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CREAMS AND SKIN CARE

The potential dangers in some products that we use

(Updated 01 Jan 2021)

WHAT ARE THE DANGEROUS INGREDIENTS IN MOISTURIZERS?

The Ingredients often found in body creams are – Parabens, Fragrance or perfume ,BHA, DMDH HYDANTOIN

( Formaldehyde Re-leaser) Preservative, TEA, Pigments for colour, Mineral Oil, SLS and the list goes on!

It is best to read the one that you are using, to get a clearer picture.

 I was reading a really clear Blog by BYRDIE .COM about non Toxic Makeup .

This very informative article goes into each of the chemicals that we put on our bodies, with the reasons why we should make that change that we have probably been putting off.  Also some brands that she has tried to make a change to her own routine. 

Through reading her website , I came across the story of a young Cancer Survivor of 21 years old , on just what chemicals she avoids. 

This story really makes you think of the potentials dangers in some of the products that we use without thinking about, on a daily basis. 

One of the Companies that she recommends is a company called HONEST.COM they are based in the USA and have a great ethic of being up front on their ingredients and the amount of chemicals that you will never see in their products. The founder is Actress Jessica Alba. 

I have seen some mixed reviews on some of the products with issues with some of the included chemicals, I have recently seen that they have re- branded some of it. 

With the situation of Covid 19 at the moment ,I just wanted to add some information to help us all, with our skin under the masks that we are all having to wear.

PROTECTING YOUR SKIN WHILE WEARING A FACE MASK

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If you had told me a year ago that we would all be wearing face masks, I would never have believed it. Just how much our world has changed in such a short amount of time!

Of course we want to protect ourselves ,family and friends.

Protecting the most vulnerable amongst us. Of course wearing a mask is so important.

It can cause issues with our skin. Some people are getting blemishes and spots, dry skin and other skin problems.

I came across an article on the inside.upmc.com by Suzan Obagi, M.D , she mentions also flare ups of eczema and acne. She is suggesting using a light moisturiser and not heavy ointments, or a light sun lotion, also no makeup under the mask.

She also gives tips on wearing your mask correctly, with ideas on how you can stop your glasses from steaming up, by using a light medical tape across the top of the mask. I find I get less moisture on my glasses if I am wearing a mask with the wire to adjust the mask to my face, across the nose.

UH HOSPITALS.ORG – Go into the very real problems with skin conditions by wearing a mask for long periods, from Acne ,Red Rash sore ears from the elastics.  Rosacea from the heat beneath the mask.

If you have a beard or leave stubble, this can cause discomfort as the hairs can catch in the fabric of the mask. Finding a smooth fabric with a higher thread count to avoid the hairs catching, or of course you could shave if you are wearing a mask every day.

You can find a larger type mask made for men with beards( on link above) If you are wearing N95 type mask, not to use a barrier cream as that can effect the fit of the mask.

‘MASKNE’ – Mask & Acne – or skin problems. Masks made from cotton and soft fabrics can help( IF you are not working in the health industry).

( from Link –  some commercial face masks are pre-treated with formaldehyde to disinfect them. If you’re allergic to that chemical, those masks could spark a breakout. )

Using gentle unscented products and light moisturizer at night may help your skin.

WEDERM.COM have a number of ideas too, also using light moisturiser, but also maybe leaving off the eye makeup, unless you need a boost , also washing your face after removing the mask. Some good tips, as I think we will be wearing masks for some time to come.

So I guess the best makeup is to concentrate on our eyes, if you need a boost, as these will be much more expressive for people to read your emotions.

I really feel for people who have to lip read. I have seen some masks online with a plastic insert to enable the mouth to be seen. A great idea.

Also on the market is a plastic insert that you wear behind the mask to allow easier breathing like these. If anyone has breathing problems, wearing a mask just adds to this.

RAFINOVA – Make a ‘ Smile mask’

BABY JACK & COMPANY – These have some really bright colorful masks with a clear window.

Some here on Amazon.com by BBTO

THE CLEAR MASK – Has been featured in a number of Articles and has been ordered by UK Government and passed by the FDA

ADCO – a company that makes hearing products

Mask Management for Dry eyes and misty glasses by College Optometrists– A friend shared this information today.

Really helpful for all of us who wear glasses. There is something that they call Mask Eye, where there are people suffering eye discomfort from wearing the mask, they give information on what can help. Also offering advice on foggy glasses.

