If there's one thing we all love, it's a store full of shiny, delicious-smelling, beautiful things to put on our bodies. Soap, body wash, shampoo, nail polish, lipstick, lip balm...and MORE lip balm.
The average woman (not that any of us are average!) uses 15 or more personal care products EACH. DAY. I know it sounds like a lot, but quickly go through your daily routine in your head, and you'll realize that tally is pretty well on the money. (Hand cream, hand sanitizer, toner, foundation, blush, mascara...it all adds up!)
Which means. 15 or more chances for chemicals to leech through our wonderfully porous skin and into our blood stream. Seriously. Gross.
Let's talk about our skin for a moment. The facts are the facts:
- largest organ in the body
- assists in eliminating toxins through sweat
- the thinnest skin on the body is the eyelid
- there are over 1000 species of bacteria on our skin!
So many ingredients in the soaps, deodorants and makeup we use are harmful to us, most often as HORMONE DISRUPTORS. The number of patients I see who have been on birth control for over a decade in order to control periods that are excessive or else non-existent is huge. We don't need any more help with hormone disruption! Let's throw away those beauty products that are not doing us ANY favours, and use those that will let our bodies do their work ON THEIR OWN TERMS.
I have compiled a list of the beauty products I love. And. THEY WORK! None of this shampoo-that-doesn't-sud business. None of this lipstick-in-only-earthtones business. These are the real deal. Read on!
1. SHAMPOO - DESERT ESSENCE
The shampoos and conditioners both rock. The shampoos actually lather! The conditioners actually de-tangle! Available at health food/supplement stores. *Delicious different scents - my faves are the red raspberry and the italian lemon.
2. SOAP - DR. BRONNER'S MAGIC SOAPS
What does most soap have in it? Glycerin. And you know what doesn't like glycerin? Vaginas. Yep, it's true. Glycerin is a sugar-alcohol compound. And you know what likes to eat sugar? YEAST. Warm, moist area + sugar = yeast. And then what comes next?.. Itching. Redness. You know it all too well. So do your vag a favour and avoid glycerin.
*My fave is the lavender bar. Beware - the peppermint can be a bit "tingly" on the lady parts. And if you buy the liquid soap, it needs to be diluted.
Admittedly, this is a tough one. I truly find that these need to be on rotation once one brand stops working. So I'll list a few different options that I've tried over many years. Even in my days as a professional dancer, I was using these natural brands!
"THE CRYSTAL" - It seems weird because the reason we don't want to use conventional antiperspirant is for the aluminum content. And then the crystal is 1 ingredient: potassium alum (aluminum!). However, reportedly, the molecules of aluminum in this natural salt are too big to pass through the pores and into the bloodstream. *Must be used on a clean armpit ie. after showers
TOM'S OF MAINE - Soothing Calendula Deodorant - widely available, can re-apply on stinky armpits as needed
SOAPWALLA - Deodorant Cream - I love this stuff! The original scent is awesome! But you have to be okay with using your fingers to wipe the cream on your armpits. And it's a bit pricey. But it works. Available at www.thedetoxmarket.ca
PURDY NATURAL - Funky Fresh - Last but not least, our very own London-made product! I've heard word that this was recently re-formulated to be the "best ever". I love everything about Purdy Natural, so if you haven't made a trip to their store yet, do yourself a favour! www.purdynatural.ca
Natural mascaras are amazing, because there are SO MANY BRANDS out there, and every one that I've tried has worked! I'll refer you to the above-mentioned fact that our eyelid is the thinnest skin on our body in case you're not convinced that you need to switch mascaras. Thin skin means closest to blood vessels, which means easiest for chemicals to get into the body. These are some great brands to try:
- PURDY NATURAL - Again, hometown proud! www.purdynatural.ca
- ILIA - I'll go ON AND ON about this brand in the next section. Available at www.thedetoxmarket.ca
- 100% PURE - okay, full disclosure: I had the luxury of working at The Detox Market when I lived in Toronto, and so was able to try so many amazing natural brands. And this is one of them. The mascara smells like earl grey tea or dark chocolate. 'Nuff said.
5. LIPSTICK - ILIA
A woman eats an average of 3-5 lbs. of lipstick in her lifetime. And do you know what is in a lot of lipstick?.. Lead. Which is a neurotoxin that can be harmful even in small doses. Lead exposure has been linked to: learning/language/behavioural problems, reduced fertility in men and women and menstrual irregularities.
So again, do yourself a favour and throw that lead-laden lipstick out for good.
Admittedly, I have not tried a lot of natural brands of lipstick. Because I am hooked on Ilia and may never look back! The smooth and moist consistency, the range of colours available, as well as the packaging are all amazing. Again...available at www.thedetoxmarket.ca
That concludes my favourite things post...check back soon for instalment #2, because apparently I have 10 more categories to cover to make 15!