What this blog is about!

Now that we know most of our department store cosmetics and household products are full of harmful, cancer-causing and hormone-interrupting chemicals, what can we do about it? This blog is to help us all share ideas on what products we have tried, what products are relatively safe, what is affordable to the general public and what we have found to REALLY WORK! We are in this together!

It probably makes the most sense for you to start with the first post, and work your way up to the current one! We welcome your comments!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Body wash, soaps and shampoos - oh my!

Isn't it pleasant to know that the European Union has forced many manufacturers to omit tons of harmful chemicals in their formulations of personal products for Europe, but the United States gets left with all the garbage! Read, read, read your labels. When it comes to body wash, soap and shampoo --- watch out for sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), propylene glycol (which is an antifreeze actually), dioxin, and another thing called 1,4 dioxane (yes, that's a comma between the 1 and the 4). If you really want to freak out, check out the body wash, shampoo and lovely smelly stuff you have probably been slathering on your kids for years. All of that Baby Magic stuff by Johnson & Johnson, Johnson's Moisture Care Baby Wash, Johnson's Baby Shampoo, Baby Magic Soft Baby Scent -- chuck them! Formaldehyde has been found in many of these products (which is a probable carcinogen). They don't INTENTIONALLY add formaldehyde to their products, but it is released over time as preservatives break down in the containers of these products. It can cause an allergic reaction that will cause children to become more sensitive to other products in the future. The skin of infants and toddlers is about 30% thinner than the skin of an adult, so products absorb very quickly and deeply. Japan and Sweden have already banned formaldehyde in personal care products. What is OUR problem? Also watch for anything that says phthalate or paraben. They can interfere with the hormone system. You can print out a Dirty Thirty list from http://www.teensturninggreen.org/ on their Get Educated tab page. Keep a copy in your purse, so when you are at the store buying products, you can check this list. Here are some shower gels and shampoo/conditioners I have tried recently:

365 Herbal mint shampoo from Whole Foods
This brand carries the "Whole Foods Market Premium Body Care" little leaf design label on it, meaning it is guaranteed to be as "close to nature as possible." The price is VERY reasonable (sometimes on sale for $2.99 for 16 fl oz). I liked the smell, but felt like it didn't get my hair clean. I had to suds it twice to get it to even suds at all (granted, I have very hard water where I live, but also have a water softener). I used the whole bottle, then decided to chuck it - only because I didn't like the way it performed.

365 Herbal mint conditioner from Whole Foods (same as shampoo above - felt like it didn't work very well).

365 Citrus grapefruit shower gel from Whole Foods
Same as above, but felt like its performance was tolerable. Doesn't lather very well if you are using it for shaving, but it seemed to clean the skin OK.

** I just purchased a new brand of body wash, lotion, shampoo and conditioner at Whole Foods called Mineral Fusion. It is much more expensive than the 365 brand, but I really like all of the products so far. Two drawbacks - the price (almost $10 for an 8.5 fl oz bottle), and I just noticed after reading the ENTIRE list of ingredients at home that it includes titanium dioxide (toward the end of the ingredients list - I obviously didn't have my glasses on when I read it at the store). Titanium dioxide is receiving some bad press lately. It is an ingredient in almost every sunblock, also. I will most likely go back to the drawing board and find something without the titanium dioxide. By the way -- save your receipts from Whole Foods when you buy personal care products. You can return them if you don't like them and either get a refund or store credit to find something else. Nice benefit!

You might ask yourselves WHY manufacturers are using garbage chemicals in our products? Well, they are cheap for one thing -- and they DO what the manufacturers want them to do -- soften, lather, emulsify, smell, cleanse, etc. It would cost the manufacturers a TON of money to reformulate their products, and many of them are not willing to do it until we scream loud enough, bust them wide open to the general public, educate ourselves, and refuse to purchase harmful chemicals knowingly. We all need to smarten up, people! We didn't know any better all of this time, but we do now. Pay attention!

1 comment:

  1. I know -- it's crazy to keep commenting on my own posts, but I had another good comment from a friend that I wanted to share. This friend is in her mid 50's, breast cancer survivor. She is really liking some face care products she has purchased online from www.rejuvaminerals.com. This company is a signer of the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, which is a really big deal. It basically means they are committed to providing the safest products possible for us and they are also willing to disclose their true ingredients and subject their products to stringent testing. Anyway, these are the products my friend is really liking from Rejuva Minerals:

    Argan Wild Honey Facial Cleanser & Mask ($18.70 plus shipping)
    Marula Face & Body Oil ($13.60 plus shipping)