Part of which is a product called anti-fogging spray or wipes.

A really helpful article .

MAKING YOUR OWN AT HOME – BODY CREAM

There are a number of DIY recipes on line also for making your own body cream.

There are a ton of internet recipes using coconut oil, some more complicated than others.

LITTLE GREEN DOT – Have a whipped Body Butter, combining just two ingredients, an Oil ( your choice, eg coconut oil, avocado oil, more suggestions on the link) Then a butter for example – Shea butter ( we use this one all the time, Mango or Cocoa Butter.

The recipe reminds me a little of the shaving butter on the men’s blog, which is fantastic from BUMBLEBEE APOTHECARY . This is whipped up a couple of times. .

We have tried adding Lavender and another with grapefruit or citrus to creams that we have made . Though I have read, not to use a citric oil if you are going into the sun as it can attract too much sun to your skin. 

USING COCONUT OIL

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CAN YOU USE COCONUT OIL ON YOUR FACE EVERYDAY?

(I think after reading to some of the information out there, I am going to stick to using Coconut oil in blends for the body or as a boost to dry hair.)

I saw a really good YouTube video today , the lady was a Esthetician and suggested that it is better to use coconut oil ,on either your hair or body and not the face, as it can cause blockage of the pores.

It can be beneficial for some people who have dry flaky skin, but not great for everyone. Don’t buy the refined type, as there are more health benefits to the virgin type. We have a shop near us where the organic one is the same price as normal, guess which one we pick up!

Into The Gloss – also have a similar message, dont use it on your face it blocks your pores, yes for your body.

It can be used as a makeup remover but rinse skin afterwards.( I used this method about two weeks ago, and got it in my eye! It took two days for the swelling to go, so be very careful not to get it into your eyes)

They mention not using it as a mask, very hard to get out! I have found it works great in very small amounts warmed up in your hands then a small amount on the ends of your hair.

ALLURE have a ton of ideas for using coconut oil ( 30 ways in fact ), some are really surprising, for example getting rid of head lice

( a much healthier way than all those chemicals)  This link is to Our blog on getting rid of head lice.

USING A PRESERVATIVE TO PREVENT MOULD

The last thing you want after all the hard work and expense is for it to go off!

After writing this blog, I have come across a website called LUISA FANZANI  suggesting the use of a preservative to help prolong your products and not allow any bacteria and mould to grow. 

Other butters and oils that can be used are-

SHEA BUTTER can also be used in your blends for body creams.

ALMOND OIL ( remembering to check no one has any nut allergies) can be used as a carrier oil as well for essential oils.

JOJOBA OIL can be used for hair skin and nails

COCOA BUTTER This can be bought whipped too.

ARGAN OIL I have seen this suggested for anti- aging moisturiser , hair growth and nails .

This organic SHEA BUTTER is produced by PraNaturals. I have been using this in our homemade creams, it really thick in the container, almost solid, also trying to wash the spoon afterwards is quite hard without really hot water.

HANDMADE BODY CREAM 

This sounds a lovely Body cream, for hands and feet as well.

Made by ANCIENT GIRL KITCHEN

ORGANIC BEAUTY RECIPES.COM have a number of lovely sounding body creams. Using Shea Butter, Unrefined Coconut oil, beeswax and camellia seed oil. She has a number of lovely sounding and easy to follow recipes.

Written by EVE. 

I know we don’t always have the time, nor the inclination to make our own products.

So I have been researching some products that are out there, hopefully some will be useful to you if you would like to try something new.

This article in the VOGUE INDIA

Gives some really great reasons, why we should use COCONUT  OIL , in our SKINCARE and HAIR ELIXIRS .

They give some DIY methods, of using Coconut oil as lip scrubs, scalp treatments for dandruff. Also as a  body scrub to reverse an uneven tan.

What is a Good Chemical Free Moisturizer?

Just to be able to take care of your skin without having to read a label- Bliss! A bit further down I have information on cracked skin, basically your hands, check it out.

BEESWAX NATURAL FACE CREAM

This product beeswax cream is sold on Amazon by FISYO – this one sounds great, wonderful natural products .

It contains Beeswax , Olive oil, Coconut and Argan oil, Aloe Vera, Avocado, Almond oil, Lavender, Vitamin C, Essential oils- Geranium and Sandalwood, it is not made with water, so that makes the product more concentrated. It should last a long time.

