You likely already know that ingredients in personal care products are just as important as the foods you eat. With your skin being your largest organ, the products you put on your body matter!
But whether you knew this or not you may still be wondering – how do you avoid them? And more importantly, what are the ingredients to look for when assessing personal care items?
We enlisted the help of our sponsor, Morrocco Method, for this handy list below to help us all take the guesswork out of what to buy. I’d highly suggest taking a picture of this with your phone and having it handy with you next time you go shopping – no more wondering whether products pass the test or not!
5 Ingredients to Avoid
Parabens are chemical substances used in a great deal of shampoo and cosmetic products. Initially intended to inhibit bacterial growth in cosmetics, time has revealed some nasty side effects such as possible disruption of proper endocrine function and also links to cancer.
Sulfates are widely used because of their ability to attract and break down dirt. However, sulfates can strip away precious moisture in the hair along with protective barriers. They can also cause skin irritation, hair deterioration and sometimes eye damage – ugh!
The so-called sweet smells were actually created to mask the concoction of hazardous chemicals in products. I’d much prefer just not having the unwanted chemicals (or the fragrance) at all, thank you.
The purpose of phthalates is to increase the flexibility and softness in plastics in products like nail polish, lotions and hair sprays, making them easier to distribute. But they’ve also been linked to breast cancer, reproductive birth defects, and endocrine disruption.
- Synthetic Colors
One of the biggest offenders in packaged foods is also commonly found in personal care products. They’re often derived from petroleum or coal tar sources, are suspected to be carcinogenic, and are known skin irritants.
Personal Care Products to Assess
- Shampoos and Conditioners
- Hair Sprays
- Lotions or Moisturizers
- Shaving Cream
(And now for the good stuff…)
The Top 4 Natural Ingredients to Look For
- Apple cider vinegar (ACV) can be used on the hair to promote hair growth by stimulating the scalp. It can cleanse the hair efficiently without stripping the hair follicles of their natural oils. The environment alone causes chemical buildup which can easily be removed with ACV, and a bonus: ACV possesses antibacterial and anti fungal properties which can help with dry, itchy scalps.
- Green tea is rich in vitamins and antioxidants that can treat and help prevent hair loss. It strengthens the hair while protecting the cells from damage from free radicals, as well.
- Bentonite clay is used to cleanse the hair and pull out chemicals without stripping the hair of it’s essential oils. Found in natural mountain deposits all over the world, it can alleviate frizzy or damaged hair, treat eczema and dandruff and also provide the hair with calcium, potassium and sodium.
- Aloe Vera is rich in amino acids, vitamin A, folic acid and vitamin C. It can prevent frequent hair loss with growth-promoting enzymes that eliminate dead skin cells; it also helps retain moisture in the scalp, which in turn prevents dandruff.
You’ll find all these natural ingredients in Morrocco Method’s hair products, which offer sound alternatives without any of the nasty ingredients outlined at the beginning of this post. (Sidenote: they also have the best brush – Kiran on our team has been using it for 2 years and absolutely loves it!)
I realize that changing your hair care products can be somewhat scary and even overwhelming – but ridding your body of these unwanted substances and chemicals should make the transition easier.
Morrocco Method is offering 15% off of your purchase to let you try out their products that are all sulfate- and gluten-free and all natural. Just use the code “Real15″ and enjoy!