Shopping for your "who's been naughty, who's been nice" this Holiday? Trouble finding skincare and body care gifts people will actually enjoy using? We're here to help make sure you're up to date and in the know! When it comes to gift giving be sure you're selecting environmentally safe gifts that aren't cruel to animals. Know one wants to intentionally harm humans, animals, or the earth. There's nothing worse than getting a gift that is harmful or made with cheap chemical ingredients that make skin problems worse.
So how should you pick your skincare gift giving this year? Naturally! What ingredients are deal breakers? Here's the top 5 you should absolutely avoid at all costs (and a few you definitely want to include!) if you want to make a great impression as well as stay healthy and vibrant this holiday.
Avoid Parabens. Which are “foreign- estrogens," also known as Xenoestrogens. These bind to estrogen receptor sites inside your body with potentially hazardous outcomes. Foreign estrogens are not the same as "phyto-estrogens" - which naturally come from plants and help regulate estrogen and is an adaptogen and can help balance estrogen levels. Xenoestrogens are not naturally occurring. Sources of Xenoestrogens include BPA plastics, pesticides, chemicals, and water systems and are also used as a preservative in many skincare products (not ours). They are added to extend shelf life and prevent creams and lotions from going rancid and growing bacteria and molds. The problem with parabens is that they are chemically made and aren't found in nature. They confuse the body and overload it chemicals that the body can't always do away. Using something once or twice is probably not an issue however, skincare is something we apply again and again. Over time these carcinogens can build up in our tissue and make it's way into our blood stream and into our vital organs. Remember that your skin is the largest organ in your body. Organs are the filters for all your blood and chemical processes inside your body and interact with and break down everything you put on and inside your body day after day. FIltering and protecting you from damage is a huge job and requires mass energy and resources for our filtering organs, skin, liver, pancreas, kidneys, adrenals, etc,. to work and function properly. Each system has a very specific and complex jobs to do. Throwing chemicals that are not natural into the mix creates maladapted responses from our cells and systems. This is why many eat whole food plant-based-diets - to avoid the addition of chemicals and to prolong health. You certainly don’t want your skincare to alter your health and hormones because that can lead to breast cancer and other forms of cancer as well. There are much better more natural preservatives in clean and natural skincare to choose from so always . locate an “Eco-Cert" preserved product because this is the only approved natural broad-spectrum bacteria and mold preservative allowed in Certified Organic products. It’s what we use in all of our skincare here at Me and a tree.com and it works amazingly well.
Ethanolamine- used to make skincare products feel silky and smooth on the skin. Think creamy and smooth. They feel a certain way initially but they don’t after a while. The skin will feel dry in a few hours, and the natural thing to do would be to keep applying your moisturizer! See the catch? Here’s what nj.gov has to say about the chemical when asked if it is safe for skin “Is ethanolamine safe for skin?" Answer) Ethanolamine is a CORROSIVE CHEMICAL and contact can severely irritate and burn the skin and eyes with possible eye damage. * Breathing Ethanolamine can irritate the nose, throat, and lungs causing coughing, wheezing, and/or shortness of breath. * Ethanolamine may cause a skin allergy. So, that's on the naughty list and should be avoided altogether. Ethanolamine- is linked to liver cancer and precancerous changes in the thyroid and skin so again you want to avoid anything that adds to your chances of acquiring cancer. The human body is already dealing with pollutants and free radical damage daily so why put that added variable into the mix?
Phthalates- they go by many different names (DBP (dibutyl phthalate DNOP (di-n-octyl phthalate DiNP (diisononyl phthalate DEP (diethyl phthalate BBzP (benzyl butyl phthalate DEHP (di 2-ethylhexl phthalateDiDP (diisodecyl phthalate DnHP (di-n-hexyl phthalate DMP (dimethyl phthalate DnOP (di-n-octylphthalate Bisphenol A (BPA)
They are used to make products more PLIABLE or liquid. They too may be linked to cancer and birth defects. This again is not something worth buying when there is an alternative (and there is). Avoid them and find soaps, and anything “scented” to specify that it is phthalate-free. All of our soaps, and every single product we make is free from any and all phthalates.
Polyethylene Glycol/ Propylene Glycol is also known as PEG compounds. Used to thicken and is used often as a moisturizer. Check your day/night creams and make sure they do not have those ingredients. 1,2-dihydroxypropane, 1,2-propanediol, methyl glycol, and trimethyl glycol.They are often contaminated with other carcinogens and should also be avoided. Additionally, they are used in Jet fuel- where they should stay away from as choices matter.
- Formaldehyde Releasers. also known as quateranium, DMD, hydration, and Diazolidinyl and when applied to skin cause DNA damage and cancer by releasing formaldehyde.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN SKINCARE INGREDIENTS
Healthy ingredients to include on your list of skincare selections. Opt for clean beauty. No formaldehyde (nail polish), phthalates (scents) , or SLS (lathering agents. Me and a Tree product offerings never contain any of these ingredients.
TIP: Here's what to include in your ingredients list when shopping for natural skincare ingredients. Look for olive fruit oil, avocado oil, sweet almond oil, evening primrose, borage, vitamin E, Tamanu Oil, Rosemary Oil to name a few.
When searching for ingredients in skincare specifically soaps, lip balms, lotions, and creams, avoid cheaper oils such as rapeseed, canola, corn oil, sunflower oils as these while being cheaper, also go rancid significantly fast. Rancid oils do not benefit the skin, and worse they can inflame the skin. Corn, canola, and the list above are indeed cheaper for manufacturers but the products don’t last as long and effect all the other ingredients by breaking down quickly. Another reason why harsh preservatives are used- they are cheaper. If a rancid oil is covered up with a harmful preservative and additionally a scent with added phthalates then you add three poisons for the price of one. Naughty list for sure and not in a good way. You're not benefiting your cells with the nutritive healing if your products are breaking down and also filled with chemical soups. Go for the more luxurious additions like sweet almond etc. The cheaper oils also have a tendency to cause more bad skin reactions and breakouts, especially for sensitive prone skin.
Cheaper ingredients and oils are not as emollient, moisturizing, or skin healing as the the oils we recommend above. Additionally the oil we recommended above are also beneficial as they naturally lend themselves to a longer shelf life and longer life span of your natural skincare creams lotions & products.
I hope this list is helpful! Have fun selecting natural ingredients this holiday that keep your body healthy and vibrant along with keeping your skin clear fresh smooth and free from free radical containing chemicals because you deserve the very best and so do your friends and family! Have a Wonderful Happy Holiday! Don't forget to support small business! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!