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Is it time to ‘Detox’ your make up bag?

Wow, 14,054 of you have read this.

515 chemicals

We all want glowing, youthful skin don’t we ladies? And I am sure that we all want to feel healthy, fit and ready to make 2015 a year to remember.

Well for all of those to happen, you may be surprised to know that detoxing your make up bag can have a huge impact.

Did you know the average woman applies over 315 chemicals to her face alone, simply through her morning make up routine?

This was something that I hadn’t even thought about up until about 5years ago.I just considered my make up and skin care routine as something I put ‘on’ my skin. Oh how wrong was I!

What does my skin do?

Our skin is so much more than just a shell to keep our organs in place. Our skin is one of our biggest detoxification organs along with our liver, lungs and kidneys. It is also an organ of absorption, meaning what you put on your body goes in your body. In fact toxins can be more harmful when they are taken into the body through the skin than if we were to eat them as they bypass the liver which normally helps to break down and excrete toxins

So top tip for you all: If you wouldn’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin!

Now when you look at that fact…over 315 chemicals from make up alone…now add into that equation the rest of the personal care products we use on a daily basis and you may begin to see why it is easy to become a toxic time bomb simply through our morning regime.

Think of your body like a bath. If your bath was overflowing would you turn off the taps and pull the plug out or would you just get a mop? Now I am no expert in plumbing, or cleaning for that matter (my partner can vouch for that!) but I would imagine the best thing to do would be to turn off the taps and pull the plug. But so many of us just continue letting the bath overflow and try and mop it up. If we can reduce the toxins we are taking in in the first place, not only will our skin improve but so will our overall health

If you are struggling to lose weight, it could be because of a toxic build up. Your body is a fine piece of machinery. Rather than letting the toxins run rampant and do harm, your body wraps those toxins in fat cells. Your body will not let go of those fat cells unless you reduce your toxic load.

As well as the toxic effect some ingredients can have on our bodies, they can also wreak havoc on our skin. Nobody should have sensitive skin, yet over 50% of the population say they have sensitive skin! WHY? Because we are slapping a load of harsh chemicals on our face and bodies day in day out!

Now the problem is, marketing is very powerful AND clever. Not only that, you look at the ingredients list and it may as well be written in Chinese!

Through my slightly odd obsession with reading ingredients lists, I want to share some of the key culprits to look out for so you are well equipped to make smart choices when it comes to your cosmetics and skincare regime:

  1. Petrolatum or petroleum based ingredients: The clue is in the name…petrol! This ingredient is in a vast array of products on the market and is a by-product of crude oil. NICE!! It costs more to dispose of environmentally than it does to sell to the cosmetics industry. It is like cling film, sitting on the surface of the skin, stopping anything getting out or in. It may make your skin feel silky smooth but it stops your skin from breathing and producing its own natural moisture. Its ageing effects on the skin are doubled when exposed to sunlight so think of all the anti-ageing lotions and potions or sunscreens that are loaded with this ingredient.
  2. Animal By Products – the average woman ingests approximately 4lbs of animal blubber through lipstick alone…need I say anymore!!
  3. Parabens – Chemical preservatives added to products to give them a longer shelf life. Evidence has shown that parabens may be linked to breast cancer, thyroid problems, allergy and obesity
  4. Sodium Laurel Sulphate – a chemical that is in the majority of products that foam. It is the leading cause of dermatitis in the UK and has been known to cause hair loss…figure this one out…it is in shampoo and conditioner?!
  5. Formaldehyde releasing preservatives – linked to allergic reactions
  6. Pthalates – Used in cosmetics to hold colour and scent
  7. Chemical dyes and fragrances – skin irritants, causing sensitivities
  8. Triclosan – Found in products labelled as ‘antibacterial’, deodarents, toothpastes and cosmetics

Our everyday products could be causing increases in the risk of dermatitis, eczema, allergies and asthma as well as having the potential to disrupt the fine tune of hormones we have in our bodies which can lead to much larger health concerns as well as weight issuespink and white make up bag

Beauty isn’t just about vanity, its about living a health filled, vibrant life. Of course we can’t wrap ourselves in bubble wrap and it’s not all doom and gloom, I promise! There are many products out there now that are conscious of the effects of these ingredients, but are also effective and do what they say they are going to do on the tin…double bonus! After all we all want to look great AND feel great, not one or the other.

In my next blog I will be filling you in on how to keep wrinkles at bay meaning you will need to keep your ID handy for at least the next 10 years!

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Helen Mirren
Over-50s women spend most on make-up

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