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CLEANSING YOUR SKIN

Clean skin without a load of chemicals

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CLEANSING YOUR SKIN

I don’t know about you, but I just want clean skin for all my family without a load of harmful chemicals, or worrying what harm they could be doing. Our skin is the largest organ of our body, and will absorb whatever we apply on to it.

When you start looking at the lists of ingredients, there are so many products with a Petroleum base .

One piece of advice that seems to be the same, is that you should not put Petroleum on unwashed skin, as it will apply a film that can seal in dirt as well as moisture.

There seems to be quite a large debate, on whether products containing Petroleum are ok or unhealthy.

One product that is probably in everyone’s cupboard is Vaseline, on their site they say their product is pure , triple processed ,non-comedogenic and refined not carcinogenic.

The ratings on EWG for Vaseline products, which vary from a good rating of 1 and above, depending on the product. ( One good tip was not to use this inside your nose as it can cause health problems, it is only for external use)

GOOP have a list of the different names that Petroleum can be found in our everyday care products, and cosmetics.( From link- these can be in the form of – “Toluene, Benzene, Paraffin Wax , polyethylene glycol, DEA,MEA, Mineral Oil, Butanol ( plus descriptions of chemicals starting with the butyl and propyl ) Perfume and Fragrance, they say a staggering 95 % comes from Petroleum .

I hate that they are allowed to hide these chemicals in our products by labeling them as a Trade Secret.

It is so cheap for them to use this refined product, but as was mentioned before, it’s more than eighty years since any regulations have been done properly on cosmetics in America. It feels as though they can get away with a lot of stuff.

Not all Petroleum products are equal either, some are not as pure as others.

The HUFF POST has an article though a little old now, Petroleum Jelly May Not Be As Harmless As You Think

They explain the origins of where this comes from” byproduct of the oil industry” So therefore not so Eco Friendly either. They do offer some suggestions in what to use instead, from olive oil to shea butter.

WHAT DO THE CHEMICAL NAMES ACTUALLY MEAN?

We really didn’t know where to look at first, I am a mum and definitely not a chemist! also many of the names are so long, they could mean anything, even a good ingredient could be listed in a different way ,that could sound harmful.

( Often we are made to feel safer, because Organic products normally cost more ( You Get What You Pay For? Right?) and because they have the organic label, that means they are totally safe ? but unfortunately you still need to read everything on the label !)

EWG- Is one of my favorite places to check out a chemical name .

Here is a Link to what types of chemicals can be used in products and why, explaining how certain chemicals and products can be ” Green Washed” to hide their true nature.

SOME IDEAS TO MAKE YOUR OWN CLEANSING PRODUCTS

I thought I would start by adding this video I found, Priyanka has a huge following and many tips have come through her family. How many of us have recipes and tips handed down from our mothers and grandmothers?

THIS VIDEO FROM PRIYANKA CHOPRA’S ALL NATURAL D.I.Y SKIN SECRETS

I love this video, she is very easy to follow some great tips

India .com Have “11 Natural Face Cleansers To Make Your Skin Glow Naturally.

I love this website, they often have suggestions that have been passed down. If they have worked for many years, why don’t we embrace them nowadays, we don’t always need to buy a bottle of product that could contain harmful ingredients.

Full Fat Milk” , is the first suggestion, I love the whole back to Cleopatra days! Using as a wash or some in your bath.

Using “Oatmeal “as a natural exfoliator, after grinding some up, add a little oil or water. ( when I was learning about makeup and cleansing, they were warning of some of the over counter products being too sharp for your skin. ) They suggest rice powder too, I was given years ago some rice powder paper sheets to blot oily skin when travelling, it was a lovely idea to pop into your bag. I found some Oatmeal soaps that can be used for exfoliation .

Raw Honey“- antibacterial and moisturizing.( from I have read there is a huge difference in Raw & Processed Honey . Processed does not have as many health benefits. Raw honey will contain little microscopic pieces from the bees , as it is only sieved, and can be cloudy .

NO HONEY SHOULD BE GIVEN TO A CHILD UNDER 12 MONTHS DUE TO BACTERIA

Lemon” if your skin is oily. A little mixed with milk or yogurt ( not sure if that would make it curdle? Need to have a try)

Sugar“- but making sure you use this gently, as they mention it could be too rough on your skin.

Cucumber,” leaving it on your skin for 15-20 mins. ( more information on Cucumbers for your eyes on here )

Coconut oil,” as a cleanser using a little warm in your hands then wiping it off.

( Just beware it doesn’t go into your eyes! I did this by accident yesterday and had a day of a very red watery eye!) I have read that coconut oil isn’t good to use on your face as it could clog your pores, but is great on your body and hair.

Rose Water“- using some cotton wool to cleanse. I love the idea of this , the scent is beautiful.

