Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Week 1

Thank you for being part of this four-week series! Let’s dive right in to this week’s content, shall we?

The Skin Absorbs:

We’re exposed to so many toxins that we have very little to no control over (which can feel defeating). But good news — there are many things we CAN control, so let’s focus on some of those!

We CAN control, for example, the things we put ON our bodies, which are then absorbed through our skin (which, as a reminder, is an organ) into our bodies. While one of the skin’s main functions is to protect our bodies from internalizing pathogens and microbes, it DOES absorb a percentage of the products we apply…and if those products contain toxic ingredients they can really start to burden our bodies and increase our risk profile. (Remember this visual?)

Knowing this, it’s so important to understand that what we put ON our bodies matters as much as what we put IN our bodies.

It’s also important to know that many mainstream personal care products and cosmetics contain harsh ingredients that have been definitively linked to health concerns, including breast cancer.

For this week’s giveaway entry, take a quick tally of the number of products you use on your skin daily — everything from shampoo to body lotion to face wash to foundation. This helps illustrate just how important making safer choices is, because we all use A LOT of products, even if we’re more “low maintenance” when it comes to this stuff. What’s your final count? Let me know by replying to the email that sent you to this post!

But what about FDA oversight…?:

So if there are products that have these harmful ingredients, surely the FDA or some other governing body is able to do something about that, right?

Unfortunately, the answer is NO.

(Remember how I mentioned Beautycounter is constantly advocating for increased legislation when it comes to ingredients in personal care? Yep — this is why.)

There are only 30 ingredients banned from use in personal care products in the U.S. Let’s compare that to the 1,4000-ish ingredients the European Union bans from THEIR products for quite the staggering contrast!

The FDA also doesn’t have the authority to require a recall for personal care brands. They can REQUEST that a brand recall a product found to have harmful ingredients, but the brand itself has to make the decision to recall the product.

Making Safer Choices:

You might be thinking, “I can just look for products that tell me they’re safe or clean on the label then, right?” That’s not always the case, thanks to “clean washing” and “greenwashing,” which is something we’ll dig into more in a future installment of this series.

What you CAN do is:

-Turn to TRUSTED clean brands that have lots of ingredient and sourcing transparency, such as Beautycounter and others, including Innersense Beauty, ILIA, Kosas, and Vapour.

-Use resources like the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep website or Healthy Living app to help you vet individual products for safety.

-Avoid products that include the ingredient “fragrance” or “parfum,” as these are umbrella terms that cover thousands of chemicals. Companies do not have to disclose these chemicals on the label for “trade secret” reasons, which means we can’t be sure how safe those products actually are.

We All Deserve Better:

If there’s one message I want to send to you today, it’s this: WE ALL DESERVE BETTER!

We deserve to know what ingredients make up the products we put on our skin, in our bodies, and use in our homes every day. We deserve to know about the potential harm we are exposing our children to. We deserve to be protected by federal regulations so that it’s not up to us to decipher what is on our products’ labels.

At Beautycounter, there are NO secrets about what goes into each product. We stand proudly by our full transparency policy, meaning you can find a full ingredients list for every product on our website!

Watch this three-minute video to learn more about the lack of regulation in the beauty industry and what Beautycounter is doing about that. For a BONUS giveaway entry, tell me what stood out to you by replying to the email that sent you to this post!

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