If A Product Is All Over Instagram Or In All Of Your Friends Medicine Cabinets Should You Be Using It Too Welcome To Do You Really Need A New Series Where We Discuss With The Help Of Some Experts How To Determine Whether Or Not A Trendy Or Divisive Product Really Belongs In Your Skin Care Routine Today Were Discussing Gluten
In the interest of being transparent and to ride the clean beauty wave more and more beauty brands are getting into the habit of listing the bad ingredients that their products are free of on the packaging. Often, youll see parabens, phthalates, and artificial fragrances on these lists the usual suspects. A less common one, but one that sticks out, is gluten. If youve seen a gluten-free claim and thought to yourself, What? Why the heck is there gluten in beauty products?, well, same.
As it turns out, sources of gluten are used in skin care as conditioning agents, and in hair care to thicken and strengthen.
If youre already eliminating or limiting gluten from your diet, it may seem like a good idea to also cut it out of your beauty routine. But before you denounce gluten in the beauty category, read on to hear what the experts have to say, and to learn if the ingredient could actually affect you in any negative way.
What forms of gluten are found in beauty products?
Ingredient labels on products with gluten might include some of these terms: Wheat, gluten, barley , malt, rye or triticum. Triticum is Latin for wheat and skin care products might use this term instead of wheat, says Dr. Debra Jaliman, an NYC-based board-certified dermatologist and assistant professor of dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York.
So should you be using gluten-free skin care?
Why Is Gluten Used In Beauty Products
Gluten is a protein that is commonly found in foods containing wheat, barley or rye.
A potential allergen, it is made up of molecules that are too big to be absorbed through the skin but, because research has linked wheat protein to increasing skin firmness and restructuring damaged hair follicles, it is often added to cosmetics and skincare products in the form of Hydrolysed Wheat Protein but can also found under a variety of other names.
Do Celiacs Need Gluten
For me, yes, Ive chosen to use gluten-free makeup and body products. Gluten really irritates my eyes and skin, but I dont live with DH like many others do .
For those with DH, they have to keep gluten off their skin no matter what. For those of us with celiac disease, who dont react to gluten on the skin, the question is: Do I need to stay away from it? Does it really matter?
Since gluten tried its best to destroy many beautiful years of my life, I have no desire to do with it. In fact, it would suit me just fine if gluten crawled into a deep dark hole and never found its way out. That being said, in truth, its not an emotional decision as much as the fact that I dont want to ingest any beauty products with gluten during my daily routine accidentally.
Its way too easy to inhale my hairspray as I try to tame my hair into submission or swallow my conditioner as I try to shave and wash my hair at the same time in a rush for a hot date with my man. So when people ask if they need gluten-free cosmetics, I always share that its my opinion that your lipstick, lotions, lip glosses, hair sprays, hair gels, shampoos, soaps, conditioners, etc. body care products and skincare products, in general, should use gluten-free ingredients.
Has it been easy? Nope. Worth it? Yup. Cause now, I can bite my lip if I am nervous or spray my hair to my hearts content without a worry in the world. I do my best to avoid allergic reactions by minimizing my exposure to gluten.
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Does Lipstick Contain Gluten
There are many brands of lipstick, lip balm, lip gloss, or lip products in general that do contain gluten ingredients. Gluten or gluten-derived ingredients are used to improve texture and moisturize. Luckily many brands are gluten-free certified, and others that advertise as gluten-free. If youd like to know which those brands are, scroll to the top of this article, where I give you a comprehensive list of brands suitable for Celiacs or those with gluten allergies.
Do Skin Care Products That Contain Gluten Actually Pose Any Risk For Those With Celiac Disease
Skin acts as a protective barrier against external harms such as bacteria, chemicals, and UV rays. It is the largest organ in our body and makes up 16% of our body weight. For a substance to penetrate skin, it needs to be less than 500 daltons in size . Since gliadin is approximately 631 daltons, it is too large to penetrate the skin.1
Dr. Alessio Fasano, Medical Director of the Center for Celiac Research, University of Maryland states, If you have celiac disease, then the application of gluten-containing products to the skin should not be a problem, unless you have skin lesions that allow gluten to be absorbed systemically in great quantities.2 An example of this would be putting a large amount of a gluten-containing product into a deep wound with exposed tissue.
