Your skin is your largest organ, and you absorb whatever your skin touches. That means that what you put on your skin daily, and what you put in your mouth are of equal importance… but when it comes time to shop for green beauty products, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the options, ingredients, claims and buzzwords. And how do you even start to tackle that pile of products in the bathroom? It doesn’t have to be so hard. Knowing a few key ingredients to avoid can help you navigate the label of any shampoo, lotion or cream. By cleansing your beauty routine of these top offenders, you can decrease your total body burden significantly and completely green your beauty routine.
So what’s the best way to start?
1. Take inventory: Line up all of the products you use every morning on your bathroom counter. Everything from shampoo, soaps, lotions, creams, fragrances, deodorant, toothpaste… all of it!
2. Categorize: Check each product’s ingredient list against the list below. If a product has 1 ingredient on the “avoid” list, pull it aside. If it has 2 ingredients, put in a separate group. 3 or more ingredients in a 3rd group. Once you have gone through all your daily products, take a look. How many in the “1 Ingredient” group? What about 3 and more group?
3. Plan and Replace: Every change you make to decrease the toxins in the environment matters, and this isn’t a case of “all or nothing”. If you decide to dump them all and start fresh, good for you! But, if you want to take a more gradual approach – start with the “3 Ingredient or More” pile. Ditch these products today, and treat yourself to natural, pure, toxin-free products that you will love. I recommend starting with what you put on your face, body creams, and deodorants. Next, make a list of the products in group 2 and group 1. As you run out of a product, replace with a natural version. Repeat until you have completely detoxed your beauty routine!
Want some product recommendations to get you started? Stop by Well & Good for my favorite skin care lines, body creams, nail polish & remover, and deodorant. All organic, of course! I am in the process of gathering all of my favorites in my Organic Lifestyle Boutique. I’ve done the research, and product testing for you!
Here’s a list of ingredients to look for (and avoid) on your labels:
1. Fragrance, parfume (phthalates)
2. PEGs (polyethylene glycols): peg-80 sorbitan laurate, peg-150 distearate, anything with “PEG”
3. Parabens: anything with the suffix “paraben”, most common – methylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben
4. DEA, MEA, TEA: diethanolamine, monoethanolamine, triethanolamine, cocomide DEA, lauramide DEA, oleamide diethanolamine
5. Coal Tar: FD&C…, D&C… (ie: FD&C Red number 6, etc)
6. BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene)
8. Sodium Laurel Sulfate
9. Sodium Laureth Sulfate Vitamin A (retinyl palmitate, retinol), espeically for products worn in the sun, such as sunscreen or day moisturizer Petrolatum (i.e. petroleum jelly)
10. Siloxanes: ingredients ending in “-siloxane” or “-methicone”
11. Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives: DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine, quaternium-15, and sodium hydroxymethylglycinate
Here’s to enjoying a more natural 2014, full of pure and luxurious products you will love!