27 January 2009

Just Say No

... to sodium laurel sulfate, that is. And parabens. And the host of nasty things that they put in soaps and shampoos because no one has really proved that they're not really very good for some people to apply topically.

Further to my last post, I've gone even further down the path of the unwilling consumer. Figured out that my eczema-ridden skin was angry because I was exposing it every single day to those chemicals listed above. Who knew a shower could be so toxic?

Now, here's my disclaimer: most people don't react badly to sodium laurel sufate, parabens and panthenol. That's why they're omnipresent in personal hygiene products. They're also cheap cheap cheap - great for mass production and keeping costs low. However, for those of us who just can't deal with the chemical onslaught waged by everyday life in North America, finding stuff that works just as well but doesn't end up with us scratching like we have fleas is a challenge. So, I've compiled my own list of Stuff That Won't Hurt.

Shampoo - Desert Essences or Prairie Naturals

Soap - ha! Fooled you. Can't use soap - it foams. Go for an oil or a homemade salt scrub. Take some organic sunflower oil (takes about 4-5 tablespoons) and combine it with plain old sea salt (4 tablespoons-ish). You can add a drop or two of grapefruit essential oil if that makes you happy. Scrub down. Rinse off. If you find you're still oily when you get out of the shower, it's cool. Just rub it into your skin as best you can - it'll absorb eventually. Herbal Choice Detergent Free Natural Body Wash is another option.

Dish Soap - always wear gloves. Seriously. I use Method dish soap as it works pretty well, but I still don't touch it.

All-Purpose Cleaning Product - Vinegar and Water. Get a sprayer thing from the dollar store and make enough of this stuff to last you through the winter. It's just one part water, one part vinegar - equality rules.

That's the short list. I don't think anyone actually reads this so I'll keep it brief. I think I'm getting healthier as I make these daily choices, and if anyone is reading this then maybe they'll think about their options, too. Maybe.

No comments: