Chances are, you have some Vaseline in your bathroom cabinet. It is considered a remedy for dry lips, diaper rash, and dry skin by millions of people. Unfortunately, Vaseline may be causing more harm than good.
What is Vaseline (aka Petroleum Jelly)?
Petroleum jelly, more commonly known as its brand name, Vaseline, is produced as a byproduct of the process of refining oil.
Originally, it was found at the bottom of oil rigs during the 1800’s. Since it is a byproduct of refined oil, it is neither sustainable or environmentally friendly.
How Does Vaseline Petroleum Jelly Work?
Petroleum jelly creates a protective barrier to help hold moisture in the skin. It is commonly found in baby products and lotions.
Because it creates a waterproof layer on the skin, it can also block pores and trap bacteria and residue. Applying it to burned skin can trap heat in the skin and slow down the body’s healing process.
4 Reasons Why Vaseline is Bad for You
Along with these issues, there are four other reasons you should consider avoiding Vaseline:
1.) It Has Harmful Hydrocarbons
Since the skin cannot process petroleum jelly, it sits on the surface of skin until it finally wears off. This means the body cannot gain any benefit from using it. A study completed in 2011 suggested that hydrocarbons found in Vaseline are one of the greatest toxins to the human body.
2.) It Promotes the Breakdown of Collagen
The barrier that Vaseline creates on the skin prevents the skin from being able to absorb nutrients and breathe. This can force the skin to pull the nutrients and moisture it needs from itself and lead to the breakdown of collagen (a compound responsible for keeping skin firm and healthy).
3.) It Can Encourage Estrogen Levels to Become too High
When the body’s levels of estrogen (a key hormone) are too high but levels of progesterone (another key hormone) are low, it is known as estrogen dominance. This condition has been linked to a variety of issues including autoimmune conditions, allergies, menstrual issues, and infertility. Vaseline contains xenoestrogens – chemicals that mimic estrogen in the body and can create problems.
4.) It Can Lead to Pneumonia
If small amounts of Vaseline are inhaled, it can build up in the lungs and lead to a rare condition known as lipid pneumonia. Since the body cannot break it down, it can cause serious lung inflammation.
Healthier Vaseline Substitutes
There are numerous natural alternatives to petroleum jelly that are far healthier. If you are interested in protecting your health, consider watching the video below or testing out one of the following options:
- Shea Better – This unrefined shea butter is rich in vitamins, including A, E, and F, and fatty acids that help moisturize the skin. It also helps control inflammation and promote the production of collagen.
- Beeswax – This 100% organic beeswax makes an excellent alternative to petroleum jelly. It easily blends into homemade beauty products such as an all-natural body lotion or lip balm that will naturally help protect the skin.
- Coconut Oil – This organic extra virgin coconut oil is packed with health benefits. It helps nourish and pamper the skin with its lauric acid, anti-inflammatory compounds, and fatty acids.
- Cocoa Butter – This 100% pure and raw Cocoa Butter is loaded with fatty acids and antioxidants. It is also thought to help slow down signs of aging.
- Alba Un-Petroleum – As seen in the video bellow, Alba Botanica Un-Petroleum provides a rich moisture barrier to protect skin from chafing and irritation while offering petroleum-free hydration that has 100% vegetarian ingredients and is formulated with pure plant oils and all botanical waxes.