Nasty chemical of the month: Cocamide DEA

Disclaimer: This post is contributed by Planning With Kids partner ecostore.


cocamide-deaThis post originally appeared on the ecostore blog.

As a general rule, plant-based chemicals tend to be healthier for you than petrochemicals but there are a few such as Cocamide DEA that are still worth avoiding.

Cocamide diethanolamine or Cocamide DEA is a modified form of coconut oil that’s used as a thickener or foam stabiliser (to produce long-lasting bubbles) in a range of household products including shampoos, soaps, bubble baths and other body care products. But when you know about the health risks associated with it, you might be happier to have a little less foam.

A report released in August 2013 by an Environmental not-for-profit called ‘Center for Environmental Health’ (CEH) has confirmed that this chemical is used in 98 different consumer goods including shampoos and soaps, despite being listed by the State of California EPA in June 2012 as a chemical known to cause cancer.

What the CEH report shows us is that we can’t always rely on regulations to protect us from unsafe chemicals which means we have to be vigilant, read product labels, find out which chemicals to avoid and short of that – find companies you can trust who have done the work for you. Next time you’re out shopping for hair shampoo and other personal care items, be sure to read the labels of the products you and your family are using – is there any Cocamide DEA in them?