Watermelon“- using the pulp, this is different, they say that the  malic acid works as an exfoliator!

Apple cider Vinegar“- What cant you use this for! there are other recipes for using this totally versatile product. I didn’t know that it can heal breakouts, good to know.

( I have seen another article suggesting that lemon , cider vinegar or witch hazel could be too astringent on your face )

 “Pomegranate“- As an anti -aging, delaying fine lines. I love this fruit , which is so good for us to eat as well. ( Great for guys as well)

Often cleansing creams can look really pure ,just from their packaging and the perfume added ,they really can lull you into using them ,without actually knowing just what it contains.

I guess the reason that companies use these ingredients is simple, normally for profit, and they are allowed to get away with using chemicals that are not really needed as there doesn’t seem to be enough controls in place. It is MORE THAN 80 YEARS SINCE COSMETIC CHEMICALS WERE REGULATED IN USA !

How on earth is that even possible? How many more chemicals have made their way into our cosmetics and personal care products. Eighty years ago most of these chemicals weren’t even around!

We can see this with a simple example of the amount of chemicals banned in cosmetics in the USA ( 11) compared to the EU( 1,300). There is a good read here on this link for a website called

  BLACK PAINT and 11 Common Harmful Skincare Ingredients.

( From Link Below)

1-“PARABENS” – Normally used to preserve the product- they are inexpensive for a company to use. ( Another view on Parabens by EWG)

2– “FORMALDEHYDE“- Used as a preservative.( EWG – REPORT)

3--“SLS- SODIUM LAURETH SULFATE,SODIUM LAURYL SULFATE“- Used as an emulsifier , and possible links to cancer ( EWG_ REPORT)

4– “PETROLATUM“- A rich Emollient. Found in moisturizing products ( a list of what to look for is on the link above) Another report on these oils by DAVID SUZUKI FOUNDATION & THE DIRTY DOZEN

5-“COAL TAR” — Used to make your lipsticks and eyeshadows bright!

There are a number of products with coal tar being EWG verified which is a good thing

SCIENCE DIRECT .COM Have another report as coal tar can be used to treat Psoriasis

6–“Hydroquinone”- used for skin lightening

MEDICINE NET -HAVE MORE INFO

7–“Triclosan“- anti bacterial properties. ( EWG )

8–“Oxybenzone“- Used in sunscreens ( EWG)

9– “Phthalates“- makes cosmetics less breakable- Can also be in the unlisted chemicals in Perfume and fragrances ( EWG)

10– “Fragrances and Perfumes“- this hides a cocktail of different chemicals , all can be hidden behind a “Trade secret”

11– “ALCOHOL“- there are different types and some are known as drying alcohols. Can be used to mix different ingredients together.

OF COURSE THE PROBLEM WITH ALL OF THESE ARE THEY CAN BE MIXED TOGETHER Of course the problem with all of these products is that by the time a normal person has showered with shampoo, conditioner and shower gel or soap. Then adds their deodorant, hair products and makeup or shaving products, all of these chemicals are blended together !

NATURAL BASED PRODUCTS

California pure naturals– a more natural approach to making products.

This company is one to look into if you are based in the States, they give a comprehensive list on their website .

They make a natural gentle cleansing lotion for dry and sensitive skin.

I have seen some of their products contain walnut, so look at the ingredients if you have a nut allergy.

While living in France I have come across a lovely looking company based in  Marseille France they are called COMME AVANT  they can be found on the link or via their Facebook page .

They are producing Organic hand produced products ( BIO in France) they are offering everything from soaps both for body and hair, toothpastes, deodorants and creams. Many with bases of Olive oil. They ship world wide too.

JUST NUTRITIVE Offer a natural product for face care, scented with essential oils and a mix of seed and nut oils. They make products for Anti-aging and Acne.

MAKE-UP REMOVING CLOTHS

We started using these a year or so ago, amazing how much make-up they seem to remove, without the need of any creams, then pop them in the wash and reuse again.

This link with Amazon gives a variety of the different ones on offer .

Photo by Vitu00f3ria Santos on Pexels.com

COSMETIC TONER

PURISTRY give “5 Toner ingredients to avoid“. This is a well written article with a large amount of information on what each of the ingredients are doing to your skin. Benzoyl peroxide, Alcohol, synthetic fragrances, synthetic skin conditioners, salicylic Acid.

SOME HOMEMADE IDEAS FOR MAKING TONER

For simple Toner I have seen recipes that just use Witch Hazel , probably best diluted. Also always do a test before , to make sure it doesn’t effect your skin. ( as above, I have seen suggestions it could be too astringent and cause redness)

MY AWESOME BEAUTY.COM have a list of” 18 different ways of using witch hazel “in your skin care.

( an article on here for the different properties and uses by HEALTHLINE.COM ) or a mixture of One part of  Organic Apple Cider Vinegar to Four parts of Distilled water.

