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Weird Ingredients You Never Believed Were Used in Cosmetics

Makeup and familiar cosmetics have been marketed for centuries. In the days gone by, beautifiers were generally quite dangerous and could also be lethal. The use of kohl by Egyptian women to darken their eyes is documented. During the 19th century, women would often use carbonate in combination with lead oxide as a method to develop a whiter skin and use belladonna to create a sparkle in the eyes.

Beautifiers are intended to enhance the attraction and make one better looking. Unfortunately, the ingredients that are used in cosmetics are not often the most attractive. Some of the ingredients are quite common while the others are used occasionally. However, it may be safe to assume that these ingredients are not the ones you possibly think are in your bag of beautifiers. Beginning to wonder what these weird ingredients are? Keep on reading to understand more about them.

Waste Cooking Oil

Experts, as well as cosmetic lines, have discovered that with the use of waste cooking oil they can create a certain type of surfactant which can then be included with cosmetics. Wondering how it can make you better looking? Seemingly, the surfactant aids in the regeneration of damaged skin. Quite a few cosmetic companies are obtaining cooking oil which is slated to be discarded from fast food establishments and cafés. This may seem as crude but if the waste cooking oil can be used for a good purpose, cosmetic manufacturers are prepared to do it.

Intestinal Waste from Whales

The decorative word for vomit from sperm whales is ambergris and the ingredient is coveted by cosmetic giants. It’s a natural and very rare byproduct of the whale’s squid-based diet and because it is not easy to come by, its uber-expensive! Exclusive perfume manufacturers like Lanvin and Chanel make use of this substance to ‘latch’ the fragrance on to human skin.

Crushed Beetles

The carmine red color in most dyes which are used in our cosmetics originates from Cochineal beetles that are initially seeped in hot water, dehydrated and thereafter crushed to provide that indulgent red color. The color is used in quite a few cosmetic products including hair colors and lipsticks. You will not be told about the beetles as it is likely to be mentioned in the ingredients, under the pseudonym Carmine.


Have you seen the names ferrous oxide, pigment 6 brown, pigment 101 red or some such variant as ingredients in cosmetics? You will be better off understanding this is basically rust. It is the ingredient that gives cosmetics like calamine lotion it’s pink color.

Bone Marrow From Chicken

Bone marrow from chicken is one of the many ingredients that are being used by cosmetics manufacturers. It is believed that bone marrow from chicken contains high levels of glucosamine which is beneficial to the skin because it can promote healthy growth of the skin for a youthful appearance. The ingredient is also considered an anti-inflammatory and is used in the production of moisturizers and face creams.

Fish Scales

Ever tried cosmetics with a shimmer? It’s possible that you may have used lipstick and nail polish along with lotions of such kind. The beautiful shimmer you were wearing was possibly derived by using fish scales. It is known as Pearlescence and is the shiny substance which has a silvery hue which is normally found on fish scales. Manufacturers of cosmetics are using them to provide glow and shimmer desired by customers. Pearlescence is generally obtained from herring and is perhaps one of the most fortified fish byproducts in the world.


Wonder what is albumin? It is commonly known as egg white and is glutinous with the ability to tighten efficiently when shriveled. It is for this reason that it is used in many products which are beneficial for skin firming. You shouldn’t be concerned about this because by the time albumin is processed for the application it will be nowhere close to resembling your breakfast.

Sheep Wool

Lanolin is a regular substance which can repel water and is found naturally in sheep’s wool. It also has a number of derivatives which are extensively used in high-value beautifiers to render a preventive production to the chapped skin, alleviate dryness and to provide moisture. Who knew that the humble sheep can help us look our gorgeous best?

It is quite possible that you may never have considered that the cosmetics you were using contained any of the ingredients mentioned above. Now that you are better informed, you may prefer to use brands that don’t use these ingredients. Vegan cosmetic products are one viable option for you.

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