The vast majority of us use a variety of products in our daily skin care regiments. Some of the most important aspects of our grooming lie in both cleansing and then moisturising, and the best products to use tend to be the most natural. The benefits of avoiding potentially harsh chemicals or other abrasives in your soaps and lotions are numerous.
Those of us that suffer from allergies need to be especially careful, but even those with normal skin that doesn’t tend to irritate easily can react to ingredients in a soap or lotion. Unless you’re allergic to a natural product (milk, nuts, and certain fruits) you’re likely to do far better with a product that contains no chemicals or synthetic ingredients. Often natural soaps are made using goats milk, which most of the population can use even if they have allergies to cow’s milk. Artificial colours and fillers can also harm skin or cause you to break out in blemishes or a rash.
There are a lot of products made with ingredients or through processes that have a decidedly negative impact on our planet. Chemicals are released into the air and our water sources, or into the soil. These pollutants can last for years; some will last for decades or even through generations. Ingredients that are grown organically limit these pollutants and help to keep our planet healthier for both current tenants and future generations.
Parabens are used in many health and beauty products to help increase shelf life by acting as a preservative. Parabens can also mimic our own natural hormones which can alter your endocrine system. Your endocrine system regulates numerous processes in your body, including growth, development, metabolism, tissue and sexual function, mood and sleep patterns. The side effects of using products with parabens can cause many health problems; some of which are still being studied and discovered. With natural preservatives as options (like grapefruit seed extract) it seems silly to choose ones that potentially cause harm. Natural preservatives offer no ill health effects even with long term use. It’s also important to note that although we recognize and understand most allergens to natural products, this is not the case with many synthetic ones.
Natural products of course offer lovely natural scents, and often include pure essential oils if the ingredients don’t have any or don’t have a strong enough scent of their own. Essential oils can offer a whole host of their own health benefits (aromatherapy, anyone?). Fragrances used in synthetic products often use scent to mask awful chemical smells that would turn away even the most determined customer...and for good reason!
Many synthetic products contain a variety of fillers or irritants that don’t help or benefit the customer in any way. While the products may seem to do the job they were purchased for, over time you may begin to notice ill effects that often stem from incorporating harmful chemicals or ingredients into your grooming routine over time. When you use products that use only natural ingredients, there are no ill effects and they will offer the same benefits from the time you start using them right through.
It’s important to remember that our skin is our body’s single largest organ. It has the ability to absorb more than 50% of what we apply to it. There are a number of natural ingredients that do a wonderful job when it comes to cleansing or moisturizing our skin.
Shea butter is the fat that is extracted from the Karite tree nut. It is often used to help alleviate dry skin and keep it healthy and moisturized.
Green tea isn’t only for your morning enjoyment in your favourite tea cup! It also wonderfully reduces inflammation and can help heal damaged skin.
Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant and can also help reduce inflammation and skin irritation.
This is often found in naturally made soaps and can actually help attract moisture to skin, keeping it soft and smooth.
This article was written by Nina Wells from The Steam Shower Store. She has over 10 years’ experience in writing health related topics and specializes in the health benefits of saunas and hydrotherapy.
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