Are we all familiar with sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) and their harmful effects on health Most probably not, but in this paper, I will show why it will be beneficial to us if we will get to know more about SLS and SLES and that it is only appropriate if we try to avoid products containing either of these two ingredients.
1). If these two chemicals are being used in products that most of us use everyday, we can argue that SLS and SLES must and should be safe and should not be detrimental to our health but sadly, this is not the case. SLS and SLES are actually cheap ingredients, which is why they are commonly used in soaps and shampoos but they are probably the most dangerous ingredients in our personal care products (Kramer, "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate," par. 1).
There are lots of studies which have shown that there are indeed possible ill effects that SLS and SLES may bring to us. Sodium lauryl sulfate is being used for clinical testing as a skin irritant wherein the skin of test animals and humans are being irritated with SLS then healing agents are tested to determine the effectiveness of those agents to skin irritated by sodium lauryl sulfate (Kramer, "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate," par. 2). ...
3) According to a report published in the Journal of The American College of Toxicology in 1983, SLS "concentrations as low as 0.5% could cause irritation and concentrations of 10- 30% caused skin corrosion and severe irritation" (qtd. in "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)," par.4). We should not wait for the time when we experience skin irritation; we can already take an action by throwing out whatever products we have that contain SLS or SLES.
In addition to being skin irritants, SLS and SLES are also eye irritants and can even cause eye deformities. Experimental, acute eye tests have revealed that, a solution of 10 percent SLS caused corneal damage to the rabbit's eyes if not irrigated or irritation is delayed and a solution of 5.1 percent caused mild irritation (Steinman, "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate," par. 6). We are not rabbits but most of us have already experienced eye irritation when we use personal care products like shampoos. If we really want to protect our eyes, let us avoid SLS and SLES containing products.
SLS may also be damaging to the immune system due to its protein denaturing properties (Steinman, "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate," par. 5). Furthermore, SLS that has been absorbed by the body from skin application is said to mimic the activity of the hormone estrogen and estrogen levels are said to be associated with health problems like PMS, menopausal symptoms, dropping male fertility, and cancers in women like breast cancer ("Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)," par. 8). In relation to cancer, SLS and SLES are also said to be carcinogenic because they may cause potentially carcinogenic nitrates and dioxins to form in shampoos and cleansers by reacting with commonly used ingredients ...
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