This video is by the TV program ARIZONA MIDDAY, there is a little information on the program before they get into the DIY products.

PURE ROSE FACIAL TONER BY POPPY AUSTIN 

Organic and handmade by a woman’s co-operative .

They produce many other skincare products, found on the link.

(Info from link )

Contains 100% pure distilled, organic, and unrefined Moroccan Rose Water; This beautifully simple product is rich in natural antioxidants, suitable for ALL skin types (including sensitive skin)

I just love the scent of a rose, most seem now to have lost the fragrance they used to have, it was such a gentleness of a bygone year, when ladies kept out of the sun and protected themselves with hats and gloves.

Photo by The Smell of Roses on Pexels.com

KINGA FACIAL STEAMER – this has many good reviews , at least you don’t need chemicals for this.

( info from link)

  • Opens & Unclogs Pores: Removes Dirt, Oil & Makeup; Melts Away Dead Skin Cells; Make toner, cream and other nutrients absorbable
  • Can Even Replace Chemical Exfoliating Scrubs & Peels

ACNE

We have all had the odd blackhead, often they magically appear if you are due to go somewhere lovely!

At school and college the break outs always seemed worse .

I wanted to find some ways of helping with this.

If you are suffering badly always make an appointment to see your doctor.

These are just ideas I have found but not used .

This Video By ALLURE gives an insight in the different treatments in the past 100 years.

HOMEMADE SOLUTIONS – that you may want to try

HEALTHLINE give some advice here , for the scaring too.

MEDICAL NEWS TODAY give some advice on ACNE , they also cover both medical help available and also “ Top 15 Home Remedies for Acne”

At least with some of these electrical aids for the skin , you do not need to use any chemicals.

BLACKHEAD REMOVER

There are also electric blackhead removers, which I didn’t even know existed!

They seem to have some positive reviews.

Better than some methods I saw when in school YUK !

By VOYOR Electric Vacuum Black Head remover 

( info from their link) This one has  good reviews. From the USA LINK

 POWERFUL BLACKHEAD & PORE VACUUM SUCTION

Gosh who knew these were even possible, I had never seen anything like these.

Can effectively remove the oil, impurities and dust particles in the large clogged pores; Remove blackhead, grease and acne.

EUNON – This one has the highest amount of positive reviews in the UK ( info from link)

“EUNON blackhead vacuum equipped with 4 different replaceable probe heads to address different facial problems, like nose blackheads, comedones, acne, oily coarse pore.”

FACIAL SKIN SCRUBBER – this looks a little different to the Black Head remover. By MANLI

( info from Link)

  • Ultrasonic facial cleaner: Using ultrasonic and nanotechnology, with 24,000 vibrations per second, deep into the skin, massage the skin, promote nutrient introduction and impurity export, and make the skin shiny.

KINGA FACIAL SKIN ULTRASCONIC SCRUBBER SPA . GENTLE PEEL

This is an electric product ( I had never heard, of but it has many positive reviews, and no chemicals needed)

  • Quickly and thoroughly clean up the dirt and corneous ageing substance in the deep skin.

HOMEMADE BODY SCRUBS BY BUZZFEED NIFTY

SOAPS TO HELP WITH SKIN PROBLEMS 

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Before all this research , I thought soap was soap, just a different fragrance or colour.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

BLACK SOAP – There is a suggestion that this could also help with skin problems and Acne.

This soap is made by PraNaturals where they say it is ethically produced in Ghana.

( info from Link)

PraNaturals      African black soap is a unique formula of all natural and organic ingredients that together make the perfect product for skin and face care. African black soap is suitable for all skin types and has been proven to improve rough skin condition such as acne, rashes and blemished skin

GOATS MILK SOAPBY SOAPY SKIN 

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Info from link

  • Made in Lancashire, our goats milk honey oats soap was created to help those suffering from eczema, psoriasis, acne and other skin problems.

I have heard some good reports on Goats milk.

My husbands reaction to Goats cheese, means we have never used any of the products. ( he says he can taste the goats hair in the cheese! I have to admit he did go a bit green)

DONKEY MILK –

We came across these products in France, they are generally considered good for the skin here. Mind the thought of milking a donkey! Gives me a weird feeling.

These come in different products, soap, moisturisers, body scrubs etc.

I have listed some below.

Just a little thought, we found our daughter was allergic to the milk, she is allergic to horses ,so just beware if you also have an allergy in your family. We found she was allergic to these products too.

Some of the Donkey milk products, have other ingredients in them, it is best to read the label.

SAVON DE MARSEILLE

Info from the link DONKEY MILK SOAP (LAIT D’ANESSE)

Sold by ZUBHA who offer many other different soaps.

“Our soaps are made using vegetable oils and are completely biodegradable. They are coloured with mineral pigments and fragranced using essential oils and fragrances from around the world, including the Grasse valley – the perfume capital of the world.) 125g soap bar”

This link to SAVONNERIE PASSION SAVON

A website for pure soaps in France. It is also written in English.

There are some very beautiful soaps, for a little bit of luxury or a beautiful present.

This site has a really good explanation, of what you can find in natural soaps. Explaining about what some companies will put into their soaps, and the reason they use those chemicals.

HOMEMADE SOAP RECIPE BY LEHMAN’S 

This video looks like it gives a step by step guide to what types of oils that you can use. Other videos I have come across seem to start with soap, which I found a little crazy, if you were trying to start from scratch.

After seeing so much bad press now on Palm oil production, I am not sure I would use that, but this video does give some good tips.

SOAP RECIPES 101

Gives a load of soap recipes, without the use of Palm Oil.

BATHING

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

I don’t know about you, but the bliss of taking a long deep bath is pure luxury . To be able to have some time to relax on your own, relaxing your body, muscles and helping to reduce stress.

A little to time to relax in a scented bath, a book or a glass of wine. Gosh I feel like one right now! It is the one time that I don’t feel guilty for having some me time.

What do you use in your bath time routine? Everything we use or eat has some sort of chemical composition, but what we hope is that we can find a product that is gentle on our skin and be as pure as possible.

Here is a link also to my other blog on Bath Bombs and Candles, so that you can find a better product if you like to use these. The Daily Mail Newspaper has a deeper article on these too.

I found a great site called Ethical Superstore.com they seem to have a really great selection on Organic and ethical products for us and the planet. A really great message. They have a great selection of bath and shower products, There are also some great companies out there like Green People

Apartment Therapy have a recipe for a Homemade Bubble bath, the article is an older one, but the recipe a mixture of Castille Soap, like the make Dr Bronner is one that I have recommended before, in another blog on house cleaning, Dr Bronner make a number of different soaps, some very mild ones for babies and some scented with essential oils. A fantastic product and so versatile.

Then you can add essential oils of your own choice, some coconut oil and water making the recipe a simple one.

CLEANSING PADS

In our home we are always using these for make up or removing nail varnish .

ORGANIC.ORG has a list of chemicals that can be found in your cosmetic wipes along with a video.

NATURAL BABY LIFE has a great read on the chemicals that are found in baby wipes. Who amongst us, has grabbed one of these to wipe off makeup, or used it in the car and numerous other places?

Never mind wiping the bottom, or face of a baby or child.

The thought of using these things, which, by the way, takes goodness knows how long to break down in our environment ( around a 100 years!)

It has totally changed the way that I look at these wipes now.

DHC Olive oil cleansing pads

Ingredients ( from link)

“DHC Olive Virgin Oil Swabs are multipurpose, pre-moistened swabs, infused with natural olive oil.”

I happened to see these, being recommended on a video , it sounded a little different to your normal wipes.

Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil

(more Info on link)

  • OLIVE OIL COLD PRESSED 

I have mentioned using CLEANSING CLOTHS too, which safe money in the long run .

DO IT ON A DIME 

has a fantastic homemade baby wipe or a wipe for most things, it is the easiest looking one that I have found so far. Amazing!

I wish that I had seen this video, when my daughters were young.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO FIND MORE INFORMATION ON A CHEMICAL OR PRODUCT CLICK HERE

SKIN SANITIZER

I thought I would put a couple of things on here to do with the very scary virus that is currently working its way around the world right now. I don’t know if you have been looking for a hand sanitizer , we were looking for something ,really for our daughter or us to use when we were out or at school and not able to wash our hands with soap and water which has been recommended by all the information I have seen lately.

Then it got me wondering just was in it? was it safe, does it work? You want to feel safe both ways, one from the chemicals and the other for the virus.

This video from the National Geographic , explains what is in the gels, also suggesting that just adding normal alcohol that you drink ,not working, which is different to some of the posts that I have seen on Social Media, where they have suggested using a cheap Vodka. They suggest that the alcohol content is not strong enough.

After looking at a load of videos, there seems to be a ton with vodka, which after seeing the video above, I am not too sure of . This other video below is made by a pharmacist, so hopefully this will give a good idea of what you can make at home. When I lived in NY I often used these chemists.

With all the worry over the COVID-19 Virus, we are all being advised to wash our hands properly. How many people have you seen, just walk out of a public toilet with seeming, not knowing where the sink and the soap are !

I find that crazy, it is one of the first things that we taught our daughter, it should be second nature. So I had a look and below there is a great little video from the WHO who give detailed instructions on how to clean our hands properly. Stay safe!

I saw a good little tip the other day, Someone suggested keeping a basket of flannels next to the sinks so that people could dry their hands then put them into the wash. At least you don’t have to launder huge towels every time.