Chemicals in our daily rituals

How many chemicals do you have in your home? How many of them are toxic?

When we think of toxins, we usually think of the strong smelling bleach and similar substances many of us use to clean our toilets, bathroom and drains. Most of us wouldn’t consider our soap, shampoo, face wash, body moisturisers, make-up, sunscreen and toothpaste to be toxic. I certainly didn’t. That is, I didn’t until I started researching all those long ingredient names on the back of my products that I struggle to pronounce.

I couldn’t believe how many endocrine (hormone regulator) disruptors, carcinogens and neurotoxins (brain toxins) that I was lathering onto my skin every day. After all, our skin is a porous organ that will absorb much of what we lather on, straight into our bloodstream.  

The products used and sold at Livewell are free of nasty chemicals. Our Baby Bear Shop products are 100% organic and contain only natural ingredients- perfect for pregnant mums and bubs. Our range of Ila products are another welcome reminder that beautiful and effective products don’t need to contain toxins. Ila sources its products ethically and sustainably from artisan producers.

The last two months has been a process of research and discovery for me in trying to get rid of all of these nasties from my home. To help you on your own journey, I have listed 10 of the most common and dangerous chemicals that are found in many personal care and household products.

Tampons are another product of concern. Cotton farming uses some of the most hazardous pesticides in use today which have been linked to infertility, neurological dysfunction and developmental defects. Tampons usually contain bleaches, phthalates, neurotoxins and synthetic musks. An individual tampon contains a very low risk, however the average woman uses 11 000 in her lifetime. Furthermore, our tampons come in contact with the most sensitive, absorbent part of our body. The good news is that there are companies who produce organic, unbleached tampons and pads, cloth pads and silicone and natural rubber cups. Click here for more information.

There are some internet sites that refute the claims that many of these cosmetic ingredients are harmful for our health.  However, there are so many more independent studies that do show the harmful effects of these chemicals. Furthermore, there are no comprehensive studies that show the accumulated effects of all the different types of toxins we are exposed to everyday.

It is worthwhile taking a list of harmful ingredients with you the next time you go shopping for cosmetics and household products (or come into Livewell and we can show you a range of products that are effective and toxin free!) By avoiding these dangerous chemicals, you will be not only helping yourself and your family, but the natural environment as well.

References and Resources

I found most of my information from:

http://safecosmetics.org/section.php?id=46

http://safecosmetics.org/article.php?list=type&type=47

Other websites of interest are:

http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ (US database of products with information about their safety/toxicity)

http://www.safecosmeticsaustralia.com.au/ (Newly started Australian company that provides independent accreditation of the safety of personal care and household products.)

http://www.gorgeouslygreen.com/ (blog containing product reviews and DIY product recipes)