6.25.13
Resorcinol Hair Toxin

What Is It? Resorcinol is a colorant and fragrance ingredient, typically used to create yellow tones in everything from brilliant brunettes to the blondest blondes. It’s a common ingredient in hair color and bleaching products. Its inexpensive and easily stabilized nature makes it a common villain lurking on drugstore shelves across the country.

Health Risk: There are so many reasons to steer clear of resorcinol, it makes our heads spin: It is a known skin irritant, allergen, carcinogen, hormone disruptor and is severely toxic to the immune system and body’s organs. It can lead to permanent thyroid gland damage, heart rate changes and severe headaches and nausea.The federal government regulates exposures to resorcinol in salons and by professionals, but unfortunately there are not yet any regulations limiting amounts of resorcinol in over the counter products and cosmetics.

how to avoid: Since resorcinol takes on many names, it is important to thoroughly scour labels for any of its monikers. If you see these words, consider the red flag raised:

  • M-dihydroxybenzene
  • M-hydroquinone
  • M-phenylenediol
  • 3-hydroxyphenol
  • 1,3-benzenediol
  • CI developer 4
  • Oxidation base 31
  • 1,3-dihydroxybenzene
  • Resorcin

Non-toxic Alternatives To Try: We love the brilliant colors by Aubrey Organics, which are not only toxin-free, but cruelty-free as well.

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