Come again? What are you on about I hear you say! Well, I have a question for you. A few in fact. Have you ever wondered what makes your body wash lather so well? How do they get it to smell so good? Where does the colour come from?
You may have heard of some of the following; triclosan, sodium lauryl sulphate, sodium laureth sulphate, parabens, fragrance, DEA, synthetic colours, propylene glycol, or ethyl alcohol.
Well, not to try and scare you, but many of these toxic chemicals have been linked to decreased fertility, hormone disruption, skin or eye irritation, allergies, or are considered carcinogenic (cancer causing).
Triclosan is an antibacterial agent commonly found in antibacterial soaps, and is considered a pesticide by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the USA. Sodium lauryl sulphate is an effective foaming agent, present in household cleaners and de-greasers. Parabens preserve the life of other ingredients, and extend the product’s shelf life; yet at the same time potentially cause hormone disruption. Propylene glycol is the main ingredient in anti-freeze.
Scary stuff isn’t it? My theory is, if you can’t pronounce it, or you don’t know for sure that it’s safe, why use it? I’m as guilty as the next person for using beautiful smelling body wash, and not thinking twice about the ingredients. However, with your skin being your largest organ, maybe it’s time to reconsider your washing regime. There are safe options out there.
What is safe?!
What can I use you ask? How about soap? It’s what our grandparents used, so it’s kind of old school really. And what exactly are the benefits of using soap? Why should I do it?
Aside from the above-mentioned nasty chemicals found in commercial soaps and cleansers, how about some of these reasons:
Environmentally friendly – If you buy natural soap, it comes in a bar form. Much less waste in terms of packaging
No synthetic lathering agents – Soap makers often use things like castor oil or coconut oil to help get a nice lather going
No harsh chemicals – You’ll find ingredients like coconut oil, olive oil, water, charcoal, clay, cocoa butter, or shea butter in natural soaps. Yes, you’ll find lye (sodium hydroxide), but this is what makes soap soap! Once processed, it’s safe.
Affordable – Being more conscious, or healthy, doesn’t have to be expensive. It may even be cheaper to buy natural soap than to buy fancy body wash.
Supporting local/small business – More often than not, you’ll find some passionate individuals behind some of the best natural products out there. And, sometimes they live in your town! It’s always wonderful to know the person you’re buying from.
So there we have it. Have I given you some food for thought? We’re all so busy in life, and it’s difficult to be a conscious consumer all the time. However, it’s also great to take a proactive interest in your health and wellbeing. If you’d like to take a look at my latest creations, click here. And feel free to tell me what you love! I’m a rather large fan of vanilla or clove scents, but we’re all different.
P.S. Make sure you keep your soap as dry as possible when not in use. Use a well draining soap dish. If left sitting in water, it disintegrates much faster than it would otherwise.