Lurking Ingredients

Lurking Ingredients

Grocery shopping takes ten times longer for people with food allergies.  We have to read every single label to make sure the food we are buying is safe.  Sometimes it’s not just food that we have to watch out for though.  I’ve found my allergens popping up in places I never expected to see them, especially makeup.  Here’s what I’ve learned about makeup in respect to food allergies… so now when I want to feel fancy, I don’t get a horrendous rash or have to go the the emergency room.  (Yay!)

As much as I love LUSH, some of their products just aren't great for me...
As much as I love LUSH, some of their products just aren’t great for me…

I like to read ingredients for skin products.  I had a tube of lotion that I used several times before realizing it had almond butter in it.  Luckily, I did not have a reaction, and quickly stopped using it.  Now I am careful to read through all those crazy ingredients in tiny print on the back label before buying lotions.  This also goes for lip balms, lip gloss, lipsticks, etc.  You never know what they may have sneaked in there.  Sometimes this requires a little deeper searching (maybe investigate the company’s website to see what kind of ingredients they use.  It seems that a lot of “all natural” makeup companies use ingredients with nuts.  Apparently almonds are great for cosmetics (check out this article on the subject) for people who will not have a reaction after using them.  Coconut is also a common ingredient in makeup from what I’ve observed.

I also try to avoid sharing lip balms/glosses/sticks with my friends.  I worry that they may have used the product after having eaten one of my allergens, thus contaminating it.  For the same reason, I am extremely hesitant to share my own lip products.  This can be a bit of a hassle for me when I do theater.  Stage makeup is often shared by everyone in the cast.  I never mind using my own makeup when I can.  For anyone involved in theater, I recommend learning how to use foundations, blushes, eye shadows and liners, mascara, lipsticks, etc. and applying these on your own.  This way you can use your own makeup and stay in your comfort zone.  Remembering all your lines is nerve-racking enough.

***By the way, I absolutely adore LUSH even though they use nuts in some of their products.  I have talked to the extremely knowledgeable staff at several store locations and have been directed to safer items that they feel are less likely to have come into contact with their nut products.  My personal favorite items are their perfume, hair spray, and lip gloss.  Happy makeup shopping!