Lip balm, lipstick, and other products used near the mouth have a risk of ingestion and therefore require caution in their use. Individuals should also wash their hands after applying skin care products and before eating. For young children, avoid putting products containing gluten on an area of a body that the child may put in his or her mouth.
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What Brands Of Makeup Are Gluten
I have classified the products in this article into 3 categories:
1. Gluten-free Certified
Its a process to ensure that a given food, drink, or supplement isnt unsafe for people with celiac disease. Consumers are reassured that there is third-party oversight of the manufacturers claims and processes. Several programs give out this certification, and each has its own criteria to ensure safety for consumers.
Products in this category offer most of their line as gluten-free certified and label them appropriately. The other products are advertised as gluten-free.
2. Products advertised as Gluten-free
These are products that are manufactured without any gluten ingredients, and even if there is wheat in the food, usually as a result of cross-contamination, it can still be labeled as free of protein. As long as the product contains less than 20 parts per million of gluten, it may be labeled free of it.
If you are interested in learning more about what it means to be gluten-free, certified or not, you can read more in this great article by EatMikeys.com.
3. Dont test for Gluten
These are brands that may or may not use gluten as part of their ingredients, and if you use them, you are at risk. The companies dont test for gluten and dont make any explicit statements in their labels regarding gluten. If you do decide to use these, make sure you take precaution:
Why People Go Gluten
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye grains. It can negatively affect people in a couple of different ways. The most severe condition is celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder often passed down genetically that can damage the lining in the small intestine. If it continues unchecked, celiac disease can cause problems with food digestion and may lead to other issues, such as osteoporosis and infertility. There is no cure, so the only way to lessen the impact of celiac disease on your health is to go on a gluten-free diet.
Its estimated that about 3 million Americans have celiac disease, but the vast majority dont know they have it because its easy to misdiagnose. So while people who have a confirmed diagnosis of celiac disease live gluten-free, there are many, many more people who abstain from gluten for another reason: non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
Gluten sensitivity doesnt harm the small intestine as celiac disease does, but the two have similar symptoms in common: stomach pain and bloating, fatigue, headaches, irregular bowel movements, rashes and more. Unlike celiac disease, theres no specific test to diagnose gluten sensitivity. People who suspect they may have this problemand who have already ruled out celiac diseasecan eliminate gluten from their diet for a few weeks. If they do this and their symptoms go away, that indicates gluten sensitivity. As with celiac disease, a gluten-free diet is the best way to treat this issue.
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Gluten Free Face Wash
- Arbonne runs the gamut for facial care with a cleanser or toner for almost any facial need.
- Ecco Bella products are all gluten-free. They have a fairly broad facial care line which contains not only cleanser , but toner and make up products that are also all gluten-free. Browse Ecco Bella products here.
- Pangea Organics carries not only gluten-free, vegan, and non-GMO facewash, but toner and other facial care items.
- Vanicream is an affordable option for sensitive skin. The formula is not only gluten-free, but free of other chemicals, such as sulfates, often found in skin care that can be harsh on the most sensitive skin.
Who Is At Risk Of Developing A Reaction To Products Containing Hwp
Anyone can be at risk of an allergic reaction to HWP but diagnosed Coeliacs and those with a known sensitivity to gluten are perhaps most vulnerable.
There are also increasing concerns that people affected by Coeliac disease or gluten-intolerance can be vulnerable to gluten cross-reactivity. This is when antibodies, produced to help protect the body from gluten, react against proteins used in food and cosmetics that have a similar make-up to gluten.
For this reason, it is advised that people conduct a patch test before using products containing HWP and consult their GP if they do experience irritation.
