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Discussion Starter #1
A little while ago I was desperate for any kind of cheap cosmetic. I looked high and low on my bookshelves, searched desperately across the internet, and marveled at how much people praised petroleum jelly. It seemed it could be everything from lip gloss and make up remover to a replacement for grease. I was thrilled - I knew I had some petroleum jelly in the bathroom cupboard. But I was also suspicious. Was this too good be true? So I delved just a little deeper about this miracle natural product. Surprise, surprise there was a potential catch. I found out that it could cause cancer in women if it came in too much contact with their skin. So much for lip gloss and make up remover. Any thoughts on this?
 

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Petroleum Jelly is not nearly as good as everyone says. Petroleum products provide their own "moisturizer," but in a way that strips your skin of its natural moisture. What ends up happening is that you need the petroleum jelly to keep your skin "moisturized." It really is more the equivalent of "greasing" your skin. You'll find that after using petroleum products, when you're not using them your skin is even MORE dry than it was before. Not only that, but studies lately have been showing petroleum derivatives to be a carcinogen.

A good natural alternative is beeswax. Straight beeswax, of course, is too hard to use in such a capacity. But look for products that are beeswax based. A good choice is something that combines beeswax and cocoa butter, for this reason: Cocoa butter melts at skin temperature, so it sinks in deeper. Beeswax by itself is great at sealing moisture in, but it doesn't sink in very deep because of its high melting point. So the two together make a great combo. One sinks in and the other "seals the deal"
 

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I agree, beeswax is much better. Petroleum jelly is a by-product of oil production so it's really garbage.
 

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and my grand-mother lived 'til she was 95 and she swear by it, back in her "time" they had nothing else to put on their faces but Vasoline and for her age, she didn't have that many wrinkles and she did not die of cancer. Personally I will never put that on my face, only on my hands & lips when they are really dry
 

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I don't think I'll use petroleum jelly, least of all as a type of lip gloss. Maybe I'm getting the wrong idea, but anything that strips away my skin's natural moisturizer is not good to use on my body. Plus, it can probably be more useful as machinery grease! Beeswax is a good alternative suggestion, Bee Beautiful.

I read somewhere that the average woman consumes six pounds of lipstick in her lifetime just by eating, drinking, and licking her lips with lipstick on. I can't imagine a huge difference with lip gloss. Maybe I'm acting over-worried, but I would never put petroleum jelly on my lips. If it can maybe cause cancer, I don't want to consume it!
 

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I agree, beeswax is much better. Petroleum jelly is a by-product of oil production so it's really garbage.
Cosmetic grade petroleum isn't harmful according to most of the research I have done although I agree beeswax is a much better alternative. I will not give up my vaseline though. Its so useful for so many things especially my dry cuticles, elbows and hands. Its all I used as a kid to remove eye make up.

Of course, Freddy I am now going to look it up again for any updated info!!
 

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I would be more concern about what they put in lotions, creams, toothpastes, shampoos, soaps, make-up, eye shadow, etc

Common Hazardous Ingredients in Personal care products:
Guide to Less Toxic Products


Why no Synthetic Fragrances?

Most fragrances are no longer made from natural substances, but are made from synthetic chemicals. There can be as many as 100 chemicals in a single fragrance. In 1989 the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health evaluated 2,983 fragrance chemicals for health effects. They identified 884 of them as toxic substances.
 

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Kind of scary, don't you think? No wonder there are more cases of cancer than ever!
This site also provide a list of what are the less harmful personal care products.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I read somewhere, actually from the same place that I got the lipstick fact, that there are almost no regulations for cosmetic companies. I mean, they can't get away with, like, putting led in their products but they can get away with a lot. Not that I think they're trying to cause their customers to get sick or anything. That would be just plain evil (and, hopefully, completely unrealistic).
 

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Petrolatum, mineral oil or petroleum jelly is really not that bad for the skin. I have not seen any evidence that it causes cancer, is skin irritant, dries you skin out or many of the claims against it. Everything we know about it indicates that it is very safe (contrary to many claims made by some in the "100% organic camp"). It is used in hospitals all over the world to treat burns, skin, and prevent eyes from drying out (often litterally a thick layer of vaseline covering the eye).

The creams that came on the market over a hundred years ago was petroleum jell based, they where gradually made lighther, added water, essential oils and plant extracts. This is actually what many of the Elizabeth Arden creams still contained not that many years ago. My point is that we really know they don't cause any more trouble for the skin than vegetable oils, or fats like emu oil and lanolin.


What petroleum jelly really do is covering the skin with a layer that is lasting and protecting. It prevents skin from drying out, but don't penetrate skin like other oils do. That probably gives both advantages and disadvantages. Most ointments from the drugstore is vaseline based. It can carry medicating ingredients that treat skin.

The advantage of vegetable oils and butters is that many of them penetrate skin very well, they contain lipids that nurish skin something petroleum jelly doesn't. These oils are even better carriers for ingredients that further nourish and suport natural skin processes, because they penetrate the skin and reach the deeper skin layers where the living cells are. Depending upon the oils used, natural oils can leave a much less detectable layer on the skin surface, they are lighter and will not stay on the surface like petroleum jelly.

The lipglosses and lip protecting sticks: Many waxes like carnauba, candelia, sea-butter, beeswax and a few others are much more solid than petroleum jelly, they last better as a protectant of the harsh elements. Again some of the fatty lipids will penetrate the skin when warmed by body heat. Most of theses products contain multiple oils to treat and nurish dry lips, not just these thick waxes. A petroleum based product will just not stay on the lip surface that long, and is much more easily eaten up.

All in all I too come to the conclution that it is mostly the natural vegetable oils that really does something for the skin.
 

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Why no Synthetic Fragrances?

Most fragrances are no longer made from natural substances, but are made from synthetic chemicals. There can be as many as 100 chemicals in a single fragrance. In 1989 the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health evaluated 2,983 fragrance chemicals for health effects. They identified 884 of them as toxic substances.
No synthetic fragrances because 95% of skin care allergies are fragrance and dye related. Synthetic fragrances, or even eau de toilettes based on natural essential oils contain substances known as esthers that can agitate the airways of sensitive persons. If you're allergic to many "fragrances," you are probably not allergic to essential oils. So, products scented with essential oils are less likely to agitate your skin.

Not only that, but essential oils do also have other beneficial properties, such as lavender being antimicrobial (and tea tree, of course, is also antimicrobial), patchouli is good for easing water retention, and chamomile for muscle aches. again, essential oils which have first been distributed in a carrier oil or lotion. the straight stuff is too strong.
 
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