Toxic Thursdays-Lotion

15 Dec

Toxins in Lotion?

(Source)

Welcome to the next installment of Toxic Thursdays!  If this is the first Toxic Thursday post you have read, check out the first post on shampoo.  Each Thursday, I am highlighting a body care product, explaining the potential toxins in the body product and suggesting healthier, safer alternatives.  Today we are going to talk about lotions.

Is my lotion toxic?

Maybe!  The easiest way to tell is to check out the EWG’s Skin Deep Database.  Here you can search for your lotion and find out if it has any potential toxins in it.  If it does, look for safer alternatives or check out some of the recipes below to make your own, toxin-free lotion.

What are some toxins in lotions?

Some of the most common toxins in lotion and their side effects are:

1. Phenoxyethanol- a colorless, alcohol used as a preservative in cosmetics and personal care products which can cause pruritus (general itchiness) (Source)

What pruritus looks like:

(source)
2. Ethyhexyglycerin– a weak preservative which can cause contact dermatitis (source)

What contact dermatitis looks like:

(source)

3.  Parabens- which you can read about in this post.

4. Dimethicone- a silicon-based polymer used as a lubricant and conditioning agent which can cause contact dermatitis (source) (see above).
The take home message, similar to that in the shampoo post, is just to be aware of what you are putting on your body.  Studies must be done to determine how these toxins can build-up in our bodies and  and what the long term effects may be.  Even though a huge body of evidence does not exist directly linking these toxins with severe health concerns, if we can take easy steps to remove these potential toxins, why shouldn’t we???

What are safer alternatives?

If you would like to buy safer alternatives, here are some options.

Burt’s Bees Hand Salve from Amazon

JASON Moisturizing Creme

Garden of Eden Hand and Body Creme

Can I make my own lotion?

Of course! Here is a great and easy recipe.  You can customize your lotion by adding essential oils (which have their own health-boosting properties and I will address in a later post).

I simply order shea butter direct from Africa off Amazon, melt some in the microwave, add a little coconut oil and let it re-solidify.  I slather it on my hands at night and lock in the moisture by wearing gloves.  This is a cheap and safe alternative to store bought lotions.

This website shows you which oils you can add to your shea butter mixture to customize it to your skin texture and tone.

Oily, Acne-prone Grapeseed, jojoba, neem*
Dry, Aging, Damaged Sweet almond, avocado*, borage*, calendula, jojoba, kukui nut, olive, rosehip*, sea buckthorn*, St. John’s wort
Normal, Combination Sweet almond, apricot kernel, jojoba, sunflower
Sensitive Apricot kernel, avocado*, calendula, grapeseed, kukui nut, rice bran
Eczema, Psoriasis Calendula, sweet almond, avocado*, castor, evening primrose*, jojoba, kukui nut, neem*, olive, rosehip*, sea buckthorn*
Scars, Stretch Marks Calendula, castor, jojoba, kukui nut, rosehip*, sea buckthorn*

Question?

Do you believe toxins in lotion are a concern?  What lotion do you use?

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5 Responses to “Toxic Thursdays-Lotion”

  1. Elba Cotto January 3, 2012 at 7:23 pm #

    I like this weblog so much, saved to my bookmarks. “Respect for the fragility and importance of an individual life is still the mark of an educated man.” by Norman Cousins.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    […] this is the first Toxic Thursday post you have read, check out the posts on shampoo, lotions. and body wash.  Each Thursday, I highlight a potential source of toxins in our everyday lives, […]

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    […] this is the first Toxic Thursday post you have read, check out the posts on shampoo, lotions, body wash, mercury levels in fish and food preservatives.  Each Thursday, I highlight a […]

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