Call us now on 0208 367 9158

Toxic Beauty

Dawn Mellowship, (Gaia Thinking Books), Publication Date: 2 February 2009, ISBN: 978-1856753069, RRP £7.99.

Did you know that cosmetic products contain a myriad of synthetic chemicals that have demonstrated evidence of causing cancer in studies on experimental animals?

Daily we smother otherselves in personal care and cosmetic products believing that they are somehow doing us good, but in reality we absorb up to 70 per cent of what we apply to our skin and most cosmetic ingredients have not been thoroughly tested for safety. The European Union has banned around 1,000 chemicals compared to the U.S. FDA who have banned just 11 per cent of the 10,500 ingredients used in cosmetic products, in the last 30 years.

This is quite shocking given that contact dermatitis, asthma, skin, eye and nervous system disruption, birth defects and cancer are just a handful of the potential negative effects of many of the chemicals we routinely apply to our bodies.

For ladies who love their lippy, a US study conducted by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics on lipsticks bought in several regions in America found that 61 per cent of brand-name lipsticks tested contained detectable levels of the neurotoxin and reproductive toxicant, lead, which has been linked with learning and behavioural disorders, miscarriage in women, reduced fertility and hormonal changes.

Toxic Beauty reveals the darker side of the cosmetics we court and reveals just how 'natural' many of the organic labelled beauty products really are.


"Lipstick, to tattoos; a full spectrum of compounds applied to skin are reviewed. Too little thought, and research, is given to this wide array of chemicals applied to the largest organ of the body. Applications can be 1-2 times a day over a lifetime, in hopes of self improvement and gain in attractiveness. Transdermal delivery of drugs is a growing business for commercial pharmaceutical companies, preceded by mandated safety studies, often lacking in the cosmetic and toiletry industry. 

I commend you Dawn, on this book, drawing attention to a much needed area of efficacy and safety research." 

Kris G. McGrath, M.D., Associate Professor Medicine, Northwestern University.

"This is the definitive guide to being totally savvy about what you put on your skin in the name of beauty, from wholly synthetic to natural and organic products. It covers everything from  greenwashing due to consumer demand for 'natura'l products to nanotechnology. Mellowship has compiled a formidable list that makes you want to bathe in pristine spring waters but her 'take home messages' and information is vital for a generation seeking honesty in the  market place..This is essential reading for anyone who wants to know what is really going on in the skin care world by a vegan who sincerely wants to bring about a healthier and kinder world for all who inhabit it."

Rajasana Otiende  Founder/Editor Lifescape Magazine

Follow us on Twitter