Friday, June 18th, 2010

Temptalia Asks You


Are there any ingredients you avoid in your makeup/skincare? What do you avoid?  How come?

Temptalia's Answer.

I’m wary of products with seemingly high concentrations or levels of silicone-based ingredients, because my skin always seems to break out into incredibly large and painful pimples that take forever to go away.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

95 thoughts on “Are there any ingredients you avoid in your makeup/skincare?

  1. No particular ingredient, but I try my hardest to stay away from companies that test on animals. Which does not leave me much of a choice..

    • Avatar of Alisha Alisha in WI

      I try to do that too…….I wish they just would stop…at least we have MAC!

    • Leaves you plenty of choices! All Estee Lauder brands/Urban decay/Smashbox/Bare Escentuals/OPI/Essie etc. I go here to check: http://www.caringconsumer.com/index.asp

      Hope it helps!

      On top of me also not buying brands that test on animals I also try to avoid any overly acneic and comedogenic ingredients.

    • Avatar of Nochefairy Brittney

      Me too! I never thought about for a while until I read what they do… it sucks a lot. We have nars, chanel, clinique, mac, and revlon too… the only thing that makes me sad is loreal hip…

  2. Kelly C.

    Silicones for me as well. Any high concentration makes my skin burn. I’ll also echo Claudine about animal testing. Once all the products I have run out, I won’t be repurchasing from such brands. Which sucks, because my favorite tinted moisturizer is from Neutrogena…

  3. Avatar of Micheala Mickee

    Mineral Oil for sure!
    I don’t what it is, but my skin does not agree with it what so ever.
    It’s used quite a LOT in makeup products :(

  4. Kathryn

    I avoid petroleum jelly and mineral oil at all costs. In lip balm (and gloss) and cream, it does not absorb into skin. It is helpful in acting as a protective barrier for extremely chapped lips (ie: cuts and cracks) but it does not actually provide moisture for the skin. Also, after multiple uses it actually breaks down your skin’s (including skin on lips) natural oil barrier and so once it wears off, the skin is actually in worse condition than before. Ingredients such as shea butter actually absorb into skin and provide moisture.

  5. dawn

    Pretty much any product i cant pronounce or never heard of. I’ve gotten away from using products with salicylic acids or just lots of ahas because they seemed to break me out. I stay with more natural ingredients like essential oils or natural acids. I love lush!

  6. krista

    The only thing I avoid is Mineral oil, which is in some skin care products like face creams/lotions. It’s like byproducts of distilled petroleum. I avoid it because it can clog pores and can cause premature aging and is also linked to cancer. So I pretty much avoid ALL Ponds products, because most of their products have mineral oil in them.

  7. Jeeya

    go to cosmeticsdatabase.com and there you can check your product contains what .

  8. AlyxVeee

    I used to avoid anything with too many chemicals, parabens, phthalates, talc, sls etc… I only really try to stay away from parabens now. I found you really cant run from bad ingredients and be a makeup/beauty obsessed person. *sigh*

  9. Avatar of Alisha Alisha in WI

    I look for oil-free…I have breakout prone oily skin.

  10. Liz

    Alcohol…. it make my face goes very very dry and it irritating like crazy if there’s high content.

  11. amelia

    benzoyl peroxide. i have small pimples every now and then but i prefer salicylic acid- benzoyl peroxide literally stings my skin.

  12. Madison

    silicone! breaks me out horribly!
    i love the feel, but it does awful things to my skin!

  13. Ellie

    I try to avoid sls (sodium laurel sulfate) and parabens in my skincare items. I could care less about what’s in the actual makeup, as long as it’s pretty! Oh and that the companies doesn’t test on animals.

  14. Avatar of Shontay shontay

    SPF and any mineral products. I know it’s strange but both break me out horribly, without fail.

  15. Zara

    I avoid benzoyl peroxide completely. I was using Clinique’s Acne Solutions Emergency Gel as lotion, as in I used it all over my face in large quantities. I didn’t know you were supposed to use it as a spot treatment! After about two years of this, I developed an allergy to the main ingredient: benzoyl peroxide. Now whenever I use even the tiniest amount my face breaks out in a red, burning and itchy rash. My bad.

  16. Avatar of Neela Neela

    Anything with aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid), salicylic acid, willow, willow bark, etc. If it even LOOKS like it might contain something chemically related I will not buy.

  17. ect

    Menthol. My skin can’t tolerate it… causes it to become dry, red, itchy/burning :( I don’t like products with strong fragrances either.

