"In reality, being perfect is so damn boring!" Elizabeth, a new FemmeToxic volunteer shares her insights on the beauty industry
When a thirteen-year-old girl flips through a magazine, what does she look at first? Is it the clothes, the makeup, the articles? No, it’s the models. The sun kissed models, with the hair that won’t budge, the straight teeth and the perfect skin. We all know about Photoshop, and how “nobody is perfect.” But it seems that when me, or any other teenage girl, flips through the new issue of Seventeen or Teen Vogue, the term “Photoshop” doesn’t seem to matter anymore. The model is perfect.
The media seems to be able to get inside every teen girl’s head. They know us, inside and out. They know what types of clothes we want to wear, what type of makeup we are most likely to buy, and most of all; how we just want to be perfect.
But one thing the media doesn’t tell us is the risks of these products we are buying. Most girls aren’t aware of how much harm you are doing to your skin when you apply another stroke of mascara onto your eyelashes. Or how just washing your hair with a simple shampoo can potentially cause health problems.
What about the toothpaste we use? Sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate are two chemicals found in products that foam (such as shampoo and toothpaste.) Every girl has gotten shampoo in her eyes, and all you can think about is the excruciating pain it’s causing to your eyes. But what if you also thought about the damage it may have a chance of doing to your body?
Here’s another. That dye you dye your hair with, well some dyes contain coal tar. Imagine that. But it isn’t only the hair dye that may contain this coal tar, there are also many eyeliners and mascaras. At least products with coal tar in them have been banned from Canada, but there are always those exceptions.
Or there is the deodorant, blush and soaps we use. Many of these products have a chemical called talc in them. Talc has been proven to sometimes have a link to lung and ovarian cancer. It didn’t say that on the soap bottle you bought did it?
The average woman uses about 12 cosmetic products everyday. Imagine how many different chemicals she is vulnerable to. If each product has about 10 chemicals to watch out for, if I do my math right, that’s about 120 chemicals that are being exposed to her body.
So now as I flip through old issues of Seventeen Magazine, I think, is it worth being perfect? Is it worth caking on mascara if there is a chance that there is coal tar in it? Or is it worth buying the “fanciest” shampoo when I might be causing my body damage?
It makes you think, am I going to become a statistic? One of those women that applies 12 different products, exposing my skin to about 120 different chemicals? Or am I going to be the girl who watched what she applies, maybe a few strokes of mascara here and there, and looks at the ingredients in my products?
Admit it, you never even thought to read your blush’s ingredients before applying it. Well, all I can say is: I hope you do now.
But back to my first point, is it worth being “perfect” if you might end up with cancer in your future? This definition of “perfect” still remains a mystery to me, but I guess something are better off unknown.
But lucky for us girls, there are people out there looking out for us. For example Femme Toxic, and this organization has many ways we can help also. For example you can write letters to the government stating what you think is important. Just visit Femme Toxic (http://www.femmetoxic.com/en/action) for ways to help.