So many of you are starting your natural journey. I have to confess, sometimes I forget that. The passion behind this blog is to educate and help you transition into a healthier lifestyle, mainly with the beauty products you choose for you and your family. Sometimes I lose sight of the fact that choosing or making safe products can be a new concept, so I wanted to write a post that will show you were to start. Because let’s face it-a natural lifestyle can be expensive and overwhelming. Beauty companies have fallen so far from what is safe and natural that we literally have to be Nancy Drews in order to find safe products! If you are overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, this is the post for you. I’m hoping to clear the air and make some simple suggestions to get you well on your way!
Infograph courtesy of Ecomom.com
Here’s the thing with beauty products-most of us use them daily. If we are using unsafe products, we are bombarding our bodies with a countless amount of toxins every. single. day. Things that we do monthly, like hair color or nails, while it’s still best to find safer alternatives-do not load our body down quite like the daily rituals like shampooing, brushing our teeth or wearing deodorant. So let’s start here. Let’s change the items we’re using daily or even 2x a day. Changing these 6 products will reduce your toxic overload dramatically and that is something you can feel very good about.
Deodorant is a daily habit for most of us. Deodorant is applied directly above the lymph nodes and adjacent to the breasts. A deodorant that is filled with harmful toxins like ALUMINUM is really going to take a toll because anything applied over lymph nodes has a high absorption rate. A few other harmful ingredients that are often in deodorant are triclosan (antibacterial pesticide), talc (contains asbestos fibers), parabens (preservative that disrupt hormone function), propylene glycol (kidney and liver damage), and steareth (human carcinogen). I personally prefer skipping deodorant. I also work from home and don’t have a significant other to expose to my B.O so I understand that this isn’t an option for most of you! When I do wear deodorant, this is something I prefer to DIY. I use 2 deodorant DIYs through out the day when I need to stay fresh. I use THIS and THIS recipe. For those of you who don’t want to make your own deodorant, there are many affordable options. The most important thing to look for is aluminum free. Try these options:
- Primal Pit Paste
- Nature’s Gate Organic Deodorant Stick Chamomile and Lemon Verbena
- Jason Soothing Aloe Vera Aluminum and Paraben Free Deodorant Stick
It is recommended to brush your teeth 2-3 times a day. If you are using a regular toothpaste like Crest or Colgate, this can be quite toxic for your body and actually detrimental to your teeth. Even though you spit your toothpaste out, it is easily absorbed into your blood stream through the inside of the mouth. FLUORIDE is the biggest concern when it comes to toothpaste. I wrote THIS article on the dangers of fluoride if you want to know more. A fluoride free toothpaste is imperative. Other ingredients in most toothpastes are triclosan (an antibacterial agent that is considered a pesticide by the EPA), sodium lauryl sulfate (produces bubbles but is an extremely dangerous irritant), propylene glycol (dangerous ingredient easily absorbed into the skin and used as a wetting agent and surfectant). Don’t forget saccharin (the extremely harmful sugar alternative that is in most diet drinks and sweet ‘n’ low) and blue dye! I prefer to make my own toothpaste and use THIS recipe but below are a few safe options from Amazon:
- Jason Sea Fresh Toothpaste, Deep Sea Spearmint
- Kiss My Face Gel Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
- The Honest Company Toothpaste Natural, Fluoride-free Oral Care
Ditching perfume is a huge bummer. I’m sure some of you can easily leave it out, but I personally had a hard time with this one. Fragrance is probably the most toxic beauty product you can use. Perfume is something many women reapply often throughout the day. Not to mention-everyone breathing in your perfume is also effected! There is one perfume I use and I’m quite happy with it. Lavanila is safe and has lots of scents to choose from. I also just did a review on Herb and Root. They have amazing fragrances as well. Also, essential oils are easy to use as a fragrance. One trick I’ve learned is to put a couple of drops of my favorite e.o. in the palm of my hand and run it through my hair for all day scent!
Shampooing is a daily task for many of us. Shampoo is massaged in the hair as well as the scalp allowing many more harmful ingredients to penetrate the skin as opposed to conditioner which is most likely applied to the middle to ends of the hair. There are 20 blood vessels, 650 sweat glands and 1,000 never endings in the scalp that make it vulnerable to soaking up toxic ingredients! Shampoos often contain sodium lauryl sulfate which we mentioned earlier but when it is used on the hair follicles, it can actually corrode the hair follicles and slow down hair growth. Just so you know, SLS is also found in garage floor cleansers and engine degreasers. Shampoos also contain propylene glycol. PG is derived from petroleum products and is often found in antifreeze, latex, paint and laundry detergent! Parabens are preservatives that can actually mimic estrogen. DEA (Diethanolamine) is in 42% of all cosmetics but mainly found in shampoos. It reacts with nitrite preservatives to form a potent carcinogen. Dioxane is a cancer causing ingredient and can even be found in baby shampoos!
- Avalon Organics Biotin B-Complex Thickening Shampoo
- Maple Holistics Argan Oil Shampoo
- Seaweed Bath Company Volumizing Lavender Organic Shampoo and Conditioner
- Puracy Natural Shampoo
The good news here is that moisturizing can be so simple. I might actually save you a ton of money here. Lotions are filled with water, preservatives, emulsifiers, thickeners and many, many other random ingredients. DIY lotions can be time consuming and require quite a few products and money up front. I have ditched lotions for the most part and use oil. There is no trick to this-it’s really that simple. Find an organic, cold pressed oil and apply a small amount to your face morning and night and a small amount to your body after a shower. DONE. You’ve eliminated the middle man-water and avoided a TON of toxic, unpronounceable ingredients. I promise, once you get used to using an oil and figure out the correct amount so that you aren’t an oil slick, you and your skin will thank me! If you want to get fancy, add some lavender essential oil!
I’m kind of cheating here because depending on your daily makeup routine, this could mean anywhere from 0-10 products. I personally would start with foundation, then move to lipsticks. Foundation sits on your skin and lip products are often ingested. Mascara is another one to switch out since it will effect the lashes and can get into the eye.
- Foundation-Earth Cream by Dusty Girls
- Blush-Blush by Dusty Girls
- Eye Shadow-Pacifica Mystical Supernatural Eye Shadow Palette or 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Pretty Naked 2 Palette
- Mascara-Lily Lolo Black Vegan Mascara
- Lipstick-100 Percent Pure-Fruit Pigmented Pomegranate Oil Anti Aging Lipstick
I hope this has made things a little easier. Amazon is a total life saver and Thrive Market is a great place to get most these products for much cheaper-think Sam’s but for the natural world! Learn more about it HERE.