All natural products seem to be all the rage now. But just because something’s natural doesn’t mean it’s safe or good for you! At the recent Summer American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) meeting, one of the lecturers and dermatologist Dr. Peter Lio reminded everyone that bacteria and arsenic are natural too!
You may have noticed a number of products containing beeswax… Beeswax is such an interesting compound — it’s made by the worker bees and is used to keep the honeycomb together. One popular line is Burt’s Bees, but many other products contain beeswax as well. Just keep in mind that beeswax contains propolis (used as a glue of sorts in the honeycomb structure) which is a contact allergen — meaning, if you get into contact with propolis, you could end up with an annoying itchy red rash!
So what if you suspect that your lip balm or skin care product is giving you a rash?
Well, 1) stop using it, and 2) take a look at the ingredients. You may want to do some research to see which ingredients are allergens — however, this can be frustrating and confusing because many components of skin care products can lead to allergy! To figure out which ingredient might be causing your rash, you could find a dermatologist who performs patch testing. This is a process where you will be tested to different ingredients to see whether you develop a rash or not.
So, long story short… remember, just because it’s natural doesn’t mean that it can’t cause an allergy!