What lies beneath the surface…

I am a self proclaimed product junkie. There. I said it. I have piles upon piles of makeup, body wash, styling products, lotions, nail polish, you name it! While I have made a huge change in my lifestyle over the last couple years in regards to food and exercise, the things I put IN my body, I completely disregarded the things I put ON my body. This is really quite silly since your skin is the largest organ and it doesn’t take long for your body to absorb those nasty chemicals in your lotions, makeup and soaps.article-1229275-07498D23000005DC-57_964x1071

I got out a pen and paper and wrote down every product I use on my body every day. Guess how many I had?? 30! Yes, that’s right, T-H-I-R-T-Y different products. Hey, don’t judge! I challenge you to count yours up.

Here was my list, now mind you not every product I use every day – such as shave cream (especially in the winter, that stuff collects dust!) or nail polish/remover, but the rest are pretty much part of my daily routine.

Body wash
Face wash
Eye makeup remover
Shave cream
Body spray
Body lotion
Hand soap

Eye liner
Lip balm
Lip gloss

Heat Protector
Hair Serum

Laundry soap
Dish soap
Household cleaners

Other non-daily products
Nail polish
Nail polish remover
Air fresheners
Bug repellant

I don’t consider myself high maintenance, but seriously, look at that list! YIKES!!! While I do tend to not wear makeup or shampoo my hair when I’m just bumming around on the weekends; during the work-week I pretty much use everything on that list. Now, how many chemicals are absorbed into my body? Too many to count – seriously, I tried, there were too many.  There are many articles out there debunking the saying “you absorb 60% of what is applied to the skin” or “it only takes ___ seconds for your body to adsorb chemicals” (you can check out an interesting one here.) Some molecules used in beauty products are too large to be absorbed through the skin’s many layers into our blood stream, they differ from things like a nicotine patch or the birth control patch with are designed to have very tiny molecules that are easily absorbed into the skin. Every product is different. Scientists cannot yet prove how much or how fast a product is absorbed as it depends on many factors such as health of the skin, site of exposure, temperature and it varies per individual. They do all agree that there is some sort of absorption.   Whether or not the above statements are true, I still want to make an effort to use all natural, organic products on my skin to reduce any chemical absorption no matter how minor it may be.

Take a few minutes and head to the Skin Deep Database to see how your beauty products measure up. You simply type in a product or brand name and it will give you a score of either 0-2 Low Hazard, 3-6 Moderate Hazard or 7-10 High Hazard.  Even a few of my so-called “natural” products had a high score. Don’t be fooled by marketing and fancy terms!  When you are shopping, scan for these common chemicals and give them the boot if you see these sneaky fellas in there: sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate, parabens, diethanolamine (DEA), triethanolamine (TEA), diazolidinyl and imidazolidinyl urea, PEGs, phthalates, quaternium 15 and fragrance.

I have made it my mission to swap out all my health/beauty products for all natural, chemical free ones. I’m not doing it all at once (my wallet would not like that!) And I don’t like to be wasteful, but the second my current products run out, they will be switched out. I have started already. Here is my list so far and what I think of the products:

Body WashBurt’s Bees Cirtus and Ginger – $7.99/12 fl oz. I love this scent! It is fresh and not overpowering and leaves you feeling squeaky clean! Cruelty free, no artificial ingredients, petroleum free, phthalate free, sodium lauryl sulfate free, 100% recycled container, 97.06% natural.
Face Wash/Toner/Moisturizer Clear Advantage Clarifying Set Arbonne – $86 for face wash, toner, moisturizer and spot treatment. This lasts almost 3 months. A little goes a long way. At first I wasn’t too sure about this product as my skin wasn’t really clearing up but I’ve been using it since February I am really noticing a difference. I have less breakouts and the ones I do get dry up very quickly.
Eye Makeup RemoverAlba Botanica – $6.99/4 oz. This removes eye makeup easily with no irritation. 100% vegetarian, no animal testing, artificial colours, parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium myreth sulfate.
Shaving CreamAlba Botanica Foam Shave in Mint – $6.50/5 fl oz. I’ve tested this out a few times and while it doesn’t foam as much as my old brand it still does a great job and leaves my skin feeling smooth. I also like the light minty scent.  100% vegetarian, no animal testing, artificial colours, parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium myreth sulfate
Body SprayGud Body Mist in Vanilla – $5.99/3 fl oz. I’ll admit I wasn’t a huge fan of this scent (one of the downfalls to ordering online – you can’t smell it!) I took a leap and figured if it was a vanilla scent I’d like it. Its started to grow on me but not sure if I will buy this scent again. No parabens, phthalates or petrochemicals.
DeodorantAlba Botanica Lavendar – $5.99/2 oz. So far this has kept me feeling dry and smellin’ fine! It is gym tested and approved! I like the clear formula because it doesn’t leave those white marks on your clothes. I also found the scent to be really mild and not overpowering like the Dove deodorant I was using.  100% vegetarian, no animal testing, artificial colours, parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium myreth sulfate.