  18. Lee

    I get Cystic Pimples from chemical sunscreens so i avoid them in makeup.. and anything waterproof as it usually contains Latex and I have an allergy to latex..

  19. Ashley

    Thanks Christine, that’s really good to know. I never made that connection and I definitely have those monsters pop up from time to time! I’ve been trying some more silicone based products recently to smooth things out–large pores,acne scars:( Anything else I could try? The only two products I avoid (that I can think of)-alcohol and petroleum-possible breast cancer link to petroleum. Info from Dr.Oz-he seems pretty on top of things! I also try to avoid fragrance or any other irritant.

  20. Chiara

    I’ve got a whole list! I’m unfortunatly very prone to skin breakouts, so most silicone-based products are a no-go for me. I also avoid products that contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and formaldehyde. And when a product claims to be ‘natural’ and ‘organic’, i always check the ingredients list to check if ‘all those natural ingredients’ aren’t on the bottom of that list :-p

  21. Wendy

    I try to avoid skincare products with petrochemicals in them (like petrolatum and mineral oil) just because I don’t really like the idea of them. They’re pretty hard to avoid in lip products so I don’t follow it too strictly, but I tend to stay away from facial moisturizers and other products that contain petrochemicals.

  22. Rae

    My skin just so happens to be your skin’s crazy, hormonal half-sister :P It freaks out at the slightest sight of ‘cones — I’ve cut them out of my routine altogether! (And it’s a huge PITA, might I add.) So far it’s been… quite the experience. We’ll just put it that way :D

    • I can only imagine! I didn’t even realize how many sunscreens have silicones in them :(

      • That’s true, but in my case I really love that. Most of the time when I use my Zinc based sunblock, I don’t apply my primer because the sunblock has them and my skin texture gets very even. =)

  23. Jennifer

    I avoid oil. I have incredibly oily skin already, so if it’s oil free, I’m all for it.

  24. Amy

    I really don’t understand the whole issue about silicone-based products, probably because I’d never had problems with them in particular. I do try to avoid moisturizers with SPF (while I apply sunscreen on separately) because sometimes they do tend to be a little oily and thick, thus not being moisturizing enough.

  25. Alexandra

    alcohol and parabens.

  26. Basak

    Parabens,i avoid them,because they cause cancer,especially skin cancer

  27. nicci

    Bismuth Oxychloride – itched like crazy when I tried mineral makeup…never again!

    Mineral Oil – always get a new zit.

  28. nicci

    Bismuth Oxychloride – itched like crazy when I tried mineral makeup…never again!

    Mineral Oil – always get a new zit.

    Talc – not too fond of it…seems to dry out my skin.

  29. I avoid totally silicones, paraffin and parabens. Very often I try to use skin care products with 100% biologic ingredients ;)

  30. Alexandra

    Yeah definitely ! I avoid any bad ingredients such as paraben , phenoxyethanol and all those kind of stuffs. I try to use the most of natural to organic products that I can for instance Origins , Caudalie , Weleda , Dr Haushcka and Sanoflore.

  31. joanne w

    yeah stuff like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide ingredients that are supposed to reduce acne actually cause more on my skin. yeah these types of ingredients are way too harsh for my uber sensitive skin. i tend to stick with more natural ingredients for skin care.

  32. monika-luiza

    I just try too stay away from mineral-make-up as it turns my dry skin into an itchy-patchy mess. Especially foundations. And I also try to boycott companies doing animal-testing, though to be honest I can’t when it comes to mascara :/

  33. Jenn

    I try to look for products that are natural and paraben-free. Oh, and I also try to avoid SLS. :)

  34. Joy

    the testing on animals is kinda stupid anyway as an idea…the biggest concern about face-makeup are the pimples and I don’t think animals get pimples…the bad thing with makeup is that even if you think you got the right ingredients it can still break you out like crazy

  35. Mary Joyce

    I stay away from products that has ‘cones as their primary ingredient. It breaks me out big time.

  36. tg

    I try to keep silicones out of my skincare and foundation. Parabens I try to keep out of skincare, haircare and always, always lip products. I can’t give up some of my favorite eye shadows or concealer that have them in there, so I’m willing to make a small concession.

    I have to say I’m really tired of looking at every single bottle of something in search for those stinking parabens. If some companies can find ways around them, why can’t they all?

    Oh, and I only wear 3 Free nail polish and also try not to buy any with formaldehyde resin, which they say is safe, but I’m still leery of.

