Cosmetics- Deadly lipstick and the fight for individuality
I thought it was altogether too coincidental that I came across 2 videos about the cosmetics industry, so I had to write about them.
The first video from BuzzFacts discusses the fact that cosmetics from lipstick, mascara, and foundation to shampoo, deodorant, and body lotion are a highly unregulated industry. There is virtually no regulation on cosmetics and very little way of legitimizing the veracity of the claims made in many cosmetics advertisements. This issue affects men and women unless men have decided to stop washing themselves (lets hope not). Many common ingredients in toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, etc. contain known carcinogens and known chemical hormone disrupters in your body. That is right I said known. That means that science has shown these chemicals to be hazardous and yet nothing is being done to regulate them. Which means it’s up to consumers to know a lot about chemistry, science, and the art of label reading to really understand what they are putting in and on their bodies. So before you slather on that lipstick think about the fact that the chemicals in it are going to be absorbed through your lips and eaten with your food. Before you lather up that shampoo realize that some of that is going to be absorbed by the skin on your scalp. If you ask me it is worth taking the few minutes to read the label.
The second video is a comedy routine by The Onion that capitalizes a rather disturbing cultural trend. Not only are these large cosmetic manufacturers highly unregulated and using harmful dangerous chemicals in their products, but their advertising is so pervasive that many women do not feel like they can do without them. Socially we have created an environment where women are encouraged to get rid of any imperfections or flaws that might make them individuals and instead to try their best to fit in and cover up anything that is outside the norm of conventional beauty. Worse the conventional Barbie doll super-model beauty is artificial, plastic, and unrealistic. But we have created a situation where women are subconsciously fed a message that if they look like a supermodel they will be successful and everyone will like them. Your everyday woman should realize that supermodels have large disposable incomes to spend on expensive products, can afford to exercise all day because its their job to look good, can afford personal chefs, and probably look the way they do because of their genes not their jeans or any miracle cosmetic product.
In short the two video together show a culture that encourages women to mask themselves with harmful chemicals in order to meet an unrealistic standard of artificial beauty. To see both videos follow these links: