Why getting clean with your skin care is so important

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I feel like I have the most sensitive skin on the planet. It’s been that way since forever and I react to so many different skin care products. Once I tried a cream from a very popular multi-level marketing brand and my eyes actually swelled shut. It was a product for sensitive skin, but it had gluten in it and my face reacted really poorly to the "natural" ingredients in it to say the least.

That being said, I’ve even tried products that were actually natural and I’ve had reactions to some of the essential oils.

So it’s hit and miss with me on everything. Your skin is the largest organ of the body. It absorbs everything you put on it. That includes prescription medications to treat skin issues. While I’ve had eczema pretty much my whole life on and off, I’ve finally reached the point where I know what brings it on in me (dairy and gluten) and if I slack off in my eating, my skin lets me know.

What are some of the ingredients that should not be in your skin care products?

Parabens are unquestionably the most commonly used preservatives in the cosmetics industry. They’re in just about any cream you might use, as they prevent mold, fungus and parasites from sprouting and growing in your products. The problem is that they can be absorbed through the skin, and have often been found in breast cancer tumors! All signs point to skin care products being the cause.

Because of this, there is a growing concern that excessive use of parabens may give rise to breast cancer in women and testicular cancer in men. Although there haven’t been any conclusive studies proving this, it should be enough to make you concerned. In fact, it’s why there are so many “paraben-free” items popping up in the supermarket and pharmacies around the country.

Parabens, which can appear in different forms, so here’s what you want to look out for:

  • benzylparaben

  • butyiparaben

  • propylparaben

  • methylparaben

  • ethylparaben

  • Isobutylparaben

Phthalates - these are in lots of things besides skin care (ugh!). have been found to act as a hormone disruptor linked to reproductive defects, insulin resistance and developmental problems in children.

Here’s the sneaky part - most of the time phthalates aren’t listed on the label of your products, so you have to dig to find out if they are included. They’re often found in anything that lists “fragrance” as an ingredient. Stick to products that are scented with essential oils instead.

If you can pronounce methylisothiazolinone, you’re one step ahead of me. Pronouncing it is one thing, putting it on your skin is another. But many of us do, without realizing. It’s in everything from baby shampoos to our daily moisturizers.

In studies, animals that were subjected to this chemical - even small quantities - were shown to have brain cell damage. Probably best not to put this on your skin.

I didn’t convert to organic and natural skin care all at once. It’s been a process over a couple of years. One by one I replaced all of my skin care products to ones that were either completely natural or were close to all natural. Aside my my eczema outbreak, which is due to dietary choices, my skin has never been better.

I am in love with every product from Skin Essence Organics. I’ve used two of their moisturizing oils, their nurture face mask and right now I am using their e-cream every day, twice a day because of an eczema outbreak (thanks dairy and gluten!). I also really like Gardener's Dream products - made on Salt Spring Island in beautiful British Columbia, by a company called Aroma Crystal. Their products use semi-precious crystal and vibrational therapy in them. Not only that, but they are made with organic natural ingredients and essential oils. Full disclosure - I had a reaction to their night cream, but it was because of one of the EO that I am allergic to. My sister-in-law loved the very same product. I use their Gardener's Dream cream during savasana with my yoga students.

Here are a few of the products that I use and LOVE:

Skin Essence Organics

The oils are incredible and SO nourishing for your skin. The Facial in a Jar is a product that I use weekly that leaves my skin smooth and refreshed.

Gardener’s Dream Cream from Aroma Crystal

Made on Salt Spring Island in BC, this little company uses vibrational crystal therapy to give their creams extra umph. They smell fantastic and they are made with gorgeous essential oils.