THE DIVINE COMPANY – Based in Australia , Organic Ingredients-Also they have many EWG Verified products, that always gives me confidence. They offer Divine Woman, Divine Man & Divine Baby .

C2 CLEAN BEAUTY– They have a list of the worst 20 chemicals to avoid in skincare- They go even further by screening out 5,000 + Toxic ingredients. Very impressed with the care this company is taking with your health.

SALLY B SKIN YUMMIES– Organic when possible and some are on the EWG Verified. List of products on link.

MINERAL FUSION – Another company awarded the prestigious EWG Verified. Made in USA

LOOKING INTO SOME REPORTS I FOUND ON

BIO OIL

I have friends who use this oil, I see advertisements for it all the time on T.V. They have a good marketing campaign 

I must admit, I was curious to see what it contained,and what type of Oil was in it. 

The first set of ingredients are all recognisable  but not the Purcellin Oil part .What is this oil?

I had a look online to see what information I could find.

It would better, if you want to look deeper,to have a look at  these articles, to find out more, and make up your own mind.

Ingredients- as on Amazon link. 

Vitamin A, Vitamin E, Calendula oil, Lavender oil, Rosemary oil, Chamomile oil/ Trade Marked Purcellin Oil.

I did a quick search on EWG they have it listed as a 7 RED the breakdown is on their report.

I have found three different interesting articles about the oil  from-

FROM SOUL TO SOLE

HEBE BOTANICALS

YMC THE YUMMY MUMMY CLUB 

SKIN WHITENERS

I decided to write about these today. It isn’t something that I have ever used or to be honest thought about. Today I saw that some companies have decided to withdraw these products, which they were basically selling in countries such as India and Asia. One of these companies is the huge Johnson & Johnson(Today On Line). With all the world wide calls now for Black Lives Matter , ( they would be removing brands that have been criticised for using racist imagery to sell products.) this statement was on the link for NY TIMES .

This got me wondering ,what on earth can they put into a cream to bleach skin. It actually sounds quite worrying too. They call these creams a number of names such as Whitener, Brighteners, fading creams. They can have such ingredients as Mercury or hydroquinone . I think it is disgusting that they are not allowed to sell products like these in USA & UK, but can get away with it in other countries! Of course you can suffer with mercury poisoning. On the website for Today On Line, in Singapore they highlighted 5 different skin whiteners the contained Mercury . Here is a quote by them ( can click on the link to read more)

“Deeja Cosmetic Wrinkle cream” was singled out by the HSA for its mercury content, which exceeded permissible limits by more than 40,000 times.

I can understand wanting to even out some skin tone or brown patches of skin, especially if these are effecting your confidence. But everyone’s skin has its own unique and beautiful colour. That is what makes our world so interesting and diverse.

Bellatory have a list of 8 natural solutions to this, giving reasons why these work and the effect they can have on your skin. These range from Citric to Licorice extract. A whole lot healthier!

WebMd give advice on skin whitening. The toxic effects that this can have on your body.

A really lovely article on Be SKIN INFORMED, they have many of the same ingredients that have been mentioned before, such as citrus , but they also suggest other ingredients such as Gram flour and Turmeric! which was a total surprise, I imagined it changing your skin a yellow color.

BLACK SOAP – ( Sorry this was the nearest picture I could find for coloured soaps!)

Another interesting product I had never heard of was African Black Soap. 

This can be used to wash your hair also.

It did make me wonder if any colour, would leak from it, similar to charcoal.

This article on MNN.COM  gives an idea of how Black soap is produced and the benefits of using it. 

There is some reviews which say it is a little messy , others saying it is worth some mess.

Our friend says it is so lovely she uses it before special occasions.

They say it can also help with acne .

A patch test is recommended before using to make sure there is no allergies with the product .

This Black Soap is produced via PraNaturals, who give more information on the product. This one is Organic too.

It does contain sustainable palm oil.

Dudu Osun is another make on the market, with a pack of six soaps available.

Some very interesting comments on the reviews. It seems to be natural too , but I am not sure it is organic.

SOAP IN GENERAL 

I love the idea that you can choose a soap that doesn’t have a ton of chemicals in it. 

