gluten free makeup

Gluten Free Cosmetics

As we come across cruelty free and vegan brands, we come across a lot of cosmetic brands that are going gluten free. Gluten is often hiding in our eyeshadow, lipstick, and other cosmetics. There is plenty of it in skincare products. What’s the deal with gluten-free cosmetics?

I either have severe gluten intolerance or Celiac disease. Right now, I’m waiting on my tests to determine if it’s Celiac disease. My doctor says it doesn’t really matter, the treatment is the same so we’re getting started on that. One of the questions I can’t seem to find a straight answer to is whether it’s okay to wear makeup with gluten in it. 

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Do People With Celiac Disease Need Gluten Free Cosmetics?

Check this awesome gluten free lipstick! 

I found a lot of information saying that people with Celiac disease only need gluten free cosmetics that are going on or around the mouth. According to them, it’s only a problem if the gluten is ingested. There is a higher chance that it will be ingested if it is on or around the mouth. That makes sense. 

However, there are cases of people that have had a reaction or a rash when using products that have gluten. For example, a woman used a lotion with gluten in it. It’s a source of controversy because some claim that gluten is ingested, which is what causes a reaction. Others insist that the gluten is absorbed through the skin, which then causes a reaction. 

Digging down the rabbit hole a bit further revealed that there is no research to support that using products on the skin that contain gluten can cause a reaction in people with Celiac disease. However, there are also no studies to support that it doesn’t. There are plenty of people that have had reactions from using products that have gluten in them, even though they were careful not to ingest them. 

I discussed this with my doctor. I just wanted to know if I could wear an eyeshadow that had gluten in it. Or maybe some mascara. Perhaps, I could avoid throwing away over $1000 dollars of cosmetics that adorn my vanity. 

She didn’t have a specific answer, either. However, she did have an accurate one. She told me that it depends on the person. While one person may experience a reaction from using hairspray, even though it’s only used on their head, another doesn’t. She said she’s had patients that have to use only gluten free cosmetics, and some that are fine using them. The only way to find out is to see how sensitive my body is to gluten. 

Some People Definitely Need Gluten Free Cosmetics

Although that was the answer for people with Celiac disease, there are other people that can’t have gluten that should definitely use gluten free cosmetics. For example, if you have a wheat allergy you should avoid cosmetics that have gluten. Anyone with severe gluten intolerance should avoid using gluten too. 

Gluten Free Cosmetics Labelling

The problem with cosmetics is that companies are not required to label gluten free cosmetics as being gluten free. They also aren’t required to state that a product has gluten or wheat as we see at the grocery store. 

More and more companies are becoming transparent about their ingredients, though. Although they are not required to, cosmetics companies have begun to label their products as being gluten free if they do not contain gluten, which is nice. 

If a company does not label its product as being gluten free, you can check the ingredients list. This might be on the inside of the packaging. When you can’t find it, you can always email the company to ask them. 

When reading the ingredients list, beware of cosmetics that include: 

  • Wheat
  • Rye
  • Oats
  • Barley
  • Avena sativa
  • Malt
  • Triticum Vulgare
  • Hordeum Vulgare
  • Secale Cereale

These ingredients mean that the product contains gluten. 

Make The Best Choice For You

Everyone has to make the right choice for them. Personally, I’m going to use the cosmetics I have and see what happens. If they make my gluten rash all over my arms come back, then I’ll switch them out. 

I can also understand that you might not want to take chances. If that’s the case, check out gluten free cosmetics and product reviews. There are a surprising number of cosmetic companies that are going gluten free to reach people with Celiac disease or another condition that prevents them from wearing cosmetics with gluten in them. To learn more about cosmetics labelling, check out this article on clean beauty!

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