Thursday, April 21, 2016

What goes ON the body, not just IN it


As a child of the 80's, I remember whenever someone talked about recycling, growing their own veggies and making homemade potions to lessen the impact on themselves and the Earth, hearing people call them "tree huggers", "crunchies" or "granolas."  It was always said with a roll of the eyes, a slight scoff and basically being flippant about those people from that point on.  

While I didn't grow up in the South, I did adopt their motto of 'the higher the hair, the closer to God' in the late 80's and a few years into the 90's.  So I've done my part with the purple can of hairspray to eat through the Ozone since licking a light socket was burning my tongue.  (< -- That's called sarcasm, please don't do that.)  I also used that spray-in hair dye that you could be out in the sun or use a hair dryer to make you "blonde."  Well, I don't know what was in that crap but the Mr and I both had at it back in the day and our hair DNA has never been the same.  Seriously.  The texture and color have always been horrible since then.  I am reminded even now as I look in the mirror and see that brass strawberry blonde color that my hair projected instead of the California bleach blonde they promised us on the box.  I looked like a copper nightmare.  Because we were on a budget when I was a kid, we grabbed whatever was the cheapest where cosmetics, lotions, shampoos and all of that stuff was concerned.  That mentality spilled over into my adulthood and I never really questioned it.

As DIY blogs and health food stores started to become more prevalent instead of the punchline to a joke, I started to take notice.  Could people be on to something?  I would occasionally dabble in homemade masks with honey and purees and stuff like that.  My skin care routine was the occasional bottle of Olay this or that that I would use with no regular consistency.  Then when I discovered their micro dermabrasion kit, I did really like that and would use it every other month or so.  So basically I didn't have a consistent skin care routine.  Well, before you know it, you're staring into the middle age abyss knowing if you don't do something consistent now, you're plain screwed later.  Fillers and the like are not going to be part of my future...ever.  I don't care how bassett hound like I look, that shit just scares me.  If you do it, God bless ya...it's just never going to be a door I ever want to open.

So as I began to take my skin and sun care seriously, I decided to do some research.  I knew high end stuff was out of the question for me because I just don't have it in me to pay an outrageous price .  I also know people who spend their money on it and honestly, I haven't seen any major improvement in their skin or appearance.  Plus I can't justify bankrupting us on skincare products.  There was this vlogger I ran across who I thought had really nice skin and saw she did a current skin care vlog after people kept mentioning how much her skin changed and improved.  I think she mentioned she did some vegan challenge and when she went vegan, she wanted to make all of her beauty products cruelty free.  One brand that kept coming up was Andalou Naturals so I looked on Amazon and was pleasantly surprised that it was actually affordable.  Like if you spend $75 on one cream, you could actually get a whole skin care routine for the same price with Andalou and it was cruelty free, vegan and no parabens and all of that crap.  I bought a few items and some I liked, some were just okay and I probably wouldn't buy again.  I also saw she liked Acure and it was the same thing, very affordable and void of chemicals that can potentially do some damage in the long run.

I know, I'm sounding like a crunchy granola.  But if you think about it, there is enough research that parabens are being found in cancer cells and that we may or may not need to freak out about them.  Okay so if you think about all of the things you may use in the course of a day from shampoos and conditioners, lotions, makeup removers, skin care products, make up, hair care and the like, that "little bit" of exposure can add up to a lot.  I would much rather stop soaking myself in ingredients that have been shown to do some scary things.  According to this article, "scientists continue to study the effects of these endocrine disruptors and have investigated possible links to miscarriage, premature birth, birth defects, deficient sperm, obesity, metabolic disease, bone density and breast cancer. But how much exposure might lead to these health risks simply isn’t known, and scientists cannot ethically conduct tests to directly show such effects."  That is enough for me to say I'm going to clean up my medicine cabinet and linen closet.  I admit it's been much harder to find cruelty free make up that won't put a serious dent in the wallet.  I just can't justify $25 for ONE shade of eye shadow so I'm still doing a lot of searching for the right company and hopefully a palette I like.

In the coming months as I test out products (that I buy myself...I'm no big time blogger so I don't get free stuff like that), I will do posts on what items I like and why and what ones were misses for me.  I'm not saying everyone needs to jump on the bandwagon but it is something to consider.  I mean if we are told that whole foods are the best for our bodies, then why wouldn't it apply to what we put ON our bodies as well?  I'm now considering whole ingredients of things you can pronounce a prerequisite to my skin routine and not scary stuff that make you wonder if you're going to grow a third arm.

You can browse some of the Andalou Naturals stuff below:





You can browse Acure here:


Do you use organic/cruelty free beauty and/or skin care or just what you've used for years? Would you consider switching to more natural ingredients?  If you already use vegan or organic products, give 'em a shout out and what you love about them!

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10 comments:

  1. I am glad you are finding these alternatives. I mean, why not try to be as healthy as possible? It's getting easier and more affordable to find these healthy products every day now so it's a no brainer.

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    1. I love that you're on board with it! You've been really supportive. You certainly didn't marry a hippie but I think they were on to something. I haven't graduated to Birkenstocks just yet!

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  2. I swear you and I are sisters from another mother. I'm literally going through the same quest right now. I turn 42 in June and my years of nonchalantly skipping sunscreen and any kind of structured skincare regime are definitely starting to show. I'm trying to find quality skincare (and cosmetics) that are good for me, good for the environment, and are cruelty free.

    One way that I have found to try stuff out on the cheap is with online subscription boxes (like Ipsy, Birchbox, etc.) For $10 per month, I get to try out products that I would probably never have found otherwise. It helps me to get a feel for if I like something and if it is worth the price or not. I've also found some great online bloggers that are good at recommending healthy, cruelty-free options that won't break the bank. If you want me to share any resources I've come across, feel free to PM me and I'll be happy to share.

    Good luck on your quest to find what works best for you. And if you want to see some god-awful pics of my crunchy 80's Sun-In damaged hair to make you feel better about yours, I can share those too. :-)

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    1. I would love any recs you'd like to give! (And crunchy 80's pics!) I tried to message you on FB but it doesn't let you do that as a page so drop me a line over there and then I think the back and forth can begin! :-)

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  3. PETA (I know, I know, they have lots of issues, but...) has a list of companies on their website that have committed to being cruelty free so that may be a good place to start, then find the natural options from there.

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    1. Thanks so much! I didn't even think of that. I will definitely check it out!

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  4. I don't wear much make-up, and only rarely outside of work days. What I do wear is the same as I've been using forever. I'm not against changing it up, and cruelty free/all natural is very much in line with my values - but I'm not willing to take the time to research and test products myself. I'm interested to see what you find and when I run out of what I have on hand maybe I'll choose one of your recommendations.

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    1. Yeah, I wasn't into researching it all either so thankfully when I ran across a few vids, they gave me a good direction to go in. I really love both Andalou and Acure for skin care (Andalou CC cream is EXCELLENT for light foundation/sun protection.) I ordered some stuff on Vitacost today so I can't wait to try them out (various companies) and pass along my experience with them!

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  5. I purchase some products from clearandsmoothskin.com. I like the moisturizers. Their customer service is good. I usually order 4 products in order to get 25% off and they usually send samples and a bar of natural soap for each product ordered. They have a product called Kukui Nut Body Lotion. It might remind you of Hawaii. :) I will be interested to read your reviews. I wish I could turn back the clock and take better care of my skin.

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    1. Thanks for the link! I am looking for a good muscle rub and see theirs isn't made with camphor! Kukui oil is always a winner too!

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