Thursday, 17 May 2012

Let's talk about : skin

It's our body's biggest protection. It's the largest organ of the human body and can be one of the most complex.
If skin is so important then why is it so neglected?
My skin care routine has been so sporadic in recent years and it definitely shows!
Every day it's abused by make-up, the sun, harmful chemicals and so much more.

My skin is far from perfect and is just hard to understand sometimes!
Most days its dry but then some days it will just be so oily! I don't have combination skin it just goes from one extreme to another! I also have highly sensitive skin which is in a bit of a state at the moment!

Here's a question: how many chemicals do you think you are putting onto your skin every single day?
I hate the idea of putting harmful toxins on my skin, but honestly how many affordable alternatives are out there?

Now this is going to be quiet a wordy post, I warn you now, but I hope you'll appreciate what I'm going to tell you.

Below is a list of the 10 most common chemicals found in skin care products.

1) Methyl, Propyl, Butyl, and Ethyl Paraben- Some combination of  these synthetic ingredients are in almost EVERY skin and hair product made today.  Widely known to be highly toxic and cause allergic/skin reactions.  Companies use this dangerous ingredient, because it is extremely cheap and extends the shelf life of the product by inhibiting microbial growth.

2)  Propylene Glycol -This Petroleum by-product is a synthetic ingredient used as a humectant.  Also used as an INDUSTRIAL ANTI-FREEZE to de-ice airplanes!!!  This toxic ingredient causes many allergic reactions.  Research data states that through skin contact it can cause "liver abnormalities and kidney damage."
3) DMDM Hydrantoin - A Petro-chemical used as an ANTI-FREEZE in cars.

4)  Sodium Laurel Sulfate - This highly toxic synthetic substance (used for foaming abilities) causes urinary tract, bladder and kidney infections, genital disorders, eye irritations, skin rashes, hair loss, scalp scurf similar to dandruff, and allergic reactions.

5)  Synthetic Colors - Labeled as FD&C or D&C, followed by a color number such as FD&C Red 6. These highly toxic substances are usually coal-tar based and have been linked as cancer causing agents.

6) Synthetic Fragrances - Most Products will simply say "Fragrance" which means any combination of the cheapest 200 synthetic, toxic ingredients the company can find.  Causes headaches, dizziness, rashes, violent coughing, vomiting, skin irritations etc...

7)  Triethanolamine (TEA)/Diethanolamine (DEA) - Used to adjust the pH balance, but toxic and causes eye problems, and dryness of skin and hair.  DEA has been linked with kidney, liver and other organ damage according to several government-funded research.  One study found  that the topical application of DEA in rodents resulted in anemia, kidney degeneration, and nerve damage to the brain and spinal cord. (Melnick et al., 1994) Even more disturbing was that several animals died before the study ended.  Approximately 200 million pounds of DEA are produced annually in the U.S., most of which goes into personal care products. (USITC, 1990).

8) Imidazolidinyl Urea and Diazolidinyl Urea - Used as a a preservative, but a primary cause of contact dermatitis.  You might see these toxic chemicals under the names Germall II and Germall 115, which release formaldehyde at just over 10°.

9)  Behentrimonium Chloride - Toxic ammonia compound.  Ingestion can be fatal.  Concentrations as low as0.1% can be irritating to the eyes and cause necrosis (tissue death) of mucus membranes.

10)  Titanium, Zirconium, Benzalkonium, Bismuth, Antimony (*1), Barium (*2), Aluminum, Tin, Chromium, Benzene & PCBs. - According to Dr. Hulda Reghi Clark, all of these ingredients are extremely dangerous. *1 - Breast cancer cases show Titanium, Zirconium, Benzalkonium, Bismuth, Antimony, and Aluminum accumulation in the breast. *2 -Barium is described in the Merck Index as a "caution". ALL water or acid soluble Barium is POISONOUS! 10ed. P.139, 1983.

I've just looked through all of the skin care products I use daily and only one contained any of these chemicals.
I actively try to avoid products with a large range of chemicals in or those which are artificially fragranced.

But what do you do now you know just what chemicals you are putting on your face?

There are so many natural products which you can put on your skin!
You only have to walk into your kitchen or bathroom to find them!
Here are some natural remedies to replace the expensive chemical-ridden products most commonly used.

Make-up remover:
  • Dairy products are brilliant for removing make-up. Milk and yoghurt being the best. Just apply enough to a cotton pad to cover it and wipe across your face. After wash your face with some warm water to remove any residue.
  • Olive oil is perfect for removing make up on your eyes. Just soak a cotton pad and leave on your eyes for a few minutes then simply wipe away.
  • Neither of these solutions will work as quickly as the make-up remover which can be store bought but is so much better for your skin and just as effective.
Make-up brush cleaner:
  • Again this is one for olive oil. It breaks up the make-up on your brush without leaving a residue or a smell. It also leaves your brushes lovely and soft.
  • Witch hazel is a wonderful cleanser (and toner) and is all natural. Witch hazel is a plant and the stuff you get in the brown bottle is simply goodness squeezed from the plant's leaves. 
  • Lemon is another great cleanser, the naturally acidic quality of the lemon penetrates deep into the skin to give a thorough clean.

  • Again witch Hazel and lemon are great toners.
  • Egg whites are great for dry skin. If you whisk the egg white until it foams slightly you will get the best results.
  • Honey is a product used in so many skin care lines. A soothing honey mask will help to tone down acne and redness.
  • Diluted apple cider. Yes it's good for more than just drinking. The apple and acidic quality of cider tone up skin really well (but please make sure you always dilute it to equal proportions)

  • Illipe Butter. This little beauty is extracted from illipe butter and is similar to coca butter. Now you won't find this on the shelves of the drug store (although it is an ingredient in many moisturising products) but you can buy it on line so easily. The best part is you can use it on your hair and nails too!
  • Aloe Vera is another ingredient which is in many store bought products but works great by itself! Invest in an aloe plant!
  • Oil! Coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, grape seed oil peanut oil. I could go on. Any oil you can get your hands on! It is so moisturising to skin. However if you have oily skin I would suggest mixing the oil with some natural yoghurt and honey.
  • Cucumber has naturally soothing quality's on traumatised skin so is perfect if you wear alot of make-up!
  • Bananas are for more than just breakfast! Mash one up and spread it on your face for a nourishing face mask.

  • Brown sugar and grape seed oil. All the ladies in my family now swear by this ever since I made them each a batch for Christmas! There are no exact measurements for this just chuck the two ingredients together until you get a thick paste consistency and then squeeze in some lemon and lime!
  • Ground coffee. This is great for softening up your skin!
  • Porridge (oatmeal) is a more gentle exfoliant to use on your skin. I mix it with bananas, honey and yoghurt.

I am in no way claiming to have perfect skin, I am just disgusted by the amount of chemicals some companies put in their products and wanted to find a better way of treating my skin and wanted to share that with you lovely ladies.

All of these natural remedies will cost you a fraction of the price of what you can get from the stores!

Most of these remedies I have tried myself and will definitely be using them on a regular basis.

Now I ask you all to sort through your skin care and get rid of products with harmful chemicals in (it's better for you and the environment)!
Do you use any natural remedies?


  1. Will def be using the scrub sounds LUSH! Nicole xx

  2. I used to use lemon,honey and aloe vera plant,all were very good I just got too lazy though and stopped using them but defiantly think I'll start back :)



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