Different chemicals in skincare products have hit the news lately, and it can be really hard to make sense of what’s real, what’s safe, and what it all means! Let’s decipher some of that here.   

Benzoyl peroxide is a super common and effective ingredient in topical acne medications. It works in multiple ways to treat acne, including as an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. So this ingredient hit the news when reports showed it can turn into benzene, which no one wants on their skin. Well, what’s the real deal? Turns out this only happened in the setting of extreme heat or possibly if very old product, not in the way it would be normally used in skincare or stored. As long as you aren’t heating it up or cooking it, you shouldn’t have to worry about this! So we do recommend throwing such products out when they reach expiration, which is not a new recommendation 🙂 but the bottom line is that we still love our benzoyl peroxide products!

And then came the Fake Botox hitting the news.  ☠️  We know there is fake stuff out there, everywhere. But when this falls in the category of scary and super dangerous, we all need to be informed.

According to the CDCcurrently, at least 22 people nationally have reported serious reactions after receiving botulinum toxin injections from unlicensed or untrained individuals or in non-healthcare settings, such as homes and spas. 11 of these people needed to be hospitalized

Reports state people received injections with counterfeit products or products with unverified sources. Investigation into the sources of these products is ongoing. These reports show how important it is to receive botulinum toxin injections only from or under the direction of a qualified, trained, and licensed individual.

How Can You Stay Safe?

If your Botox is so inexpensive compared to what is typically charged in your area that it doesn’t make sense, then there could be a problem. This could mean they are diluting the Botoxthey are using counterfeit Botox, or they are using unregulated Botox from outside of the U.S. 

Botox, as well as other injectables, such as Dysport, must also be refrigerated. If the product that you receive from someone is room temperature or not refrigerated, you are potentially using a product that is going to be ineffective or cause harm.

The final chemical we will review is one used in haircare products- glyoxylic acid. Not to be confused with glycolic acid though! Glyoxylic acid can be found in hair-straightening products, smoothing sprays, hair balms and straightening conditioners. The risk with this ingredient has been kidney failure!  ‼️  The kidney failure can develop within 24 hours of exposure to the topical product. Hopefully such products will be pulled off the market, but until then they should be entirely avoided. 

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