I was looking in our local supermarket for a normal soap for my husband, gosh it was as if you needed to have a science degree. The list of ingredients on a bar of soap is crazy. Never mind the ton of artificial scents in it.

When we were living near London, we used to visit Covent Garden. There was a fantastic shop who sold olive oil products scented with lemons, It was like walking in heaven going through that door. The soap was expensive but that scent!

I love the idea of a natural soap. We have some really good Braderies in France which are like one off street markets, with a whole host of products for sale.

The last one we went to had a huge soap store, made by hand with different oils and natural herbs. We bought a soap specifically made for hair. Can you believe it is still going!this has lasted for months, maybe it is my secret plan as my family are so heavy handed with any liquid products.  The soap are interesting to use for the first few times as the lathering up is not as much as you would expect from a shampoo. 

They were all very homemade looking which was a nice change. They reminded me of when my grandmother was still with us and she used to have these green soap bars in the house. 

CRACKED SKIN 

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I don’t know about your hands , but mine in the winter are like a weather vane!

As soon as the first cold winds blow, my hands start to break down, something I can attribute to my dad, thanks dad!

As they say your hands can give away your age!

We take so much care of our face but our hands are often a forgotten part of us. My mum has always been careful, she doesn’t go far without her rubber gloves to wash up or clean. Not a bad idea really, I don’t know about you, but I remember after I have done the job!

There was a recent article about dry and cracked winter skin in FORBES – 9 Best Hand Creams For Dry , Cracked Winter Hands

They mention the use of a sun protection built into the cream for our hands, it makes sense but how many of us think about applying sun cream to our hands? I have to admit I hadn’t given it a thought. They suggest a cream with sun protection made by Supergoop , I have checked out the products on EWG which range from a very good 1-2 to a 5-6 on other products. To Look deeper here is their website.

The products on their list really vary in the listings on EWG, just check out the ingredients.

I can totally relate to this as this week we are due -3% weather , and speaking with my parents today they have -6% that is so cold!

I know when I lived in NY it used to be so cold my face used to hurt with the winds. Even with gloves on, you could feel your fingers freezing and that tingling feeling as you got in the warm again! I think I have got used to being here with a milder temperature.

CREAMS TO USE FOR YOUR DRY SKIN 

I love to look on the EWG Verified list for products as you know that what you are buying has been scrutinized, it is not easy to get on their verified list. Some of the creams that they recommend are

Paul Penders Marigold Handcream– contains 22 selected organic herbs

Lowen’s Natural Skin Care Rub it in Why Don’t Ya! Hand and Body Lotion I love the name on this one! This doesn’t have a scent, it is good to have that option if fragrances affect you. Also a finalist for 2020 clean beauty awards, it can be used as an all over moisturizer. They also offer eco refills too.

This family run business has great ethics and do a large range of products rom moisturizers, lip balm and baby products.

BIOS Organics Natural CBD Hand Moisturizing Cream– Organic products with CBD oils. This ethical company have a range of CBD oil products, beautiful. Some of their products are produced for pain relief.

MAKES 3 ORGANICS – some really lovely sounding essential oil and organic products available here too They have so many products on the EWG Verified list which gives me a lot of confidence in their products and ingredients.

Today my husband pointed out a company, that have just received an EWG verified, which is not an easy achievement. The company is called PRIMA

Their creams look amazing, just the list of ingredients and essential oils, based on CBD which has organically come from Hemp.They have a 100% clean commitment for products. The ethics of this company look fantastic, from sustainability to commitment to the growers of the hemp.

Other Hemp Products

Photo by Washarapol D BinYo Jundang on Pexels.com

Following onto the effects of natural Hemp oil. There is a product that I came across on Amazon.com called Zatural, they have many products with Hemp Oil, which can be used on your skin , hair or internally. The reviews look good.

Photo by Oliver King on Pexels.com

Here is a link to a number of Hemp Oil products. I haven’t looked into all of them.

BOTANICAL S -Organic

This looks very soothing, for very dry cracked skin.

Mint and Tea Tree essential oils. No water, Parabens or chemicals.

Not for Nut allergies.

It is great, because it doesn’t contain water ,so it should last longer, more concentrated.

SOOTHING HAND AND BODY SALVE also by BOTANICALS .

Lavender and Chamomile again Organic and Natural .

This seems worth a try. I have seen advice before, on putting cream on at night then covering with  cotton gloves.

