Ditch and Switch: Body Lotion

Your skin is your largest organ. Everything you apply to it gets absorbed within seconds so it’s important to lather up with safe, nourishing ingredients.. not TOXIC ones!

Lotion is a product I am often asked about so I spent the entire afternoon digging through dozens upon dozens of labels to make a list of safe recommendations for you ladies… just to be disappointed by most.

Some brands like Bath & Body Works we ALL know aren’t clean, but there’s a lot of greenwashed brands that make it a little harder to figure it out. Greenwashing is when a company markets themselves as being clean but behind the nice sounding marketing claims, it still contains concerning ingredients. You have to look past all the fancy words and go straight to the label.

Label Reading Tip: Don’t worry about knowing what every single ingredient is. You can usually scan for a few common offenders and not even have to worry about the rest. A good trick is to start at the bottom of the label and scan backwards. Skip right past all those natural sounding buzz words on the label and start at the end where they hide all the preservatives, fragrances, and things they hope you don’t spot!

Check for any of these common ingredients:

❌ PARABENS: used as a preservative that prevents the growth of bacteria, mold, and yeast in topical products. Parabens possess significant estrogen-mimicking properties that are associated with increased risk of breast cancer. These chemicals, directly implicated in breast tumors, are ABSORBED through the skin. 99% , 60% . These same chemicals have also been found to slow the production of sperm and lower the testosterone levels in males.

PHENOXYETHANOL: I’ve talked about this sneaky little “green” preservative in detail. This is what companies are using in place of parabens. In a nutshell, it is neurotoxic, damaging to DNA, and especially toxic to babies, a fact that even the FDA has acknowledged, which says a lot! Plus, The American Society of Contact Dermatitis lists phenoxyethanol as one of its core allergens. Even in concentrations as low as 1%.

❌ FRAGRANCE: fragrance mixes are an unregulated chemical soup, which are linked to allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system. More than 75% of products containing fragrance also contain phthalates which disrupt hormones, reduce sperm counts, and cause reproductive malformation, and have been linked to liver and breast cancer, diabetes, and obesity.

❌ PEGs (Polyethylene Glycol): a group of ingredients with the prefix “PEG-” followed by a number. They are made by the process of ethoxylation in which carcinogenic ethylene oxide is reacted with other ingredients to make them less harsh on the skin. As a result of the ethoxylation process, 1,4-dioxane is created and can be left behind in the product. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has classified 1,4-dioxane as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans” and there is NO safe exposure amount.

Petroluem Based Ingredients:“A liquid mixture obtained from crude petroleum oil used as a skin moisturizer. It may contain various amounts of carcinogenic PAHs (Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons) and other petroleum contaminants, depending on the level to which it has been refined. There is consistent evidence that untreated or mildly-treated mineral oils cause cancer of the skin in humans.” Additionally, the issue with petroleum is that it creates an illusion that your skin is moisturized but it really just creates an airtight barrier on the skin, not allowing your skin to breathe and suffocates your pores. While you may feel temporary moisture, you’re actually drying out your pores by keeping air and moisture out.

These are probably the top ingredients that you will find in lotions, but obviously there are tons more! If I see any of these ingredients, I put it back. There are SO many great companies who are doing the right thing and making safe products!

Toxin Free Lotion Recommendations:

…And so many more! What safe body lotions have you found?

For a complete list of toxin-free recommendations, check out the Toxin-Free Masterlist. Also find a full list of Banished Ingredients.

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