Across skin and haircare, home products and day-to-day life, we expose ourselves to roughly 130 chemicals every single day. Parabens are particularly common in beauty products, as they work to mimic natural hormones and
have the potential to produce adverse effects on the body. Along with parabens, synthetic fragrances, artificial colours, sulphates, silicones and mineral oils are commonly used in the cosmetics industry (they also happen to be on Sukin’s famed ‘No’ list). While skin was once thought of as a near-impenetrable barrier, it
has since been proven that up to 64% of the products we apply topically are absorbed into the bloodstream, so by eliminating unnecessary toxins here, we go a long way to reducing overall chemical exposure.
A similar principle applies to the products
we use in and around the home. If we’re using harsh, chemical-packed home cleaning products, we end up breathing them in- plus, in the case of fabric softeners and washing detergents the residual chemicals end up on our skin, and when we look at dishwashing liquids, the remnants of the products are often ingested.
The products we use (not just their packaging) can also be of detriment to the planet, as any harsh-chemical filled liquids that are washed and rinsed down the drain end up in our precious waterways.
Choosing more natural, sustainable products, both for cosmetic use and around the home, can dramatically reduce your impact on
HOW TO EMBRACE A NATURAL BEAUTY ROUTINE
Skin & Haircare and general beauty products can be a great starting point in the move towards leading a more natural lifestyle, particularly if your intention is to begin with
the products that cover the majority of your body (i.e. body washes, lotions and self-tanners) before gradually working through to home products.
Start by identifying the harsh chemicals that you want to work to avoid. Sukin makes this process really simple thanks to their ‘No’ list – an extensive list of the most common chemicals, toxins and irritants found in beauty products.
To ensure that your beauty routine is as safe for your skin as it is for the environment, look for brands that formulate Carbon Neutral, grey water safe products in recyclable packaging. Rather than overhauling your entire routine in one hit, make the process less intimidating and easier on the hip pocket by swapping out your products as you reach the end of what you’re currently using.
HOW TO GO NATURAL AROUND THE HOME
To start living a more natural home life, look for home cleaning products that are also free from harsh toxins and chemicals. Of the chemicals we expose ourselves to each day, approximately 62 of those are found in the home. Any products you spray become airborne, thus ending up in your airways, while anything you scrub, or wash will likely come into contact with your skin, so making more natural choices around the home can be the safest option for you and your family.
The most common toxins found in home cleaning products are Phthalates, Butoxyethanol, Perchloroethylene, Ammonia, Chlorine, Triclosan, Sodium Hydroxide and Quaternary Ammonium, so look for products that include natural alternatives to these traditional foaming agents and disinfectants.
As per your beauty routine, swap out your home cleaning products as you finish what you’re currently using, rather than a one-hit overhaul.