Last week, Red Apple Lipstick contacted me to contribute to “the Mother of all posts” about “Why Gluten Free Cosmetics”. Since I adore and trust their Tested Gluten Free company, I gleefully said YES!
And folks, it is an excellent post. My part is stellar of course (heh! 😛 ), but so is everything else! With insightful comments from Connie of DailyForageGlutenFree.com, Rachel of GFreeGal and research from one of the greatest pioneers in Gluten Free Makeup, Red Apple Lipstick themselves, this is an article you don’t want to miss.
Here’s my contribution:
We all know about the gluten free diet. Those who live with Celiac have become serious Gluten Finder-Outers, scanning long lists of ingredients, calling companies and standing firm on the need to live completely and utterly without gluten in their diet.
But what about gluten from other sources? Have you ever thought about getting it from your makeup?
It’s true: Gluten in cosmetics is extremely common. Wheat acts as a source of vitamin E, a stickiness/holding agent, while Oats are used for skin refinement and nourishment. It can hide in dozens of complicatedly named ingredients, can contaminate even “naturally” gluten free products and is accepted as a normal ingredient for every type of cosmetic, skincare, hair care and everything else. It is everywhere you look, if you take the time.
Now, gluten molecules cannot penetrate the skin as far as we scientifically know, but some products such as lipstick are actually on, in or around our mouths at all times. At some point or another, it’s going into our bodies.
Not only that, but many Celiacs- diagnosed as having the autoimmune disease and not allergic -have inexplicable trouble with gluten when it comes in contact with their skin, causing what would be medically classified as “allergy” symptoms. Such as terrible rashes, eczema, dry and itching eyes, swelling, bleeding sores and more. As always with Celiac, the exact symptoms vary from person to person.
We do not know why Celiacs have issues with topical gluten. In fact, some doctors flat out deny the possibility. Others, such as Dr. Rodney Ford, simply follow the evidence they see in their practices- which is that some Celiacs do have reactions. Perhaps someday studies will be done that can explain it for us and solve the puzzle. But for now, a quick look into the Celiac community is proof enough. Hundreds of Celiacs have removed gluten from their skincare, hair care and cosmetics and found their acne melted away after a few days, their watery eyes cleared up, or their inexplicable and seemingly random headaches vanished.
But even if a Celiac does not have reactions to topical gluten, allowing it to stay in cosmetics is asking for trouble. Every time you apply foundation, don’t let it touch your mouth! When you scrunch styling gel into your hair, wash those hands and wash ‘em GOOD before you eat those hot wings. And lipstick? Pfft, forget it! It’s over and done with pretty much the instant you put it on.
If gluten is in your lipstick, it’s game over- you’ve been glutened.
Sadly, very few companies truly realize the importance of gluten free makeup. They understand that it’s a market and they want to cash in on those desperate to find safe cosmetics. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to turn a profit!! But so many companies are quick to claim the “gluten free” label without really understanding what that means. For Celiacs, this is not an issue to be trifled with, especially in the case of products that will certainly be ingested (such as lipstick). This is real and this is dangerous.
If you are Celiac, gluten free cosmetics are a must, especially in the case of lipstick and similar products. Lucky for us that Red Apple Lipstick is TESTED gluten free, huh?