Congratulations! You’ve made an effort to eliminate processed food from your diet, and have created and followed a regular exercise routine. Those are impressive positive changes, but you can do even more on your journey to a healthy lifestyle by using pure products. An often overlooked area for improvement is hiding in your soap dispenser, shampoo bottle, and makeup bag.
The personal care industry is booming in the United States, but there are very few restrictions on the ingredients that can be used, and many include dangerous toxins that can be absorbed through your skin.
Soaps, deodorant, makeup, hair products, and even your toothpaste may include ingredients that can pose a health hazard, and may even be banned in other countries.
Determining the safety of personal care products is trickier than distinguishing between health food and junk food, but it can be done. The first step is to become an informed consumer. Don’t assume that because a product is labeled as “natural,” or “organic,” it is. The personal care industry does not have to comply with the same regulations as the food industry, and ingredient labels can be vague or incomplete. Do your research by visiting sites such as the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database, the Organic Consumer’s Association, or Dr. Mercola’s website, mercola.com.
It is especially important to keep an eye out for sodium lauryl sulfate, parabens, and phthalates, as they are not safe and can be absorbed into your body. Other toxins that are frequently found in personal care products include heavy metals such as lead, arsenic, cadmium, mercury and beryllium, as well as the vague ingredient, “fragrance,” which often contains endocrine disruptors that have been banned in Europe.
In your soaps and toothpaste, it is important to keep an eye out for triclosan, an antibacterial agent that is behind the growing problem of antibiotic resistant bacteria, as well as aspartame, a known cancer-causing artificial sweetener. Microbeads, tiny plastic spheres included in many personal care products, are incredibly damaging to the environment and to the aquatic animal population as they can easily pass through our water treatment facilities.
Finally, it is important to consider the ways in which we as consumers affect the planet. Your purchases send an important message to the personal care industry, and companies listen when their pocketbooks take a hit. Whenever possible, try to purchase from companies that are careful to avoid toxic ingredients and value transparency. Also try to buy from companies that do not test on animals. Animal testing results in the suffering, death and disfigurement of countless animals around the world each year. There are many companies that take pride in their cruelty-free promise by producing pure products, and they should be supported.
I have found that the personal care pure products from Arbonne are effective, safe, of exceptional quality, and responsibly produced and distributed. If you would like to learn more about Arbonne or are interested in purchasing their pure products, the Arbonne line can be found on my website for your convenience.
Ferrer, E. C., & Cummins, R. (April 12, 2016). Hormone Disruptors: Everyday Poisons in Non-Organic Food, Body Care Products, Water Bottles and Home Furniture. Retrieved June 14, 2016, from https://www.organicconsumers.org/essays/hormone-disruptors-everyday-poisons-non-organic-food-body-care-products-water-bottles-and
Humane Society International. About Animal Testing. Retrieved November 1, 2016, from http://www.hsi.org/campaigns/end_animal_testing/qa/about.html
Mercola, J.. How Safe Is Your Favorite Lipstick? (August 31, 2016). Retrieved November 1, 2016, from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/08/31/lead-in-lipstick.aspx
Mercola, J.. Is Your Toothpaste Loaded With Toxins? (August 31, 2016). Retrieved November 1, 2016, from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/08/31/toxic-toothpaste-chemicals.aspx
Mercola, J.. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate: Facts Versus Fairytales. (July 13, 2010) Retrieved June 14, 2016, from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/07/13/sodium-lauryl-sulfate.aspx
Environmental Working Group. Not Too Pretty. (July 8, 2002). Retrieved June 14, 2016, from http://www.ewg.org/research/not-too-pretty