I recently bought my first dry shampoo. When I shower and straighten my hair, but don’t work out, I find that I can make it 48 hours without washing my hair. However, the roots around my face get a little greasy. So I’ve purchased a dry shampoo from Fekkai. The powder absorbs the excess oil and gives my hair a little lift. This particular brand is free of parabens and synthetic fragrances, unlike most of the ones on the market. It’s a bit of a pain to use, but it does what I want it to do. If you don’t feel like washing your hair every day, you might find a product like this helpful.
Archive for the ‘Personal Care Products’ Category
I recently stumbled across a new line of personal care products from a company called Acure. They may or may not be new, but they’re new to me. I have found every product I’ve tried to be of exceptional quality, and the company also does many other things I love–many of their products are Fair Trade (which guarantees livable wages for workers and their families), their bottles are made from recycled plastics, they plant trees, they donate profits to worthy causes, and the ingredients live up to my strict standards. For example, the bottle of body lotion I’m currently holding is vegan, paraben free, sulfate free, cruelty free, and free of synthetic fragrances. Many of the ingredients are organic too.
My personal favorites include:
- Energizing Mandarin Orange and Mango Body Lotion - very intense moisture without a greasy feeling. Love the fragrance from essential oils only. One tree planted for every bottle sold.
- Brightening Facial Scrub – I have tried so many exfoliators and this is by far my favorite! I can’t say enough good things about it. I love the fine grit and it actually makes my face feel so soft and smooth afterwards, not irritated or raw like it has been from harsher scrubs. Read the reviews on their site and you’ll see I’m not alone in my opinions. Highly recommended.
- Lemongrass Conditioner - Very nice fragrance and very moisturizing without weighing down my hair. I have a hard time finding good conditioners that don’t contain synthetic fragrances and this is one of the best ones I’ve tried in years.
- Radical Resurfacing Facial Lotion – I’ve been using this for less than a week, so I haven’t really seen any changes in some of my hyperpigmentation or blotchiness, but I’m happy with the feel and scent of the lotion. I’ll be curious to see if it really can even out my skin tone.
A year and a half ago, I purchased a Clarisonic face brush. Several of my friends and family members raved about how well it cleaned their skin, and they weren’t alone. Online reviews were very positive for the brush. People seemed to think the oscillating bristles of the Clarisonic were the best way to treat a whole host of skin problems.
I’ve been using the brush long enough to write a thorough review. While this brush does clean well and I enjoy the mild face massage, I honestly don’t get it. The brush is $150-200, and replacement heads (needed every 3-4 months) are about $20. I expected good exfoliation from the brush, but I don’t find that it removes dead skin very well. I still need to exfoliate with other products on a regular basis. One of the reasons I bought the brush was in hopes for mechanical removal of dead skin without lots of chemicals or expensive products, so this has been a disappointment. Continue reading »
Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo sold in the U.S. has contained known carcinogens for years. Sadly, their formulas sold in other counties like Japan and Sweden do not. Thanks to years of pressure from the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, they plan to phase out the preservative quarternium-15 (which releases formaldehyde, a carcinogen) and 1,4-dioxane (also a carcinogen).
Read my post on this issue from March 2009. It certainly took a long time for Johnson & Johnson to yield to the pressure, and I’m grateful to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics for their persistence! Below is a letter they sent to their subscribers.
Are Canadian babies any less deserving of safety than Japanese babies? Is it OK for U.S. babies to share the bathtub with formaldehyde but not for U.K. babies? We don’t think so, and we’d bet most people would agree that all babies should be safe, regardless of where they live.
Yet Johnson & Johnson sells different—safer, formaldehyde-free—versions of its iconic “No More Tears” baby shampoo in Denmark, Finland, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, Sweden and the U.K. than in the U.S., Australia, Canada, China and Indonesia. This news was exposed in an analysis the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics released Tuesday. Continue reading »
I often get sore throats from colds, or from hanging out late in loud environments while drinking. I’ve found a great way to treat sore throats is by gargling with natural mouthwashes. Many are formulated with great essential oils that are soothing and/or antiseptic. I especially like the peppermint mouthwash from Tom’s of Maine (not their new wicked fresh line, but their previous line) but I have a hard time finding it. I just tried out a Jason Healthy Mouth one. Check out these great ingredients for sore throats:
- Witch Hazel
- Golden Seal
- Clove oil
- Tea tree oil
Bath & Body Works makes a large selection of popular hand soaps. I used to love their products, including their hand soaps. I no longer purchase them though because they’re loaded with synthetic fragrances, colors, and preservatives that I don’t want on my skin. Also, they all contain triclosan, so that Bath & Body Works can label them antibacterial. Research shows that triclosan does more harm than good, especially to the environment, and that you can remove just as many germs with proper hand-washing using regular soap than you can by using antibacterial soap. Even the American Medical Association advises against using triclosan in homes.
