Ask Kaylin: Gluten-Free Cosmetics and Beauty Products

Category: , / 8/25/2014
Gluten has been getting a lot of attention lately. If you have a bit of trouble with wheat, barley, and other glutenous ingredients, you're not alone. However, going gluten-free can be quite a big investment, particularly if you are trying to avoid it in beauty products as well. So just what is the deal with gluten-free makeup?

Lynn:
I get bloated when I eat wheat. Does this mean I should switch over my makeup to gluten-free products?

Disclaimer: Kaylin is not a licensed esthetician or medical professional. Please consult a doctor, dermatologist, or other licensed professional if you believe you may have an allergic reaction to wheat or gluten. The following is not intended to be given as medical advice.

Kaylin:
If you think you may have a sensitivity to gluten in your diet, I highly recommend seeing a doctor or allergist to determine if you have a true allergy. Some people are just "gluten sensitive," while others suffer from celiac disease. I encourage you to review the Celiac Disease Foundation website for more information on Celiac Disease.

Determine Your Sensitivity
While many people buy gluten-free products, the Celiac Foundation estimates about 1% of the world's population suffers from celiac disease. If you are diagnosed with celiac disease by a health professional, then please consult your physician and/or allergist regarding whether or not you should avoid gluten in beauty products as well.

However, there are some people who choose to avoid gluten for other reasons. Perhaps you find you feel better without it, and have not had a positive test for celiac disease. If you fall into this camp and your physician, allergist, or other licensed professional has determined gluten to be safe as part of a balanced diet, then perhaps you are only "gluten sensitive."

Gluten-Free Beauty
If you have celiac disease or have otherwise been advised by a health professional to avoid gluten, there are many great certified gluten-free products on the market. Gluten-free beauty products are a wise choice if you are very sensitive or suffer from celiac disease. Companies such as Afterglow Cosmetics are certified gluten-free.

However, if you have not been advised by a health professional to avoid gluten and simply do so out of personal preference, then it might be worth considering the concentration of gluten-derived ingredients in each product. For example, many products cannot be certified gluten-free because of ingredients such as wheat germ oil and vitamin E derived from wheat. The amount of gluten in many beauty products is very small compared to dietary sources. You may wish to conduct a patch test to see if you are sensitive to the product and help determine your sensitivity to any ingredients. Some people may find a different reaction to gluten in beauty products than to gluten in foods.

Making the Transition
If you'd like to switch over to gluten-free products, check out this list of gluten-derived ingredients found in cosmetics and beauty products. Looking for the most bang for your buck? Start by switching out products that you are most likely to ingest, such as lip products or toothpastes. Then consider other products you typically "absorb," such as lotions, foundation, eye shadow, and other products.

If you have celiac disease or are highly-sensitive, seek out products that are certified gluten-free. There are multiple certification programs, such as the popular Gluten-Free Certification Organization. I search for gluten in most products that I review, but I search for "accidentally" gluten-free products as well. Click here to see my list of gluten-free products. (Note: Please check with each company for the latest ingredient lists, as products may have been reformulated.)

Disclosure notice: Please consult a licensed health professional regarding any gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease concerns. Please verify any claims with the manufacturer, especially if you have any allergies or concerns. The author is not a licensed health professional. This post may contain affiliate links.

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