Look on the back of your shampoo, conditioner, or styling gel and you will likely see one or a few of these ingredients. Polyquaternium- 10, Polyquaternium-7, Polyquaternium-11, Polyquaternium-37, Polyquaternium-51, Polyquaternium-55, Polypropylene, Carbomer, Silicones, PVP/VA copolymer…and many more. Look familiar? They can be used for gelling, holding, or adhering to the hair to make it more manageable.
These chemicals are all synthetic polymers. They are man-made polymers, chemicals made of a large number of similar units bonded together, typically derived from petroleum oil. The more typical name for these chemicals? PLASTICS.
Not only are we finding that plastics can be hormone mimicking and therefore cause health issues, they also can harm our environment. The problem of plastic pollution is becoming well known. Which is very good! There has been lots of studies done that have shown that synthetic polymers, plastics, are now one of the most common and persistent pollutants in ocean waters and beaches worldwide.
- Between 1970 and 2003, plastics became the fastest growing segment of the U.S. municipal waste stream, increasing nine-fold.
- Marine litter is now 60-80 percent plastic, reaching 90-95 percent in some areas.
- Plastic is harming marine life, including albatross and other seabirds, who ingest plastic. Sea turtles also ingest plastic bags, fishing lines, and other plastics.
- Plastics are known to absorb pollutants, creating unknown health hazards.