylene Glycol in Makeup

Propylene Glycol (PG) is the active ingredient in antifreeze, but it is also found in makeup, toothpaste and some anti-aging skin care products. It is commonly found in stick deodorants in higher concentrations than is currently permitted in industrial use! Direct contact with PG is known to cause brain, liver and kidney abnormalities yet it is still used in makeup to retain moisture. Do you really want to apply it to your face as part of your anti-aging skin care regimen on a daily basis?

Check the ingredients list on your makeup, toiletries and anti-aging skin care products and make sure you choose quality products that avoid these potentially harmful chemicals.