The word ‘detox’ pops up in the press as often as a Kardashian Instagram post: the Lemon Detox, the Clean-Eating Regime, the Sugar Free Plan and the Organic Only Diet. But do they really work and are these diets long-term solutions to overcoming deeply rooted routines? While these food-focused plans are usually short lived, there’s one detox that comes with quick-fix benefits for you (inside and out), as well as for our precious environment.
Fast fact – the human skin is the largest organ of the body. Cue dramatic music. Yes, this head-to-toe organ shrouds all our internal organs but what we forget is that it’s POROUS! Almost everything we put on top of it seeps inside, including all the good stuff, like water and vitamin C from the glorious sunshine, but it also absorbs toxins, chemicals and synthetic nasties directly into our bloodstream.
With this insightful discovery top of mind, I made the decision in 2008 to cut out as many human-made chemicals and toxins from my beauty regimen. I did this with food as well but that’s another story.
After looking closely at what’s lurking behind all the numbers and unpronounceable words on skin care and beauty products, I discovered that cosmetics, in particular, are full of ingredients that should come with hazard lights. Rather than making us look younger or more beautiful, the toxic ingredients inside conventional beauty products are likely to make us unwell, which may lead to disease and a disruption of the delicate hormonal balance of our bodies.
My advice to you is to learn what’s loitering in the products and why they are bad – for your body, for your water supply, for the marine wildlife affected by chemical run-off, for the recycling facilities that are chocking on empty tubes and bottles, for the landfill sites that receive non-recyclable plastic cosmetics containers, and so on… take these five simple steps to clear out your beauty cabinet and stock it with the substances that are good for you. Your body and the environment will thank you for it.
- Educate Yourself
Ingredient lists – we read them all the time, but mainly on food products. Switch the focus to your beauty shelf and I guarantee you’ll have room to spare. Browse your way through this list of 10 toxic ingredients to avoid. Here’s my rule of thumb – if I can’t pronounce it, I (usually) avoid it. Once you learn to identify toxic ingredients when scanning new products, they’ll never come home with you in the first place.
- Toss it Out
Now you know how to read a beauty product ingredient list, go through your bathroom cabinets and drawers to scan for harmful ingredients. Toss the harmful offenders to the curb. It’s time to move on to the brave new world of a cultivating a healthier, greener beauty conscience.
- Reassess & Minimise
Ask yourself: do I really need this pretty-looking product? Is it a necessity or is it just one of my 20 hand creams that make no difference whatsoever to my thirsty hands? Think about what you really need and like to use. The fewer products in your collection, the more money you save, the smaller the burden placed on your skin to absorb said products, and the less crap travels into the environment.
On the upside, the big beauty companies might not want us to make this realisation but did you know there are a few key commodities that work as multi-tasking wonder products? Yes! And one of these clever saviours is coconut oil. It does everything, from moisturise skin and hand cuticles to condition hair and get mixed into homemade beauty remedies.
- Locate Stores
The bad news: your local supermarket and pharmacy will no longer cut the mustard. The good news: once you learn to read the ingredient list, you realise the so-called ‘Natural’ and ‘Organic’ products in mainstream stores are not your friends. Despite claiming to be natural or organic, these products can still contain nasties you’d do well to avoid.
At The Well Store we’ve done the hard work for you. Our collection of fabulously transparent beauty and skin care companies, selling ethically made, non-toxic products, is long and varied. Check out this curated list of happy products.
- Reap the Rewards
What’s the saying? It won’t happen overnight, but it will…. You get the picture. Once you take your first steps on this clean skin and body yellow brick road, you’ll never look back. We promise. Making the change to a cleaner, healthier you is not costly, does not take days and will reward you in ways you never thought possible, including nourishing your soul.
May the Clean Beauty Force be with you!
Be well xx