Did you hear about this study out of University of California, Berkeley, that shows that after just three days of using makeup, shampoos and lotions free of hormone-disrupting chemicals, levels of those chemicals in the body dropped up to 45 per cent? That means switching your body care products right now will make a difference right away.
This study is not new news, just more growing evidence linking endocrine-disrupting chemicals to neurobehavioral problems, obesity and cancer cell growth. The issue is one for us all -- and even more urgent for women, and especially teens, since no group is exposed to more products, generally speaking, every day.
(Photo: Utka Mandarinka via Getty Images)
Last year, Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay $72 million in a lawsuit that linked their talcum powder to cancer (despite the company's attempts to cover up concerns). The fact that the burden of proof lies with us, as consumers, to prove that a product is making us/has made us sick is so wrong.
The good news is that there are so many clean, healthy options that are great and effective, and are far more luxurious (real ingredients that nourish and protect our skin, rather than cheap fillers and preservatives) made by good companies and good people! If you feel that you can't make the best choice when you're buying because of cost, just buy fewer products so you can buy better ones. Here are a handful of my favourites.
Plus, a healthy skincare routine can extend far beyond the cosmetics and skin care products you choose to put on your face. What you put into your body, and what you are exposed to in your environment can make a huge difference, too. Stick to the basics, and feel good about caring for your largest organ.
Read the label.
Anything synthetic placed onto the skin is absorbed into the skin. Living cells respond to other active ingredients. Not synthetics. When you read labels, look for full disclosure and a complete ingredient list -- ingredients that you can read and recognize, and understand their origin (helpful hint: if there is no ingredient list at all, that is a sign to stay away from the product completely!). And beware if you see "perfume" or "fragrance" listed as an ingredient. Remember, if it's on you, it's in you.
Defend your face.
Wear your SPF rain, shine or snow. Sun rays penetrate into the skin whether you can feel them or not. Avoid age spots, early signs of aging and prominent wrinkles by protecting yourself. SPF is the last product you put on before your makeup. It doesn't matter if it's in your cover-up or your facial moisturizer, but you need to be using it. Practice safe sun and choose an SPF without any toxic chemicals! And, of course, don't shy away from physical barriers to those rays like hats and sleeves.
At the end of the day, caring for your skin is just like caring for the rest of your body.
Carry a safe, reusable bottle, and sip filtered water through the day.
Feed your skin.
Eat clean protein, fat and antioxidant rich foods, and avoid binge eating to fight off free radicals that cause pre-mature aging.
Stop poisoning yourself.
Cut back on refined sugar, alcohol and processed foods. Consuming these products cause the body's collagen to collapse faster and promote break outs because the liver can't thoroughly digest these foods.
Cut back on animal products.
Limit or avoid dairy and red meat. If you don't choose to cut animal products out entirely, always choose organic and know the farmer. Conventional animal products have antibiotics, steroids and hormones that are absorbed into our blood and cause cell malfunction.
Get off your butt.
Sweating rids the body of toxic build up, increases blood flow and delivers fresh, healthy nutrients to our cells resulting in a more youthful appearance.
No heavy metals allowed.
Use a filter in your shower to help rid chlorine and heavy metals that negatively affect your health and appearance.
Don't sleep with the enemy.
Change your pillow case often to avoid bacteria and dead skin from penetrating into your complexion while you sleep. The bacteria multiplies and will accentuate blemishes leading to more breakouts.
At the end of the day, caring for your skin is just like caring for the rest of your body: it comes down to cleaning up your routine, integrating what you know into your lifestyle, and being proactive with your health.
Check out the Borden Big List for more suggestions and resources.
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A simple mixture of shampoo and water is great for cleaning your brushes. To see exactly how to do it, continue clicking through.
Use your tap to rinse away most of the excess dirt, makeup, and oil stuck in the bristles. Keep the bristles angled down and try not to get water under the metal clasp, as it could loosen the glue.
Mix about a teaspoon of shampoo with 1/4 cup of lukewarm water and swirl your brush tip around in it. We like using Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo -- if it's good enough for baby skin it's good for us!
Once you've swished the brushes around, remove them from the water and massage the bristles between your fingers to loosen up the makeup and dirt. Then, run the bristles under warm water until it runs clear.
Once you've rinsed the brushes and the water runs clear, you can use a clean dry towel or cloth to remove some of the moisture.
Reshape the bristles with your hands and then lay brushes flat to dry. Make sure none of the outside bristles are bent.
A sponge and a little bit of soap make makeup brush cleaning a breeze. Juct click through to see how to use this method.
Apply a dime-size amount of gentle soap/cleanser/shampoo to a clean, damp sponge. Make sure the sponge is brand new, as you don't want gross kitchen bacteria to transfer onto the bristles of your brushes.
Lightly rub the brushes over the sponge in a circular motion to saturate the bristles in soap. Don't press too hard, as you don't want to damage the brushes.
Rinse the brushes under warm water to rinse off the soap and dirt. If you see residue after rinsing, repeat step two and three again. Once your brushes appear to be clean, lay them flat on a cloth or towel to dry.
These household ingredients are also great for cleaning and disinfecting your makeup brushes.
Popsugar suggests mixing your ingredients on a clean plate, to give yourself ample room to swish around the brushes. Don't use a paper plate, as the oil will seep through.
Loosen the dirt and makeup by running your brush (or brushes) under warm water. Make sure to hold the bristles down to protect the brush.
Once you coat the bristles in the oil and soap mixture, massage it in using your hands. Continue until the residue comes out clear. Then, rinse with lukewarm water until all the soap is gone.
Once all the dirt, grime, and makeup are washed from your brushes, lay them on a towel to dry. Pro tip: prop up the towel with a second rolled up towel, and place the handles along the higher end. This will allow the water to drain down.
There are plenty of makeup brush cleaners on the market that allow for easy brush cleanup. Just spray the solution -- we like Sephora's Master Cleanse: Daily Brush Cleaner -- on a dry towel or cloth and rub the brush with it until dirt and oil are removed.
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