Most of us go through our daily grooming regimens without giving a single thought to what we’re putting on our bodies and how it may affect our health. The truth is that many personal care products we use daily on our skin, hair and teeth contain dangerous chemicals—some of them toxins or carcinogens. They’re easily absorbed by the body, transported into the bloodstream and can wreak havoc on the immune system, the nervous system and our internal organs.
What may be worse is that major loopholes in federal law allow the cosmetics industry to put unlimited amounts of chemicals into personal care products with no pre-market testing, no monitoring of health effects and inadequate labeling requirements.
Many shampoos, conditioners, soaps, lotions and creams, for example, contain ingredients generally contaminated with a chemical called 1,4-Dioxane. Interestingly, OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor) says 1,4-Dioxane is a suspected human carcinogen that can cause drowsiness, headaches, nausea, vomiting; eyes, nose, and throat irritation; liver damage, kidney failure and skin irritation.
Some toothpastes can leave a bad taste in your mouth when it comes to your health due to artificial colorings, added sugars and fluoride. Dr. John Yiamouyiannis, an international authority on the biological effects of fluoride, says: “Fluoride is more poisonous than lead and just slightly less poisonous than arsenic. It has been used as a pesticide for the control of mice, rats and other small pests.” Studies indicate that fluoride—in amounts that most people are exposed to daily via drinking water and fluoridated toothpaste—is a neurotoxin that can damage the brain.
Even perfume doesn’t come off smelling like a rose. A high percentage of chemicals used in fragrances are synthetic compounds derived from petroleum. They include benzene (a known carcinogen) derivatives, aldehydes and other known toxins capable of causing cancer, birth defects, central nervous system disorders and allergic reactions. Studies have found up to 23 identifiable carcinogenic compounds in over-the-counter perfumes.
Why risk repeatedly putting unwanted chemicals on your body? You can choose to be a natural beauty instead, and here are a few personal care recipes to get you started.
½ cup distilled water
½ cup liquid, pure castile soap—preferably from organic olive oil or coconut oil
1 teaspoon of organic grapeseed oil
Directions: Thoroughly mix together the ingredients and then pour into a bottle. Store in a cool, dry place. Shampoo’s shelf life is about six months.
Add ¼ teaspoon organic tea tree oil
Add ¼ teaspoon organic peppermint oil
Add ¼ teaspoon organic lavender oil
Add ¼ teaspoon organic sandalwood oil or whatever your favorite fragrance is
Face and Body Lotion
These are pretty simple. A few drops of organic extra virgin olive oil, almond oil or even a dab of extra virgin coconut oil can serve as an amazing face or body oil. For your face, the key is to rub the oil in your hands first so you don’t overdo it. Use the oil on your face when it’s still just a little damp; then lightly pat dry. The same holds true when you use these oils as body lotion--although you can be a little more generous with your amounts.
Give these a try, and bring out your beauty...naturally!