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Microbeads Ban: New 'Think Dirty' App Helps You Figure Out Toxic Ingredients In Your Makeup & Food

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Remember when we told you about the dangers of microbeads in your skin care products?

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These little beads seem helpful when we're exfoliating skin, but they're actually harmful environmental concerns, damaging the purity of lakes and rivers.

Microbeads are often listed as polyethylene and polypropylene. However, many consumers are unaware of the ingredients they use in cosmetics. 

Well recently, Illinois signed legislation to prohibit the manufacture and sale of cosmetics containing microbeads by the end of 2019. Because of the harm that microbeads can cause the environment and food chain, many states are likely to follow.

Until then, though, there is a lack of information to educate consumers on what cosmetic products contain microbeads and other chemical toxins. Since cosmetic ingredients aren't monitored by the FDA, there's no telling what consumers are using on their bodies.

Enter the beauty of downloadable apps.

A new app called Think Dirty is looking to change that. As a product comparison app for beauty products as well as food, Think Dirty provides easy-to-understand info on products, including ingredients and "cleaner" options.

Lily Tse created the app out of a personal project. Her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, so she began to research into the many causes behind it, including "toxic" ingredients in cosmetic and personal care products. She wanted to find cleaner alternatives, and so Think Dirty was born.

"Think Dirty identifies many different types of toxicity," said its founder. "Whether it's cancer-causing, endocrine disruption, neurotoxicity or cause allergy, whether it's vegan or cruelty-free. We also list advisories for some products that have class action lawsuits or recall notices too."  

So how does the app work? Users can either search for a product using the app's database or scan a barcode to see a full list of ingredients it contains. Ingredients are given a rating of toxicity from 0-10. The app also suggests alternatives.

Tse advises to learn the ingredients going into the products you use. "In general, the most controversial ones are Parabens, Formaldehyde releasing agents, petrochemicals, synthetic dyes or fragrance, BHA, Cocamide DEA, petrochemicals and many others."

"Look for USDA-certified since the requirement is very strict and look for products up to 90% organic if possible. Avoid chemicals listed or used - our app is the easiest way!"

Are you an avid microbeads user? Tell us with a note below!

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