Monday, July 2, 2012


Doesn't she look happy?
I cleaned up the bathroom the other day, and tossed a lot of products that I just plain don't "need" to use anymore. Lots of "mattefying" makeup, potions for rosacea, at least 3 different kinds of cleanser for oily skin.
I am a girly girl- always loved makeup. I am still not one to leave the house without it. Thankfully, this is now a preference, rather than a necessity. Back in the day, I "needed" a layer of green-tinted facial primer, or people would ask if I got a sunburn. Even with all that makeup- I dreaded summer time. I would be "shiny" in an hour, and three hours in, makeup would literally slide off my face. Not having to deal with horrible breakouts and rosacea and super-oily skin are still slightly amazing to me. I will occasionally complain about having a zit- Just one! and then laugh when I realize how ridiculous I sound.

I still have a big stockpile of what I call Beauty Booty and SG calls "junk". I've tried to make better choices- as I worried more about what I put into my body, the stuff I put on my body came under scrutiny too. Lotions and potions- there's a lot of stuff I hate to throw away. Ironically, a lot of it is from places like Lush and The Body Shop. Stores where you would think you don't have to worry about healthy ingredients? You do. Sulfates, petrochemicals (like Vaseline, mineral oil, and paraffin), some preservatives- like parabens...there's a lot of things to keep track of. Sometimes, it feels like it's ridiculous to try to avoid all this, because yes, it's everywhere. And yes, I want to look good and smell like cookies! Is that too much to ask?

Red rhymes with "lead".
Yeah. I am a red lipstick aficionado. I have been wearing the stuff- well, since I was old enough to wear lipstick!  So when I read things like this, and this, regarding the fact that deeply pigmented lipsticks tend to contain significant amounts of lead- I have to wonder- how much lead do I have in my system? What does 25 years of unintentional lead ingestion do to a person? Evidently, many brands have more lead than is "allowable" in a candy bar. Granted, I don't eat a candy bar per day, but lipstick is a daily ritual, at the least. I can see how that would add up.

I've made some pretty major changes: and most of them have had a happy ending. It seemed ridiculous to worry about where my meat comes from, but not to worry about having pieces of acrylic fused to my fingertips with glue. Those long acrylic nails that I ditched? They were expensive. The fumes and chemicals in the salon could not have been good for me. I found a decent substitute- I really like Zoya polish, as it has a lot of sparkly and fun colors, it's formaldehyde and DBP-free, and the polish remover is effective, but not overpowering. And since I upgraded my polish and my diet- my nails seem to have magically gotten ridge free and strong enough to last on their own. Kind of amazing!

So as I have been sorting, I have been reading labels for ingredients. If you want to do the same-
Here's a list of The Dirty Thirty (potentially harmful additives commonly found in makeup and personal hygiene products).  

Another resource I have found to be really helpful is EWG's Skin Deep Cosmetics database. They rate and code products like shampoo and cosmetics on a low/medium/high risk scale, depending on what is on the ingredient list. If you don't want to mess with that, there are a lot of really reputable companies out there- Burt's Bees, Zoya, and Mychelle are some of my favorites.

Call me crazy- I've replaced a lot of things with relatively simple products. Coconut oil is an amazing moisturizer. I put it on my hair as a deep conditioner, around my eyes as an eye cream- I also cook with it. And on a recent camping expedition (yes, I brought it along) I discovered that it can also be used to get a campfire going, even when it's really windy! Baking soda- I use it to exfoliate, and if I really want to do a deep shampoo, I just sprinkle a little on my scalp along with my shampoo- squeaky clean hair. Not to mention all the other household uses it's good for. Anyone else have a crazy, workhorse product like that?

Some things I don't mind going without, or replacing. Other things? My longwear lipstick is something you'd have to pry from my cold dead fingers. (I did check- no lead!) It's all a tradeoff. I am going to level with you though. I've never found a good "hippie deodorant". Ever. If you know of one, please set me straight.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sticking my fingers in my ears singing "lalalalalala" about the body shop stuff! lol. But seriously it's the only soap I have found that doesn't make Clover break out. It took some trial and error to get there too :/ both johnson and johnson and Aveno's baby line make her break out.

    It's funny when you read comments on some of the products where they have taken the bad stuff out and all the comments are how consumers/commenters don't like it anymore.

    Never thought to look in lipstick for lead though. Good to know. I'm not so much a girly girl but Clover is so I should start researching this stuff now. Thanks for all the info!