Very Jane Austin, but good advice. 

I found this link for some cotton gloves and socks, maybe for hands and heels?

These are by HusDow

These other gloves are by JASMINE SILK and are one size. Not sure if they would fit a guy? Or would they wear it? probably not.

  • Naturally Hypoallergenic – Relief from itchy skin conditions such as rosacea and eczema

Could help with skin problems, there is a load of allergies in our family, anything that works is great. 

de Mamiel.com Really wonderful looking creams and oils, with many different oils and essential oils. Even products for sleep and to energise you.

I came across a recipe today for Cooling Foot and Leg Butter – this was by Bren Did – sounds a wonderful mixture of cooling essential oils to make you feel refreshed. For hot and tired feet. I think with all the shopping and cooking for the seasonal celebrations, we could probably do with a bit of TLC.

There are some Organic ones on Amazon too

REMOVING UNWANTED HAIR

WAXING OR SUGARING 

This is something that I have never attempted or used before.  

I wanted to see what these products had in them.

I guess we have all seen those funny T.V programs where some poor guy has been roped in to have a waxing. 

We have a friend who is a cyclist and does have to remove the hair from his legs for better air flow on racing days.  We have watched the Tour de France , which came near our home about two years ago, makes you wonder how they all go about getting rid of the hair on their legs. 

I know there are many women and men who visit a clinic for these treatments too.

I guess that can get expensive. 

LIVE ABOUT.COM explains more of how these chemicals work on the hair, to remove them. 

WOMENS HEALTH MAG.COM have a really informative article on which is better for your skin, waxing or sugaring. They mention on that in Waxing, you can often find preservatives and Resins.

Also that sugaring is less painful! Interesting to see some caution too. Good advice on being careful when it is hot! 

Products that seem less harmful 

I hope that these have a better ingredient list for you to look at. 

MOOM ORGANIC HAIR REMOVAL these ingredients seem to be more natural , a list is on the link.

They also have a travel kit one , which is great for holidays. Also they make hair removal products for men. 

NAD’S NATURAL HAIR REMOVAL GEL this product on Amazon has mostly natural ingredients as written on this link but it does have two colours included.

I have put a link to these ingredients from the EWG site for you to take a better look. 

CI 19140 (Yellow 5)   and 

 CI 42090 (Blue 1).

ALOE VERA

Aloe Vera is such an unusual looking plant, at first I thought it was a type of Cactus. 

We had one plant that just went huge, they are very easy to cultivate more plants from. As they grow larger they have “BABY” plants growing on the edges, these are easy to replant. 

PraNaturals

Pure Aloe Vera Gel  ( a list of the ingredients this has many uses for the skin , organic 99% naturally Bio Active, there seems to be a few other ingredients so I have added the link to the site. 

They also offer a recipe to make your own scrub using the gel.

Aloe Vera is great stuff,  I usually have a plant growing in the kitchen, in case of burning myself on the oven ,as it accelerates the healing process.

You can also use Aloe Vera in a drink form, to promote a healthy digestive system, and it can also help with cankers in the mouth.

It seems by the comments on the link , there are people using it as a slimming aid. More Information on this blog

I am not sure what ratio you would need for that to be effective. It may help with boasting your metabolism rate, or improve your sugar levels.

There is also a few recipes on the same website, that use the Aloe Vera gel in shampoos or conditioners. 

This one is made by ALOE PURA , I have used this brand before.

They do give some advice— I wasn’t aware of this before.

Safety Warning

Avoid use when pregnant or breast feeding. Not suitable for infants.

ALOE VERA JUICE MAX STRENGTH, I don’t think this one is Organic but it has a large number of people recommending it, plus the price is reasonable.

WHAT OTHER WAYS TO USE ALOE VERA 

There is a great article, on all the many ways that Aloe Vera can be used.

They are on this link for Medical News Today

HEALTHLINE have 7 Amazing uses for Aloe Vera , including the uses for heartburn, and after sun , a different type of mouthwash, Lowering your blood sugar , natural laxative ( warning on another study on the link that if a whole leaf was eaten could produce tumors in rats in studies)

Skin care and a possible for the fight against breast cancer ( more on the above link)

GREEN PEOPLE

Is another great place, to find information on what is found in products , also safer products for everything from shampoo, children, sun care and men’s products. These can also be found on this link with Amazon . 

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