he average woman can absorb as much as 5 pounds of threatening chemicals each year through cosmetics alone. Research within the cosmetic industry still lacks sufficient data on the many ways human-made compounds may react to each other. As a consequence, studies are showing links between common cosmetic chemical ingredients and irritation, inhibited bacterial growth, premature aging, and, in some cases, cancer in female consumers. Scientists claim that absorbing harmful chemicals are in some cases more dangerous than consumption due to their immediate absorption into the bloodstream. Photo Credit: Fiona Macrae