Beauty and Anti Aging

Is Makeup Containing Gluten a Threat for Celiac Patients?

Why Celiac Patients Need to Care About Makeup

For most, living a gluten-free life isn't a concern. But when you have celiac, a gluten-free lifestyle is vital to prevent a severe reaction. As more gluten-free diets and eating options have become available, researchers are looking at what other products can wreak havoc on someone with celiac.

Everyday cosmetics can contain gluten such as skin care solutions, makeup, bath scrubs, and so on. Does that mean those with celiac should stick to gluten free products?

Gluten, generally speaking, is a word that defines the specific proteins found within wheat.  Wheat products include emmer, semolina, farro, spelt, farina, graham, wheat berries, durum, kamut, wheat, einkorn, rye, triticale, and barley.  Gluten’s function is to help certain foods maintain their respective shape by holding the food particles close together.  Gluten often makes an appearance in three primary types, known as the “big 3”, which consists of wheat, rye, and barley.  These three types of gluten can be found in a large variety of products, such as breads, pasta, soup, salad dressings, roux, malt syrup, and beer, just to name a few.

From time to time, a patient with celiac disease may ingest gluten inadvertently. For some, if the amount is small, they may be completely fine. For others, the smallest of traces can be alarming. Reactions will vary, but the main concerns include: upset stomach, stomach pain, diarrhea, gas, inflammation, bloating, indigestion, heart burn, skin rash or breakouts, and nerve or. 

While the choice to stay as far away from any gluten product, even makeup containing gluten, is wise for celiac disease patients, the same may not be the case for those who are not sensitive to gluten intake. A Medical News Today article discussed this very phenomenon, when the author, Honor Whiteman, stated that, “there seems to be limited evidence that - outside of celiac disease - gluten is bad for our health.”  Whiteman goes on to say that gluten is not the “dietary villain.” it's made out to be for the general population. 

Personal choice

Deciding whether to use gluten free makeup, shampoos and other personal care products, is a personal decision that only you can determine. The science appears to show the gluten in shampoo and cosmetics is not a threat to those with celiac disease – except for those that may be easily ingested, like lipstick or potentially hand lotion. Researchers have found that unless you have a deep and open wound, gluten cannot absorbed through the skin making topical items acceptable for use, followed by washing your hands. If you choose to purchase non food gluten free products, it's a choice and most people will surely understand.