When I was in my early teens and started experimenting with personal care, beauty and makeup products, I really wasn’t aware of the different types of ingreidents that were in the products and the effect they could have on my body. Most of the products I used I heard about through word of mouth – this person tried this type of deodorant or my friend recommended trying this type of facial cleanser. Plus, lets all “face” it – we all went through puberty and were just looking for that magical cleanser that was going to clear up all the pimples on our faces! Now that I’m a few years older, I’m starting to turn the products over in my hands and ask a lot more questions. Why can’t I pronounce that ingredient or how are these products made?

The only way to become more familiar with products that you are using is to educate yourself. I recently attended a Beauty Bash event: The Future of Clean Products at WholeFoods in Lynnfield, MA. WholeFoods invited three local enterprenuers who create and sell clean skin care products at WholeFoods. Before we even get to the products, I just want to commend WholeFoods and their efforts to carry and sell products from local companies. Their commitment is amazing.

We heard from Shamanuti, The Laughing Tree Organics and Thesis.

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Each of the presentations touched on the importance of knowing the types of ingredients that go into your skin care products, how quickly your body absorbs and ingests those ingredients, and how they are made, produced and sold. For example, if I turned over one of the samples I received, the lip balm from The Laughing Tree Organics, I recognize and can pronounce everything that goes into this little tube: organic sunflower oil, organic beeswax, coffee flavor, organic coconut oil, vitamin E, organic rosemary extract, and organic calendula.

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I also found it interesting that they shared the different steps they are taking to produce the most organic, eco-friendly and healthy products for consumers. These products are out there and waiting for you to try them.

Now I know what you are thinking – Delia, are you really that concerned about every little ingredient your body is absorbing? And the answer is yes. I wasn’t before, but I’m reading more and more about products that are causing harm to people and we continue to buy it. Everyone can choose to believe or not believe what they read, but I’m going to make some changes. I even recently started using a different deodorant. I know you are probably laughing right now, but I started using a deodorant that doesn’t include aluminum after I read a few articles that explained how most deodorants have an aluminum-based compound that temporarily plugs the sweat ducts and prevents you from perspiring. It went on to include how a “few studies in recent years have theorized that aluminum-based antiperspirants may increase the risk for breast cancer.”

I quote, “According to the authors of these studies, most breast cancers develop in the upper outer part of the breast — the area closest to the armpit, which is where antiperspirants are applied. The studies suggest that chemicals in antiperspirants, including aluminum, are absorbed into the skin, particularly when the skin is nicked during shaving. These studies claim that those chemicals may then interact with DNA and lead to cancerous changes in cells, or interfere with the action of the female hormone estrogen, which is known to influence the growth of breast cancer cells.”

Thank you again to WholeFoods for hosting this event and for sending us home with a bag full of samples. I’m really exited to try the Aragon Oil from Thesis and the Activated Charcoal Cleanser from Shamanuti.

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