  37. I stay away from anything that has animal products in them like Carmine, bee’s wax, and stuff like that because I am a vegan! I also stay away from companies that test on animals, because it is just wrong!

  38. Avatar of Niki Nik

    i have always avoided oils, but maybe my skin was more sensitive then i thought! my skin is perfect now but it has taken 16 or 17 years for that!!

  39. Avatar of Donna Donna

    The first one that comes to mind is menthol…. It’s adverstised to create a ‘cooling sensation’, but any product I pick that contains menthol goes right back on the shelf!

    Here’s a great link: http://www.cosmeticscop.com/ingredient_dictionary.aspx?

  40. Scientific Housewife

    I can’t wear any mineral makeup with bismuth oxychloride in it because it makes my whole face get little bumps. That leaves out most popular mineral makeup brands :(

    • robyn

      that happened to you too?! i was so confused! i tried bare minerals and for the first couple days i LOVED it…then all of the sudden, i now have little bumps all over my face. tiny tiny ones that i never had before. ive had slight acne for a while now but never tiny bumps. what have you been doing for it?

  41. Avatar of luna lunamaris

    I try to avoid comedogenic ingredients. but it’s not easy, as there are many lists on the internet which differ from another. and if it says on a product “non-comedogenic” it seems to mean nothing..

    • A lot of terms like non-comedogenic aren’t as regulated as we’d like :(

    • Ashley

      Non-comedogenic on a label is basically useless. What breaks me out won’t necessarily break you out. For instance, coconut oil is generally known for being very comedogenic, but I’ve seen a lot of people online talk about using it in their skin care routines. And mineral oil is rated a 0, meaning it’s not supposed to be comedogenic at all, but a lot of people claim that it breaks them out.

      It’s a lot smarter to simply look up the ingredients in a product on a comedogenic list such as this one:
      http://www.dermaxime.com/acne-comedogenic-ingredients.htm
      Even then, it’s not a guarantee that you won’t break out by avoiding certain ingredients! Like squalane, it’s barely comedogenic, but it breaks me out, as with all other olive-based ingredients.

  42. Avatar of Katie Katie

    I can’t do silicone either, at least not a lot of it — especially in the winter. When I tried Photofinish, the skin around my nose and chin flaked so bad, that it took weeks to heal. I use the NARS primer now and love it.

  43. L1onQueen

    Ditto Christine. The silicone in a lot of products give me the same GINORMOUS, painful pimples. Yuck!

  44. Tiffany

    I’m not allergic to any particular ingredient. But I do not purchase pigments that aren’t eye or lip safe.

  45. Catherine

    About a year ago, I started getting rid of products that have parabens and only purchase products without parabens now. It’s pretty easy, except for a brow pencil. I only like pencils to fill in my brow and I have not been able to find a paraben-free brow pencil.

  46. Wendy

    silicone-based for me as well!!
    heard from someone, those who have sensitive skin can’t use silicone based products.

  47. RedWeatherTigerD

    I prefer to avoid animal-tested products, too. In terms of ingredients, I absolutely avoid shea butter in face products, as it breaks me out like mad. I also try to stay away from petroleum-based lip products, though that’s harder to do.

  48. Krys

    I stay away from bizmuth (spelling?) Its in some bare essentials products and it makes me itch! Silicone is another one, breaks me out & clogs my pores :(

  49. Dee

    anything with citric acid listed as one of the first few ingredients…I’m allergic. I used a moisturizer that contained it without realizing and my face broke out in tiny bumps.

  50. karina

    silicone- i break out like crazy

  51. Avatar of LU LNU

    I mainly get products that are oil-free because I have combination skin, my tzone is very oily. As far as skincare, I also look for things that are for acne prone skin; I like using a combination of products that have salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, they really help my breakouts disappear.

    • Avatar of LU LNU

      OH! I always look for alcohol free! It dries out my combination skin, even my oily tzone, which is weird.

  52. Kirsten

    Mineral oil

  53. Eileen

    Bismuth Oxychloride. It gives the glow and sparkle to many mineral type make-ups but it turns my skin bright red wherever it comes in contact. I’m always reading ingredient labels and checking to make sure it’s not being used.

  54. i have to avoid things with SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) in them, its what makes products foam up like shampoo and shower gel. it really sets off my eczema.

  55. Lena

    I try to avoid parabens as much as possible, but with brands like MAC… I can’t resist.
    I also refuse to buy anything tested on animals and anything with non-vegetarian ingredients such as gelatin (I’m not sure how often gelatin appears in beauty products, but just an example from the top of my head). I like to buy vegan products as often as possible, simply because I cannot become a vegan due to allergies to several non-meat protein sources, and buying vegan makeup won’t affect my health.
    Also, I like to avoid mineral oil as much as possible from brands that aren’t as reliable as others, as it is the most highly animal-tested cosmetic ingredient out there.

