There is no question that your skin is the largest organ on your body. It protects everything that’s inside but it also acts as an entry point to harmful chemicals that can overwhelm your body’s ability to detoxify naturally. The average person puts over 100 chemicals on their bodies daily in the name of cleanliness and hygiene…yikes!
I used to be one of those people that spent hundreds of dollars on high end skin care products thinking that the more expensive it was, that it must be better for my skin.
I didn’t know then but I was paying a whole lot of money for ineffective products that were essentially harmful to my long-term health. Most if not all department store and drug store skincare products contain toxins like:
- BHA and BHT– used as a preservative in creams and makeup. BHA disrupts the endocrine system and is a suspected carcinogen.
- Coal tar dyes– used as pigment in makeup. They have the potential to cause cancer and can be contaminated with heavy metals that are toxic to the brain.
- Dibutyl phthalate– Used as a plasticizer in some nail care products. Suspected endocrine disrupter and reproductive toxicant.
- Formaldehyde– used as a preservative in cosmetics and nail polish and a known carcinogen.
- Parabens– Used in a variety of cosmetics as preservatives. Suspected endocrine disrupters and may interfere with male reproductive functions.
- Parfum– used as fragrance and can trigger allergies and asthma.
- PEG compounds– used in cosmetic cream bases and can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which can cause cancer
- Petrolatum- Used in some hair products for shine and as a moisture barrier in some lip balms, lip sticks and moisturizers
- Siloxanes- Look for ingredients ending in “-siloxane” or “-methicone.” Used in a variety of cosmetics to soften, smooth and moisten. Suspected endocrine disrupter and reproductive toxicant
- Sodium laureth sulfate– Used in foaming cosmetics, such as shampoos, cleansers and bubble bath. Can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which may cause cancer
- Triclosan– Used in antibacterial cosmetics, such as toothpastes, cleansers and antiperspirants. Suspected endocrine disrupter and may contribute to antibiotic resistance in bacteria
What a nasty list!
So I had to throw everything out and start from scratch experimenting with different natural products to see what worked for my normal/combination skin.
Here is my facial care routine
My favorite cleanser is 100% Pure-Jasmine Green Tea Facial Liquid cleanser. This stuff is amazing and free of nasty chemicals. It won’t dry your skin and leaves your skin looking brighter and refreshed. The downside, it’s a bit expensive but well worth it.
Another more affordable option is Yes Carrots Daily cream facial cleanser. It is not 100% natural but I’m pretty comfortable with the majority of the ingredients and it ranks low for toxicity on the EWG’s skin deep database.
For the DIY folks, I have read wonderful things about the oil cleansing method and I’m fascinated by it. It involves using castor oil and a single carrier oil of your choice like sesame oil, olive oil or coconut oil…that’s it! Sounds kind of crazy, but oil dissolves oil and it will not strip and dry your skin like many facial cleansers. It is used to pull out impurities and bacteria to the surface so you can wipe it away. Please follow this link so you can create your own personal blend. This is something I have not personally tried but definitely plan to. If you try it or have tried it, let me know how it worked out for you.
Your face only needs to be cleansed once per day so the best time to cleanse it is right before bedtime. In the morning, just rinse with water.
Exfoliating is important because it helps to remove dead skin cells so that new healthy ones can grow. It also helps to remove toxins from your skin and helps increase blood flow to those areas for the appearance of “glowing” skin. You should only exfoliate 1-3x per week. The frequency will depend on your skin type.
I’ve tried many different kinds of exfoliators but my favorite by far is just a slice of lemon. Yep…lemon! I take a lemon slice and scrub it all over my face followed by my Clairsonic. My face always looks brighter and healthier after I do this.
Right now, I am in love with Maracuja oil. It is rich in vitamin C, calcium and phosphorus. It helps remove toxic build up from the skin and acts as an anti-inflammatory. It also helps improve fine lines and wrinkles. It’s full of essential fatty acids that help repair and rejuvenate skin. Let me say that I have an acne prone forehead and this oil does not make me break out. I use Maracuja oil all over my face and neck and for added moisture to the sensitive under eye area; I also apply a layer of NOW coconut oil. I love that it absorbs quickly and leaves my skin supple.
The only product I have found that works wonders on blemishes is melaleuca oil. I stumbled on this by accident when my son developed a diaper rash and I cleared it with melaleuca oil and coconut oil. So I rubbed some on a pimple and wouldn’t you know it, it disappeared the next day. I’m new to the world of essential oils and after doing tons of research, I realized that I am not comfortable with the pyramid marketing of the two most popular oil companies, Do terra and Young Living. So after contacting several essential oil companies, I decided to go with Native American Nutritionals and I am very happy with the quality of their oils.
I still have a lot of work to do with my skin. My skin is not terrible but I do have hyper-pigmentation on my nose and forehead left over from acne and I have seen my complexion really improve since I started using this skincare routine.
Remember that taking care of your skin on the outside is only part of the solution to radiant skin. True skin health starts from the inside. Your worst enemies for aging are sugar and simple carbs and no skincare routine will give you the skin of your dream of if your diet is wrong.
Here are some super foods for more youthful, radiant skin:
- green tea
- spinach and other leafy vegetables
- pure dark chocolate
- extra virgin olive oil
- vitamin k rich foods: eggs, liver, raw milk, cheese, brown rice, cabbage, prunes and cashews
So there you have it, my easy skincare routine and my skin has never looked better.
Remember that knowledge is power and when know better you’re able to make better decisions for yourself.
I’d love for you to share with me what your skincare routine is like and what has worked and what hasn’t. Is there another oil that you use that has worked for you? Do you make your own products?
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Stay tuned for my next post on makeup and my recommendations.
Until next time, be well.