Throughout life, your daily diet and lifestyle choices accumulate in your body. By the time you reach your 30s and 40s, they begin to catch up with you and manifest in various ways. For me, they caught up and steam rolled me in my 20s.
Years ago, I heard about toxic chemicals lurking in beauty products and toiletries, but I didn't understand how they were affecting me on a cellular level and causing my body to react unpredictably on a cutaneous level.
Until one day (after many years) I finally got it
Initially, after long bouts of elimination trials, I linked the sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) that was in my toothpaste, body wash, shampoo, and hand soap to my angry skin reactions. The recurring outbreaks, a rash that enveloped my mouth (aka my "rash stache"), fat lips, and yes, even swollen eyelids that plagued my life for years, was due to toxic chemicals I continuously exposed myself to.
Once I eliminated all the SLS-laden products I was using, my skin started improving. But, not entirely. Which got me wondering...what else is in this stuff?
Unfortunately there's a long laundry list of metals, resins, chemical intermediates, endocrine disruptors, carcinogens, and various other toxic ingredients hiding in your personal use products. And it's not just in toiletries, it's in just about every conventional product, including makeup.
A study by Environment California, detailed common chemicals found in consumer products and their potential health impacts. This study along with numerous subsequent studies came to the same conclusion, these toxic hidden and disguised ingredients have been directly identified as the root cause of immune issues, such as dermatitis, to systemic or chronic illnesses such as cancer.
It took eliminating all of these chemicals to FINALLY heal my skin.
As a rule of thumb, with regard to diet and product use, stick to the ingredients you understand.
Who to trust with your largest organ?
Ask not just about your skin, you can absorb carcinogens and hormone disruptors from the air too (if you see me plugging my nose and speed walking past Bath and Body Works, now you know why).
But buyer beware, what's on the shelves at your local health food store may not be any better than conventional products. In fact, a lot of those products are owned by conventional conglomerates. If you don't trust Colgate with your toothpaste needs (I do not- goodbye SLS!), then Tom's of Maine should also be scratched off your list.
Buyer beware, what's on the shelves in your local health food store may not be any better than your conventional products.
With all this said, be comforted by the fact that there are a lot of clean companies on the market now that serve as great alternatives and are a vast improvement from your conventional products.
My cosmetic Cinderella
I have tried just about every clean, green, and natural product on the market, and I continuously ran into the issue that while I knew I was using a superior product for my body, I didn't like the results. My hair didn't feel as clean, the tone of the makeup wasn't right, or the ingredients were drying. I experimented for years until I finally found my cosmetic Cinderella.
My absolute favorite, hands down, is 100% Pure. The ingredients are clean, organic, they smell amazing, and I LOVE the results! My hair feels silky smooth after washing and my skin feels like I've done it a favor when I use their skin and makeup products. If you're someone who loves fragranced lotions but doesn't want the chemical exposure, 100% Pure has an amazing line of body butters and lotions that I'm still making my way through. The exotic ingredients feel and smell amazing!
All of 100% Pure's products are superior to anything else I've come across to date, due to their rigorous testing, certifications, quality ingredients, and of course, my personal results.
More reasons to love and support this company:
They use certified organic ingredients
Each ingredient is tested for pesticide residues
Free of parabens, formaldehyde, PEG compounds and other toxic stuffers
Free of artificial dyes
Cruelty-free/no animal testing
Full of actual fruits and vegetables which have beneficial vitamins and antioxidants
Here's my after a long night out (New Year's Eve) look:
In this look, I'm using:
Luminous Primer Vitamins + Antioxidants
Fruit Pigmented Water Foundation
Fruit Pigmented Ultra Lengthening Mascara
Creamy Long Last Liner: Royal
Fruit Pigmented Cherry Lip & Cheek Stain
Glossy Locks Shampoo
Glossy Locks Conditioner
Sorry men, toxic ingredients are not just in women's beauty products
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported that male reproductive problems, doubled in the past 30 years and they attribute these issues to exposure of controllable environmental chemicals.
Whether or not you make the switch to 100% Pure, please be sure to research the ingredients in what you're using. You never know how conventional products are affecting you on a cellular level until the damage has been done. It's imperative to do your homework!
For more healthful tips, discover the importance of knowing your vitamin D levels
1. Anderson, S.E., & Meade, B.J. (2014). Potential Health Effects Associated with Dermal Exposure to Occupational Chemicals. Environmental Health Insights (8)1, 51-62. doi: 10.4137/EHI.S15258
2. Barrett J. R. (2005). The ugly side of beauty products. Environmental health perspectives, 113(1), A24. doi:10.1289/ehp.113-a24