  56. Hend

    Highly Fragranced cosmetics cause me redness :(
    also silicone cause me pimples :(

  57. I’m acne prone.

    I avoid all the mineral oil, petrolatum stuff as well. Feels like I could have just put on vaseline instead and that’s be just as crappy.

    Isopropyl palmitate – cheap pore clogger
    Silicones – I mostly avoid it in my hair care routine but wouldn’t add a silicone-heavy product in my face routine either(but cyclomethicone is the kind that actually evaporates from skin/hair)
    Talc – just in case
    Cornstarch – feeds bacteria, can aggrevate acne
    Avobenzone(chemical SPF) – Allergic reaction, redness
    Oxinoxate(chemical SPF) – Makes me extremely shiny!
    Apricot kernel, walnuts, or sugar in facial scrubs – scratches, damages
    Sulfates – Only for hair, extremely drying
    Coconut oil – Great for hair but promotes hair growth when used on skin! Do not want.
    Alcohol – avoid for both face and hair products, extremely drying, weakens the skin
    Natural soaps – true soaps can leave soap scum on your skin/scalp!

    I don’t care about parabens, in fact I’d prefer myself some parabens. I hate products going bad soon and starting to grow bacteria!
    I don’t get the fuss about SLS/SLES unless you’re worried about its drying effect.
    Oils can be your friend even if you have oily skin. Like cleansing oils, rosehip oil, antioxidant grapeseed oil etc. Oil-free doesn’t mean it won’t make you oily/shiny or clog your pores. Most of the time, it will.

  58. Ashley

    There are a lot of ingredients I avoid. I avoid chemical sunscreen ingredients in facial products, bismuth oxychloride, added fragrances, added dyes, surfactants, algae/seaweed or anything that comes from the sea, cocoa butter, coconut oil, almond oil, kaolin clay, granulated scrubbing particles (of any kind)… There are a lot of ingredients I’ll avoid, primarily ones that get a rating of 2 or higher on the comedogenic lists.

  59. aquarianrabbit

    - Cyclopentasiloxane: I think this is a big culprit in breakouts for me
    - Titanium Dioxide: nasty clogged pores!
    - Algae Extract, Carrageenan: huge, cystic style blemishes
    - Petrolatum: very drying
    - Mineral Oil: drying
    - Companies that currently test on animals
    - Bismuth Oxychloride
    - High amounts of mica
    - High concentration of essential oils or essential oil derivatives

    I’m picky. =)

  60. KY

    My skin does not tolerate silicone at all, so I stay away from those ingredients at all costs.

  61. Helena

    Parabens. I’m allergic to them, so they make my eyes watery and red, and my skin itchy. Mineral oil is also a no-no.
    Animal testing is number one on my avoidance list, though.

  62. Danielle

    I’m probably alone in this, but I tend to avoid natural and organic skincare products that contain a lot of plant ingredients. I have really bad plant allergies and I have had tried so many products that have given me a rash or hives that I’ve just given up. I still love natural products (I use organic coconut oil for eeeeeeeverything) but there are so many that I can’t use.

    • Christine B.

      I agree with this. They’re are a lot of “natural” ingredients that irritate my skin.

    • Hannah

      Same. I have rather sensitive skin and the worst reactions I’ve had were from natural products. People seem to forget that just because a substance is found in the wild doesn’t mean it’s good for you…

  63. Sari

    I try and avoid any animal by products by going vegan with my cosmetics when I can since I am a vegetarian .

  64. Elizabeth

    Bismuth oxychloride. It leaves my face horribly flaky and gives a weird texture, which takes months to go away. Fortunately Bare Escentuals new Matte formula does not contain it.

  65. Nic

    I generally avoid sulfates in shampoos and facial cleansers. I also avoid anything with a high SPF (anything over 30) because it irritates my skin.

  66. ocelot1

    i try to stay away from any silicones & bismuth (both cause acne for me), products with mint/menthol (they irritate my skin always & even scalp sometimes), ammonium lauryl sulfate (super drying- more drying that SLS). anything with lanolin (huge painful zits- thanks burts bees! they have lanolin in everything it seems! ugh), i try to avoid petrol products, pthalates,most alcohols (again too drying) and i dont listen to anything dr. oz says. he just says to avoid everything & i think its just pretty ridiculous. he sounds like he gets paid to say certin things… i try to stay away from companies that do animal testing as well. whats the point? there are some ingredients that have been around so long why do they continue to have to test them? so stupid.

