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Sense About Science Takes Pippa & Gisele To Task

  • by Corrie Shenigo
  • posted at 7:20 pm
  • December 30, 2011

It seems there is no end to the myriad of end-of-the-year lists taking over the blogosphere. From best dressed to best nail polish trends, everything to do with fashion, celebrity and beauty is being ranked against the other. But the super-smarties at the charity Sense About Science are finding it difficult to say what celebrity beauty advice is more incorrect – so they chose to respond to things celebrities have said in 2011 about beauty and correct the misconceptions – without the 1 thru 10 business.

Pippa Middleton and Gisele Bundchen

Two of our favorite corrections are targeted at Pippa Middleton and Gisele Bundchen.

Apparently little Pippa made a statement claiming that cold water made her hair more glossy and her [hair] pores smaller. Sense About Science says “nonsense” and quoting Procter & Gamble scientist Dr. Frauke Neuser responds, “Hairs don’t contain ‘pores’ as such. The outer layer of the hair shaft can be thought of as tiny ‘scales’. If these are flat and sleek then the hair will look shinier as the light reflects off the hair more. If these ‘scales’ are not smooth the surface of the hair is roughened and so that reflectance, and hence the shine, is compromised. However, rinsing with water – whether hot or cold – doesn’t close or smoothen the cuticles.” Sorry Pippa… but you keep on believin’ girl.

Way back in February we covered Gisele’s beauty gaffe that was just absurd enough to make a flurry of headlines. So what did she claim? The supermodel claimed at the launch of her own skin care line that she considered sunscreen to be a ‘poison’ and added “I do not use anything synthetic.” (No really, she did.) Ms. Bundchen (and her publicist) were quick to refute the “poison” remark, but the misstep still made the organizations list.

Sense About Science called upon pharmaceutical scientist Gary Moss to respond. “Cosmetic products – including sunscreens – are regulated and are tested extensively before they are allowed onto the market. Testing applies to both final products and individual ingredients. You might be surprised that you use a wide variety of synthetic materials in many aspects of your life: ‘synthetic’ does not automatically mean bad, just as ‘natural’ does not automatically mean safe or beneficial.” So just because Gisele’s supermodel skin doesn’t see the benefit of sunscreen, doesn’t mean you should toss yours in the trash. Just ask the American Cancer Society.

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