Commonly found in: synthetic fragrance, nail polish, and hairspray.
Concern for women trying to conceive: One animal study showed that exposure to phthalates can alter sex hormones and increase the likelihood of losing a fetus. Another study of infertile couples found infertile women had an increase of exposure to certain types of phthalates. Phthalates have also been linked to male reproductive issues, so you may want to check your man's products for them as well.
Often phthalates hide under the innocent-sounding "fragrance/parfum" written on your ingredient list. Anything with undisclosed fragrance can mask a combination of hundreds of different ingredients. "If 'fragrance' is listed as an ingredient," Leiba explained, "then the company is keeping the chemicals used in the mixture secret."
Products without phthalates to try instead: