Did you know that our skin is the largest organ on our body, with a total area of about 20 square feet, and about 8 lbs. This part of the anatomy was previously unknown. Although still controversial, it has been defined as an “organ” due to it’s collective structure and function. Sense its porous anything you put on it gets absorbed and goes in to our bodies, this is why we need to take care of it and nourish it. So it is important to pay close attention to the ingredients in our skin care products. If the product you use contain harmful ingredients such as harsh, toxic chemicals, color, and fragrance, those ingredients make their way into your body, your blood, and lymphatic system.
- Things we should avoid.
Believe it or not toothpaste, people have been using toothpaste on their zits to ‘dry’ them out for years. Toothpaste can be very irritating to the skin, and it can worsen any post-acne. Toothpaste is no way a primary treatment for acne.
Lemon and other citrus fruits are other ingredients to avoid, as they contain a photosensitizing chemical which can cause a phototoxic reaction when exposed to the sun. This often causes a burn-like reaction to the skin.
Never use baking soda on your face. Our skin has a naturally acidic PH that helps keep the protective lipid layer intact, and when you introduce a highly alkaline substance like baking soda, it can damage that layer.
Hairspray as setting spray? Believe me i’ve thought of this too. But using hairspray as a makeup setting spray is a major beauty don’t, as hairspray can dry out and irritate your skin due to the products high alcohol content.
Mineral oil. a petroleum by-product that coats the skin like plastic, clogging its pores. It’s harmful because it interferes with the skin’s ability to eliminate toxins, therefore increasing likelihood of acne.
Things you can do.
Never leave home without sunscreen. One of the most important ways to take care of your skin is to protect it from the sun. When selecting a sunscreen, you should try to avoid chemical sun block that can cause irritation and dryness, this includes ingredients such as oxybenzone or arobenzone. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an spf of at least 15 repeat every 2 hours.
Manuka honey, in particular, is incredibly beneficial for the skin because its highly antibacterial, which can help acne-prone skin tremendously. It is actually one of the best natural moisture promoters. Honey is what’s called a humectant, which helps your skin absorb and lock in moisture.
Coconut oil has a long list of health benefits both internally and topically. coconut oil has incredible moisturizing and restorative properties, it contains a good amount of antioxidants and is antifungal. You can use it on dry skin or sensitive skin. It’s also good as a hair treatment for dry hair, just make sure you shampoo more than once. I love coconut oil i use it for almost everything, even cooking.
Oats. It’s nourishing and the skin-setting properties come from its mix of flaronoids, phenols, and also type of polypenol called avenanthramides, all which acts as anti-inflamatories. Helps with irritated skin or even help reduce inflamed skin caused by skin conditions like eczema.
Turmeric, this awesome root has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antioxidants, and astrigent properties; when applied topically, it helps smooth out skin and fight wrinkles. It also may help fade acne scars. Just make sure to dilute as turmeric by itself may stain the skin.
It is important to read labels and become educated about what ingredients to avoid when selecting body care products. If there’s a potentially harmful product that you love and cant let go of, try wearing a base coat of coconut oil on your body or organic lip balm on your lips to help create an extra layer between the product and your skin. Here are other specific ingredients to look out for:
- Phthalates: Helps products stick to skin and improves the stability of fragrance. Continue to build up in our bodies over time causing endocrine disruption, which can be toxic to our reproductive glands.
- Parabens (Methyl, Ethyl, Propyl, Iso, Benzyl, Ect.): used as a preservative. Hormone disruptor that mimics estrogen in the body. Currently being studied for links to breast cancer, especially when applied near the under arm.
- TEA + DEA (triethanolamine and Diethanolamine): considered so harmful, both are banned from products in Europe as they are known carcinogens.
- Tricosan/Triclocarbon: Chemicals that kill bacteria. Banned by the FDA in soaps yet still common in deodorants and cosmetics.One of the worst endocrine disruptors that encourages resistance to antibiotics.
- Vitamin A compounds (Retinyl Palmitate, Retinyl Acetate, Retinol): Widely used in sunscreen, lotions, and makeup. Sunlight causes Vitamin A to brake down, producing free radical that can damage DNA and increase skin sensitivity.
- Aluminum (Potassium or Ammonium Alum): Blocks sweat glands to reduce the amount of sweat you secrete. Easily absorbed by the skin and can accumulate over tame in the brain, potentially causing Alzheimer’s Desease, cancer and other neurological conditions.