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Why Is It Important For Me To Avoid Cosmetics That Aren’t Gluten Free
Over time, you swallow a lot of lipstick, lip gloss, lip balm and even nail varnish if you’re a nail biter. Eventually, your body will start to react to the amount of cosmetics you’ve ingested, leading to intestinal problems. Going gluten free helps balance your health and prevent any problems arising.
Written by Luke Chapman, Content Writer
Do You Need To Avoid Gluten In Beauty Products
But some people prefer to eliminate contact with Gluten completely by extending this to beauty products. Many researchers agree that it is actually unlikely for Gluten in beauty products to be absorbed through the skin and into the bloodstream as the Gluten protein molecule is too large.2 Instead, the risk of consuming Gluten comes more from the potential to ingest it, such as applying hand cream and then touching your food. But the risk is very small, with only a few extremely Gluten sensitive people likely to react to such a minimal amount. However, it is generally agreed that if there is one cosmetic that Coeliac sufferers should ensure is Gluten Free, it’s lipstick.3 Lipstick can be ingested but actually poses minimal risk, although sufferers may prefer to avoid it altogether just in case.
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How Do I Find Gluten In Beauty Products
Reading skin care labels to locate gluten-containing ingredients is beyond difficult. There are just so many complicated ingredient names that are derived from gluten containing grains.
Some of the more common ingredients used in manufacturing skin care that contain gluten are:
- Avena sativa ,
- Hydrolyzed malt extract,
- Secale cereale seed flour,
- Triticum vulgare gluten ,
- and many, many, more!
Beyond directly containing gluten as ingredients, many skin care products are produced on machinery that also processes gluten!
With the difficulty that comes with understanding whether there is gluten in beauty products, it is MUCH easier to stick with brands who intentionally create their items to be gluten-free. Many of these companies even go the extra step to manufacture certified gluten-free skin care.
**Do you want to know more about what it means to for a product to be certified gluten-free?
Keep reading to see a list of trusted gluten-free skin care brands by category and where to buy them. I compiled this list for you by searching manufacturer websites for solid gluten-free manufacturing practices or certification and by contacting customer service directly.
Whats The Deal With Gluten
When our family first found out how common gluten is in skin care products, we had a really difficult time sorting through all the products on the market to find items that we could trust would be gluten-free.
Keep reading for the reasons why someone should switch to gluten free skin care , how to identify gluten in skin care, where to buy it, followed by a HUGE list of gluten free cosmetic brands that manufacture gluten-free skin care by category:
- Face & Body Wash,
- and Shaving Essentials.
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If You Have Celiac Disease And Get A Skin Reaction To A Topical Skin Care Product It Could Be Something Else
Breaking out and suspect that a skin care product is to blame? The culprit might not be gluten. You could have an accompanying allergy to another ingredient in a product, such as wheat. Or you could have another autoimmune skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis.
People with celiac disease may have an allergy or sensitivity to other non-gluten ingredients. A wheat allergy could explain why some people seem to suffer a reaction to topically-applied products containing wheat gluten. Theyre allergic to other parts of the wheat, not the gluten.
Contact dermatitis is a common skin reaction to an allergen. Common chemical irritants include dyes, fragrance, masking fragrance, lanolin, parabens, formaldehyde, and formaldehyde releasers. According to the Mayo Clinic, you use a skin care product that contains gluten and develop a skin reaction, see your doctor or dermatologist to identify the cause. It is possible to have an allergy to wheat or another grain that could cause a skin reaction, but this would not be due to celiac disease.
Minimize Exposure To Toxins
If you have been paying attention to the list of ingredients in your lotions, moisturizers, and cosmetics, you will find that some may contain chemicals of concern such as parabens phthalates, mineral oil, and synthetic fragrances just to name a few. These ingredients can trigger adverse reactions on your skin, such as the development of rashes, dark skin, and even cause eczema flare-ups. Switching to gluten and paraben free products can help reduce your exposure to toxins. However, when choosing a gluten-free product, read the ingredients label and make sure that it does not contain harsh chemicals .
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