What are Nano-particles?

I recall a distinct conversation that I had with Horst Rechelbacher, around 5 years ago. For those of you that are not familiar with Horst, he was the mastermind behind Aveda in the 90’s and had birthed a new company to take it even a step further from botanicals to food grade, non-toxic products. He was my mentor, and my mind was constantly blown up with in depth thoughts and facts when I was around him. He began to start a conversation with me regarding what make-up powder I use. As I proceeded to tell him, because at the time, I thought I was using a non-toxic makeup and looked me in the eyes and with intent, “ Do you know that those particles are going directly your lungs?” That moment was my personal introduction to the controversy regarding nanoparticles.

What is a Nano particle anyway?

We remember that magic moment when our eyes first witnessed the commercials that introduced this new technology and the exciting visions of no smudge lipsticks lasting for days, fine whipped tinted moisturizers that can cover any blemish in a single touch. This was the introduction to a new era of makeup formulation, introducing Nanotechnology to the masses in products that we use every single day. Nanotechnology is anything at a molecular level, and when applying this to products, it allows manufactures the ability to build a product without using standard protocols to put together natural and or synthetic ingredients. To give an example, zinc and titanium dioxide are two metals that can be used in Nano form in products and cosmetics and with the molecule being so small; the particles can easily be absorbed into our bloodstream and body tissue. What does this mean over time? The stats are still out! What we do know, is we should be aware and make the choices we see fit for our wellbeing.

Why does this matter?

Unfortunately, there are a staggering amount of toxic ingredients used in cosmetics and beauty products that affect our overall health. Unlike other countries, the U.S. has no regulations on the beauty and cosmetic industry manufacturers. Companies do not have to disclose any ingredients they use in their products. Horrifying right? Don’t feel sad, there are great companies out there who refuse to use the technology without long term testing to see how it affects all of us over time and our planet. You can find information on a few of these cosmetic rock stars under the Resources tab.