ShampooFC5 Arbonne – $22/296 ml – I really like this shampoo, it has a light scent and rinses clean.
ConditionerFC5 Arbonne – $20/207ml – This conditioner won’t weigh your hair down and makes it soft and shiny.
Hair Styling CreamAndalou Moisture Rich Styling Cream – Argan & Sweet Orange – $9.95/6.8 fl ox (I paid 6.95 on Amazon.com) – At first I thought this was a bit sticky but once I combed it through and blow-dryed it left my hair feeling pretty smooth. It also has a nice orange scent to it. Made naturally without GMO’s, gluten, paraben preservatives, petrochemicals, phthalates, sulfates, synthetic colors, dyes and fragrances. Verified gluten-free, 100% eco-friendly, vegetarian & cruelty-free.
Hair SprayHoneybee Gardens Alcohol Free Hair Spray – $8.50/8 fl oz. This was the only product that I was not a fan of. It’s quite sticky. I did not like the feel of it at all. It would work for a slicked back pony tail but not if I was curling my hair. However, it is a natural, vegetarian hair spray that contains no alcohol to dry hair, no lacquer to coat hair, no propellant to preserve the ozone layer and no PABA.

Foundation Perfecting Liquid Foundation Arbonne $53/30ml – This is by far my favourite foundation, and I have tried many! It is pricey but worth the investment. It goes on silky smooth and washes off easily.
MascaraHoneybee Gardens Truly Natural Mascara – $9.50/0.2 fl oz. I really like this mascara, it doesn’t clump after two coats and comes off easy. Paraben free.

Nail PolishOPI – “Since 2006, OPI has reformulated its entire line of Nail Lacquers, Nail Treatments, and Nail Hardeners to eliminate DBP (dibutyl phthalate) and Toluene.  Formaldehyde has never been an ingredient in OPI Nail Lacquers or Nail Treatments.”

To find out more about Arbonne’s products and ingredients click here. If anyone is interested in purchasing Arbonne products you can let me know because I’m a consultant!

Well there you have it! That’s just the beginning; I’ll update the list as I add new products. I’m also going to try to tone it down a bit too and not use as many products – less is more! I mean after all, I don’t want to start looking like Mimi…mimi

Additional info….

This article contains all natural skin care routines as well as homemade lotion recipes.

Check your beauty products here.

10 Simple Ways to Green your Beauty Routine


What Chemicals Should You Look Out For In Your Personal Care Products?


  • Must Have Boxes June 20, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Love your beauty product selection!

    – KW

  • trixfred30 June 20, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    My wife swears by Clinique – Take off the Day, eternal youth serum, you name it she’s got it. Thank god she isn’t into Creme de la Mare – that stuff is more expensive than its weight in gold. Or platinum. Or anything!

    • thehappyhealthfreak June 20, 2013 at 1:24 pm

      Ohh yeaaa! The good stuff is always pricey… but I’m sure it’s worth every penny. Until we find the fountain of youth of course.

      • trixfred30 June 20, 2013 at 1:31 pm

        I’ve found it! She’s 6 years younger than me! hehe.

        • thehappyhealthfreak June 20, 2013 at 1:34 pm

          Awww! Nice 🙂 I’m 4 years older then my husband. ..what does that say!!? Besides cradle robber.

          • trixfred30 June 20, 2013 at 1:42 pm

            What they say over here is ‘what’s good for the goose, is good for the gander’. Go figure

          • thehappyhealthfreak June 20, 2013 at 1:48 pm


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.