I am always passionate about products that are natural and herbal, use zero chemicals and are naturally healthy for me and my babies. I am always reading up about what's good and what's definitely not good about products and ingredients, and in this quest to know more, I have realized that what we many times take for granted, in terms of brand consciousness, just doesn't work right.
For instance, a certain very famous baby brand was recently embroiled in a huge controversy when it was found that one of their products contained carcinogenic substances, or to put it simply, contained elements that could cause or increase the chances of cancer. Why would a baby brand, or any brand for that matter, do that? I was not really using their products, but after this entire thing and after the brand themselves apologised and confessed, there is not one product from them that I have in my home, or will let my kids use.
I was never in the habit of turning over product bottles to read the ingredients until my first one came along. Any product that is launched with those babylicious ads and is packaged in cute bottles may not necessarily be the best thing for your baby. In most cases, it may conceal harmful toxins that can really play with the health of your child. Did you know that infants up to the age of 2 are 10 times more vulnerable to carcinogenic chemicals than adults. Children accumulate up to 50% of their lifetime cancer risk by their second birthday. Horrifying, isn’t it?
So what do you do when you are not sure what's really right for your baby and what's not? You check the labels, and find out all about the harmful toxins that lurk there. And if you're not really sure yet, here's a quick look at 10 of the most dangerous chemicals that are found in baby products, and how they can harm your precious little one:
10 Harmful Toxins To Watch Out For In Baby Products
1. 1,4 Dioxane— Ethoxylation is used to provide mildness to harsh ingredients. It uses the cancer-causing petrochemical ethylene oxide, which generates 1,4 Dioxane. It is a kidney toxicant, neuro-toxicant and respiratory toxicant. You won’t see 1,4 Dioxane listed on the product’s ingredient labels, because it is considered a ‘contaminant’ and is carcinogenic. Organic Consumers Association’s (OCA) study indicates the toxin is present in products with synthetic ethoxylated ingredients, including those with myreth, oleth, laureth, ceteareth, any other “eth,” or PEG, polyethylene, polyethylene glycol, polyoxyethylene, or oxynol, in their names. Baby products with this ingredient may also have traces of formaldehyde, nitrosamines, phthalates and other contaminants.
ANY FORM OF EXPOSURE TO 1,4 CAN LEAD TO SEVERE LIVER AND KIDNEY DAMAGE 
2. Parabens— Parabens can be found in soaps, baby shampoos and lotions. Exposure can cause breast cancer, tumors, reproductive toxicity, hormone disruption and skin irritation. Stay away from ingredients ending in “– paraben.” Many baby wipes also contain the same.
EXPOSURE TO PARABENS CAN DISRUPT HORMONAL FUNCTION, AS WELL AS INCREASE THE RISK OF CERTAIN TYPES OF CANCER, ESPECIALLY BREAST CANCER 
3. PEG — Various chemicals of this family of poly ethylene glycols are found across lotions, creams and shampoos. This carcinogenic petroleum ingredient reduces the skin’s natural moisture, increases the appearance of aging and leaves you vulnerable to bacteria. Look out for PEG on the baby product label.
EXPOSURE TO PEG CAN INCREASE CHANCES OF CANCER, ESPECIALLY BREAST CANCER 
4. Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) — This harmful ingredient, recognized as one of the most harmful ingredients in personal care products, is used to give soaps, shampoos and toothpastes that foamy appeal. This irritant can be extremely harsh on a baby's delicate skin and can keep their eyes from developing optimally. It can damage the immune system, causing separation of skin layers and inflammation of the skin. Just to give a comparison, it is also found in car wash soap, engine degreaser and detergents.  
EXPOSURE TO SLES CAN CAUSE RASHES, SKIN IRRITATION AND VARIOUS ALLERGIES 
5. Mineral Oil— Mineral oil is a cheap byproduct of petroleum processing and acts like a plastic wrap on the skin. In some cases, baby oil contains a combination of mineral oil mixed with fragrance.
EXPOSURE TO MINERAL OIL CAN CAUSE IRRITATION, REDNESS OR STINGING 
6. Fragrance— Many baby products such as body powder, baby wash, shampoo, lotion, diapers contain fragrance. There is evidence that exposure to fragrance leads to asthma, causes neurological, skin, respiratory and eye damage too. Avoid any product that lists fragrance, perfume or parfum. 
7. Talc— Talcum powder is made from talc that may be contaminated with asbestos fibers causing respiratory toxicity and cancer. USGC study has proved that even asbestos-free talc is toxic and carcinogenic. This powdered mineral is often added to baby powder, even though it is a lung irritant. 
8. Phthalates— Fragrances mainly contain Phthalates that are often not listed in the labels. The shocking side effects include damage to kidneys, liver, birth defects, decreased sperm count and early breast development in girls. Look for labels which read “phthalates-free” or “no phthalates”. 
9. Preservatives – Some preservatives such as benzoic acid can generate benzene. Benzene is a proven carcinogen associated with leukemia and other blood cancers. These preservatives are added to baby shampoo and baby lotions.
10. Octinoxate — While it’s imperative to make sure that babies are protected against harmful UVA/UVB rays, it’s equally important to make sure that the sunscreens we use are free from these harmful toxic chemicals. Research has proved that these chemicals are endocrine disruptors and are linked to endometriosis and reproductive problems.
Each time you pick up a product for your baby, or even for yourself, do check the labels. If you find something that you don’t understand or can’t pronounce, better stay away or buy it only after you’ve done your research. Make sure you #readthelabel and give your babies the best, because they deserve nothing less than that.
- Debolina Raja
- Debolina Raja
And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ
Happy Parenting!!!! Debolina Raja