  67. I try to avoid cosmetics that contain parabens.

  68. Joy

    what sunscreen do you use for your face? what brand? and what would be the things to avoid in a sunscreen? (something that would cause breakouts) Thanks :)

  69. Heather

    GLYCERIN!!! If its in the top 4 ingrediants I brake out so badly!

  70. Katarina

    Menthol. Ahhhhh!!!!

  71. viv

    I can’t use any lip products with wheat or gluten ingredients. I also do my best to avoid beauty products that are tested on animals.

  72. Lo

    I avoid face creams that have oil in as I have spot prone skin. I’ve been using Dermalogica Active Moist Moisturiser, in conjunction with their Multi Active toner and Special Clensing Gel cleanser, and as long as I remember to take my make up off at night, my skin is really clear, plus although they are expensive they last forever, i bought my Dermalogica stuff back in february, and I’ve still got over a third of everything left!

    I also use and oil free concealer-Bourgious healthy touch, i think its called, then just a light sweep of MSFN in light.

  73. wallflower

    i’m mainly concerned about parabens, especially if the ingredient list of a product list like 3-4 types of them! that always sounds pretty scary to me.
    especially now that there are more and more organic, completely paraben-free products that work just as well. but still, it really narrows down the number of products i can consider to buy which i don’t really mind because it makes decision so much easier from the beauty product-overload.
    i also don’t wanna support animal testing companies by any means but sometimes it is very hard because you don’t always know if a brand does is or not, and sometimes you just cannot resist buying from certain brands that make high quality products (eg. Lancome) in spite of their cruel practices.
    i also don’t like very heavily fragranced skin and lip products because the stong smell can be very distracting and heavy perfume is not even necessary but it’s just another artifical thing in the product.

  74. Christine B.

    “parfum” has to be near the end of the list or not there at all. Anything beginning with “Isopropyl” and also “corn starch” because they make me break out.

  75. Lilac

    Phtalate
    Triethanolamine (very aggressive conservation agent)
    Formaldehyde and related agents
    Mineral Oil / Paraffin
    ALS / SLS
    Silicones in hair products
    Lanolin (not bad in general but I react to it)
    Aloe Vera (bad reactions, though that might be an invididual reaction)
    Parabens if possible
    EDTA because I learned that it´s very difficult to ever filter out of the water later on and I don’t think that cosmetics should include ingredients which pollute the place we depend on – but then that is true for many other ingredients, such as mineral oil and silicones, too, unfortunately.
    What I also dislike are sunscreen in products like perfumes, nail polish etc, they are listed there, too, to save the product? But people will inevitably get in contact with the sunscreen then as well.

  76. Sunshine

    I avoid glycerin, glyceryl and mono-, di- and tri-glycerides. Not sure what source of it is intolerable for me because some glycerin products agree with my skin but most others do not. Most likely, I’m allergic to unrefined glycerin in particular, which is used in most products intended for U.S. market. Unrefined ingredients (not pure of contaminants to a certain degree) are prohibited in skincare and cosmetics for European market and pretty much the rest of the world but U.S. I’ve never had previous problems with glycerin or any other ingredient while living in Europe. Maybe it’s a climate thing though. Anyways, unrefined glycerin contains traces of petroleum and liquid soap used for glycerin production as well as other chemicals that are not even supposed to be there. Some companies are using vegetable-derived glycerin these days but it may still contain traces of other things including soap if it’s not purified. Many companies have no clue whether it’s purified or not. My skin improved dramatically after I started excluding glycerin and -glycerides from skincare, makeup, foods and even toothpaste products. The only soap I use now is Dove for sensitive skin. Also, I avoid bismuth oxychloride when it’s one of the main ingredients.

  77. Erica

    silicone is a no no for my skin. also, I use no sulfates,alcohol,or any ingredient ending in cone, as its horrible for my hair.

  78. Halo

    I don’t use animal tested products I try to stay away from silicone and talc

  79. Hannah

    I definitely try to stay away from silicone too, it gives me huge, painful pimples and millia.

    I also try to stay away from brands that test on animals, but some products I cheat with. :( Covergirl lashblast for example. It’s the only thing I will EVER buy from them, but I can’t live without it.

    Why can’t companies just NOT test on poor, defensless animals? Especially when there are convicted murderers/rapists sitting in jail.