Did you know that your skin is your body’s largest organ? The prime purpose of your skin is to protect you from external toxins. In fact, because your skin is a “breathable” organ, up to 60% of what you apply topically is actually absorbed into your bloodstream. Scary, right? That’s why it’s so important to make sure you have a non-toxic skincare routine. You can start this process by thoroughly evaluating what products (e.g. makeup, deodorant, shampoo, conditioners, moisturizers, shave gels etc.) you use in your daily routine. A good mantra to have when choosing self-care products is to not put something on your skin that you wouldn’t eat.
Beware of endocrine disruptors
It’s no surprise that reproductive and developmental problems have become more prevalent in recent decades, as reports have highlighted the presence of low-level concentrations of potential reproductive or developmental toxicants (called endocrine disruptors) in personal care products. Some of these endocrine disruptors include parabens, benzophenones, bisphenols, and phthalates, to name a few. When absorbed in the body, endocrine disruptors can decrease or increase normal hormone levels, mimic the body’s natural hormones, or alter the natural production of hormones.
The consequences of exposure to endocrine disruptors appear to be different depending on age and gender. For men, endocrine disruptor exposure has been linked to testicular cancer, infertility, and a decline in semen quality. Among women, the increase in hormone-dependent cancers (like breast or ovarian) as well as endometriosis and uterine fibroids have been linked to exposure to endocrine disruptors. Furthermore, other chronic issues such as insulin resistance, hypertension, neurobehavioral development disorders, and poor thyroid function were also on the list of possible effects from exposure.
Increased awareness of the potential dangers hidden in the ingredient list behind many of personal care products have led consumers to be more selective in deciding which self-care products they use.
Ingredients to avoid if you want a non-toxic skincare routine
- Coal tar dyes: p-phenylenediamine and colours listed as “CI” followed by a five digit number
- BHA and BHT
- DEA-related ingredients
- Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives
- Dibutyl phthalate
- Parfum / fragrance
- PEG compounds
- Sodium laureth sulfate
I’ve done quite a bit of research, and wanted to share with you some of the products from some brands I love – first is 100% PURE, a company that uses natural ingredients that are certified organic. I use their mattifying primer, hydra drench-cream moisturizer, and fruit pigmented foundation for my daily coverage! I also love their lengthening mascara, the fruit pigmented naked palette (it’s honestly the prettiest blush and shadow palette I’ve ever used), and the cocoa pigmented bronzer (it smells and looks amazing). If you have oily skin, the bamboo blur powder is a life saver. Depending on the occasion I might top off my look with some fruit-pigmented lip gloss as well! If I feel like indulging myself every once in a while, I’ll use their vanilla bean whipped body butter, pure vitamin c mask, and the multi-vitamin + antioxidants potent PM serum. I also am a huge fan of Beauty Counter – their featherweight foundation is definitely growing me, as well as their adaptive moisturizer and brow gel. Oh, and if you’re looking for a natural deodorant that actually works, Primally Pure has a great charcoal one!
To check out some other products I use, see Jac’s favorites.
So, with that, I encourage you to start a new safe skincare routine. Go through your current products, and ditch any ones that might contain even the slightest traces of endocrine disruptors. If you try any of the products listed above, I’d love to hear your thoughts!