better-for-me beauty products

When I started college in 2008, that was (in my opinion) the peak of the trendy environmentally conscious movement. I went to a fairly small college that was highly regarded for their environmental programs.  While I was obtaining my Environmental Technician diploma,  I volunteered in the campus gardens, composted EVERYTHING I could at home, took advantage of the Free Market the school offered (basically you can drop off your used home goods and pick up some for free).  This was the year I also stopped wearing antiperspirant…is that too much information?    I switched from chemical-laden sticks to a more health conscious variety.  Did you know that antiperspirants contain aluminum, which has been linked to causing Alzheimer’s? Plus, sweating is natural and good for the body…society has conditioned us to believe that sweating (especially on women) is gross and needs to be covered up. But I’ll save that rant for another day:)

I wanted to switch my other beauty products to some better options but didn’t know where to start.   I eventually found the brand Nature’s Gate (pictured) and loved the shampoo.  It cleaned and rinsed well and eliminated my need for conditioner.  I slowly switched my sunblock, body lotion, body soap and hand soap to a better-for-me alternative. 

A lot of beauty products contain Parabens, which act as a preservative.  Studies have shown that they can stay in a women’s system and get passed to her baby through breast milk.  Scary!  They can also cause skin irritations, may cause cancer and may be harmful to the male reproductive system.  However, other studies concluded that there are no harmful effects of parabens…But I chose to avoid them just in case.   The products I use are also free from artificial fragrance and dyes because I have very sensitive skin. 

I’ve found that my new products clean just as well, if not better than the nasty alternatives.  Plus, I know I’m not adding extra stress to my body by exposing it to harsh chemicals.  

The picture in this post shows my shampoo, hand soap, lotion, sunblock, body soap and deodorant.  They were all reasonably priced and available at a local health food store and a bulk food store chain. 

that little white egg shaped thing is a deodorant crystal
 I hope I didn’t come across as preachy and a know-it-all in this post.  If I did, I’m sorry.  As I mentioned earlier, studies have been done to both prove and disprove the harmful effects of chemicals like parabens.  But if there is even a small chance something I use daily is harming my body, I’m not going to use it. 
My little challenge to you is to take a look at the items you use and see if they have anything like phosphates, parabens, artificial fragrance, phthalates…If you see those or anything else on the ingredients list that you are unsure of, take a few minutes to search them online.  You might be surprised to learn what they do to our bodies. 

About Christina

20-something; rural dwelling; wife to David; homeowner; pretty good cook; wearer of skirts; friend to all cats.

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