Women’s Voices for the Earth has a petition you may sign, asking the Bath & Body Works to stop using triclosan. Try using good old bar soap instead. One of my favorites is made by Dr. Bronner’s. The citrus orange bar soap is fabulous. Compare its clean ingredient list to that of an antibacterial soap from B&BW:
Dr. Bronner’s Citrus Orange Bar Soap: Organic Coconut Oil, Organic Palm Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Water, Organic Orange Oil, Organic Olive Oil, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Lemon Oil, Organic Lime Oil, Salt, Citric Acid, Tocopherol (vit E)
Bath & Body Works Vanilla Bean Anti-bacterial Moisturizing Hand Soap: water, sodium trideceth sulfate, hydrogenated soybean oil, sodium lauroamphoacetate, petrolatum, cocamide MEA, glycerin, ammonium chloride, fragrance, propylene glycol, acacia senegal extract, gelatin, green tea leaf extract, retinyl palmitate, shea butter, artemia extract, echinacea extract, tocopheryl acetate, citric acid, imidazolidinyl urea, DMDM hydantoin, guar hydrosypropyltrimonium chloride, benzophenone-4, tetrasodium EDTA, butylene glycol, xanthan gum, benzyl benzoate, Mica (CI 77019), titanium dioxide, ultramarines (CI 77007), triclosan 0.3%.
Which would you rather put on your skin multiple times each day?
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services added 12 substances to their list of known human carcinogens, including formaldehyde and styrene, this month. Styrene is a precurser to the plastic polystyrene, or PS (#6), which is one of the most commonly produced plastics in the world. Several billion kilograms of the stuff is produced every year. You may come into contact with this plastic most commonly in those ubiquitus red plastic cups (beer anyone?). According to the article, the general population’s greatest exposure to styrene is through cigarette smoking.
Formaldehyde is most commonly found in adhesives used in home construction materials (particle board, fiberboard, plywood, laminant flooring), although it’s also used as a preservative in cosmetics like hair straighteners and even in clothing (that nice wrinkle-free collared shirt your husband wears may very well contain it). While you may not be that concerned about the formaldehyde in your kitchen cabinets or furniture, you should know that it off-gases and is one of the contributors to poor indoor air quality. An amendment to the Toxic Substances Control Act by President Obama last year would set limits on formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products that will go into effect in 2013. Until then, you can improve your home’s indoor air quality by ventilating it as much as possible or by cleaning the air with certain indoor plants.
Almost a year ago, I tried a skin care product line called Tilvee. I’ve tried two face creams (Cranberry Balancing Lotion and the Argan and Sea Buckthorn Age-Defying Cream) as well as a hand lotion (Pomegranate Body Cream). All three are to die for! What’s best is that all the products are free of parabens, petroleum, artificial fragrances, and toxins. That means you don’t have to scan their labels every time you buy something to make sure they’re safe. Many of the ingredients are organic (the cranberry lotion is 89% organic). Even the labels are printed on tree and water free paper with soy based inks. And all of the energy used by the company’s office and lab is renewable.
Not only are the products ethically made and environmentally friendly, they also work incredibly well. In fact, the Age-Defying Cream won an award from Delicious Living in 2010 for best anti-aging cream. If you live in Colorado, you can find these products at many natural food stores like Vitamin Cottage and Whole Foods. If you don’t, it looks like you can order them online.
The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database has recently been updated. The website also has a new look. Before you buy a personal care product, look it up there to learn more about its ingredients and safety. The EWG has had this site for seven years now and it’s been a great resource for my family. If you’d like to support them to ensure that they can continue the work they’re doing to protect us, you can donate here.
My husband has decided, on his own, that he would like to stop using shampoo. According to him, our logic is faulty–remove all the moisture, then add it back, remove moisture, add conditioner… He would rather let his hair find its own balance. I’m curious to see how this goes. I don’t think that I could personally do it, with my long hair, but it might be easier with short hair. Anyone else tried this before?