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Article: Siloxanes



From the 'Addition Awareness' Series

Siloxanes (suh-laak-sayns) are derived from silicones and are used in many cosmetic products ranging from hair products to lipsticks, moisturizers, deodorants, foundations, sunscreens and more. Their main functions are to soften, moisturize, increase spread and make the skin and hair feel smoother.

Why avoid them?

Siloxanes can have negative effects on both our bodies and the environment. According to the European Chemicals Agency, D4 (a.k.a. cyclotetrasiloxane) is suspected to damage fertility and is toxic to aquatic life.

  • Reproductive toxicity: There have been studies on lab rats showing effects such as a reduction of implantation sites and increased post-implantation losses.2 D4 is a partial agonist, which means it enhances the effect of estrogen. Studies with D5 (a.k.a. cyclopentasiloxane) in lab rats show that there might be potential carcinogenic effects as demonstrated by uterine tumors in female rats.3

  • Environmental damage: D4 and D5 are unfriendly to the environment since they do not break down or dissolve when washed down the drains, resulting in increased toxicity to our water supply and to aquatic life. The bioaccumulation of these compounds in nature builds up in the bodies of aquatic life and is damaging to plant-life.

Where are siloxanes hiding?

Addition Beauty has prohibited the use of siloxanes and will continue to refrain from using these chemicals in our formulations. In particular, we refrain from using D4 and D5 chemicals. This less commonly known group of chemicals can sneak into all sorts of cosmetics, including makeup, soaps, lotions and more. Be sure to always read your product labels to watch out for the following ingredient names.

Common names for D4:

  • Cyclotetrasiloxane with 'octamethyl', 'decamethyl' or other variation in front of it

  • Cyclotrisiloxane with ‘hexanethyl’ or other variation in front of it

Common names for D5:

  • Cyclopentasiloxane with ‘decamethyl’ or other variation in front of it

Given the risk of cumulative exposure of siloxane ingredients in our cosmetics and other personal care products, we choose not to use them! Furthermore, Addition Beauty strives to reduce our carbon footprint on this Earth and the risk of damaging aquatic life. Stay tuned for our next chemical of focus in our Addition Awareness Series!


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