A few months ago, I went up to my bathroom, and gathered all of my makeup, skin care products, and hair care products, and looked at their ingredient lists. I had just finished reading a book called The Skintervention Guide, by Liz Wolfe, and I was amazed by what I learned! Have you ever looked at what is in the products that you put on your skin every day? Did you know that the chemicals in these products are absorbed by your skin?
I looked up the first ingredient of a popular shampoo brand, and it’s called AMMONIUM LAURYL SULFATE. According to the Hazardous Substances Databank, this ingredient may have a drying effect on skin, and will eventually cause skin irritation. This is the FIRST ingredient listed, which means of all the ingredients, this one has the highest percentage of the shampoos content. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think it’s the best idea to put an ingredient that will dry out my skin in a product that will be applied to it. Another example is BUTYLATED HYDROXYTOLUENE, found in some cosmetics, which can also cause skin irritation. Finally, look at DIETHANOLAMINE, found in some shampoos and even baby washes, it can act as a carcinogen that can disrupt hormones and can impair fetal brain development. Now, imagine looking up the effects of all the ingredients listed in the products we use! It can be exhausting by the way, but very enlightening.
It is much easier to be ignorant, I know from experience, and just keep on using what we are using because it is very well marketed, and packaged smartly. Think about it though; do these companies actually care about whether or not their products work, or what possible harmful effects they might have on people? If a product is selling, and pockets are being lined, in an industry that isn’t regulated, why would they?
So, what can some of these effects of toxicity lead to? In my research, I have found that these chemicals can be involved in things like cancer, infertility, obesity, skin conditions, behavioral disorders, inflammation, and autoimmune diseases.
Now, I’m certainly not telling you all about this because I want to scare you, but I strongly encourage you to start caring about what goes in and on your body, and not just trusting what a commercial with some celebrity tells you.
Ok, so you know a little bit about what is probably lurking in the products you use, now, what’s the alternative? Well, for me the answers are super simple; coconut oil, baking soda, and apple cider vinegar. Coconut oil is the first part of my natural deodorant, my facial cleanser, and what I use as lotion. I use baking soda as shampoo, “soap”, toothpaste and as the other part of deodorant. Apple cider vinegar is a conditioning rinse, and a toner. There are many more uses for these 3 ingredients, but these are my basic skin/body care regimens. I learn a lot of them in the Skintervention Guide I mentioned earlier. There are also a lot of recipes for home made products that you can make out there. As for cosmetics, I really don’t wear make-up that often anymore, but when I do, I wear an all-natural mineral line that I buy at Whole Foods. I love the way it all feels, in other words, I don’t feel it at all!
The bottom line is, what we put on our skin is just as important as what we put in our bodies.
Thank you for reading today! Please feel free to leave your thoughts or questions below.