This March, we're dishing out the dirty on toxins. What they are & how to identify them and how you can reduce or eliminate them in your everyday products. Each week, we'll be focusing on a theme to dive deeper into the category and also pair them with an Instagram-exclusive giveaway!
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Week #4: Clean Up your Outdoor Routine
Toxins lurk in about 70% of the products we use daily. From sunscreen and bug spray to outdoor candles and fertilizers/weed killers. In fact, very few sunscreens provide adequate sun protection and are free of harmful ingredients. According to the EWG (Environmental Working Group), the FDA raised concerns about the substantial skin absorption of certain toxins in conventional sunscreens, and their potential to affect hormone levels and the increased absorption susceptibility of children (FDA 2019). Lab studies shows that some chemical UV filters may mimic hormones, and physicians have reported sunscreen-related skin allergies, which raises important questions about unintended human health consequences from frequent sunscreen application.
We recommend Babo Botanicals - Mineral sunscreens create an external barrier to protect the skin without permeation. It's safe, effective, great for the skin, lips and perfect for babies and adults alike.
We recommend our Hemp Lip Balm - made with cold-pressed organic hemp seed oil which reduces inflammation (goodbye wind or sunburned lips!) and helps retain moisture, protecting and nourishing lips from the inside out.
In addition, most conventional insect repellents contain DEET (also listed on labels as N, N-Diethyl-m-toluamide or N, N-Diethyl-3-Methyl benzamide). DEET is highly effective at repelling mosquitoes, but is also an eye irritant and can cause blisters and rashes. DEET has been associated with lethargy, confusion, disorientation and mood swings in rare instances. These concerns have actually resulted in Canada’s banning DEET in concentrations higher than 30 percent. In any case, it’s wise to minimize exposure by selecting a product containing 10 percent or less.
We recommend Bug Soother - it's made with insect repelling and soothing essential oils like lemongrass, lemon, vanillin, castor oil and vitamin E. Never any DEET or harsh chemicals. It also smells pleasant and is safe for kids and pets!
Sunburns hurt and wreck havoc on our skin. Even with the best sun care practices, sometimes burns can happen. When they do, we reach for the aloe. But, not all aloe is the same! Often touted for its soothing qualities, aloe vera is most commonly used as a topical ointment for burns, sun damage and skin abrasions. While aloe researchers report that the aloe vera plant contains over 200 biologically active constituents, the aloe polysaccharide is the main naturally occurring active constituent in aloe vera that allows all of the benefits to be activated in the body. Polysaccharides are safe in all toxicity studies, showing no side effects. Conventional/non-organic aloe can often times be watered down or fractionally-distilled, which reduces the benefits and absorption. Sometimes colorants are also used. Pure aloe should always be clear.
We recommend Lily of the Desert - They added a patent-pending concentration of high-molecular aloe polysaccharides, derived from the inner filet of aloe vera plants. AloeAbsorb optimizes the benefits of aloe vera by maximizing nutrient absorption.
Here are some tips and natural alternatives to using toxic, chemical-based outdoor products:
- Look at the ingredients of your sunscreens – reach for a mineral sunscreen that includes zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide vs chemical sunscreens. Avoid SPF above 50.
- Oil of eucalyptus is considered an insect repellent – try to use natural bug sprays with this ingredient
- Use Borax to kill pesky weeds instead of Round-Up
- For sunburns, use 100% pure aloe, coconut oil or green tea leaves for inflamed skin
- For insect bites: use clay, witch hazel or 100% pure aloe