This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tom’s of Maine . All opinions are 100% mine. When I developed Hashimotos, I did not make the connection between my condition and the food I was eating…let alone the products I was putting on my body! I needed easy steps to transition to natural products.
4 Easy Steps to Transition to Natural Products
I started with diet. I eliminated gluten, then dairy, nightshades, eggs, nuts, and seeds (yes, it’s a lot), my symptoms weren’t improving the way I had hoped. And then I started doing some research.
Like me, you’re probably not surprised to learn that some of the toxic chemicals detected in the bodies of those tested are common ingredients in mainstream personal care products. That is a huge chemical load to carry around in our bodies. And a lot of it is from common ingredients in mainstream personal care products. Once I found this out, I knew that I needed to make a change. See, the average woman applies at least 10 different skin care products on her body every single day. Since our skin acts more like a sponge than a barrier, we absorb the nearly 130 chemicals we regularly expose ourselves to.
I knew I had to made bigger, broader changes, and sooner rather than later. I couldn’t afford to just toss everything at once, though-so I decided to replace the items that I ran out of, as I ran out. Yes, it wouldn’t immediately fix the problem, but it would reduce the amount of chemicals that I was absorbing, albeit slowly.
Understand Your Skin
One of the many functions of the skin is, indeed, to be a barrier. It keeps our internal organs and fluids in, and harmful external elements (UV radiation, bacteria) out. The skin can be divided into three distinct parts:
- the epidermis,
- the dermis, and
- the hypodermis.
The epidermis is comprised of five layers of dermal cells, the uppermost layer (the stratum corneum) being our first line of defense against the outside world.
The stratum corneum is a sheath of flattened, dead skin cells surrounded by water-repelling lipids. This explains why our bodies don’t swell up like a sponge every time we take a bath.
How Chemicals Get In
Chemicals found in personal care products can enter our bodies through non-dermal pathways as well. Some of the worst offenders are toxics known as phthalates, which are often found in the ingredient “parfum” or “fragrance.” Phthalates can end up airborne, entering into our system through inhalation, depositing in airways, and being absorbed into the bloodstream through the lungs.
As I did more and more research, I was convinced that my main stream personal care products were part of the problem-a big part.
Start Your Detox
The first item I replaced was my deodorant. Now, I’ve tried a lot of natural deodorants over the years, and I constantly found that they “didn’t work.” And then one day I was researching detox and I came across some research about detoxing your armpits. I figured I had nothing to lose, so I gave it a try. I needed to get healthy. And you now what? It worked! Doing a full armpit detox before I made the switch to Tom’s of Maine® Wicked Cool!™ Deodorant. Free of artificial dyes, fragrances, flavors, and preservatives, Tom’s of Maine products are good for the planet and are Made to Matter® Confession: Tom’s of Maine® Wicked Cool!™ Deodorant is actually a men’s deodorant, but I love how well it works to keep me fresh even after a hard roller derby workout.
Find YOUR “Big Three”
Once I had success with my deodorant switch, it was on. Nothing was safe. The next thing I did was to make a list of just three items that I used daily. Then I immediately replaced them with natural alternatives. Since I’d already handled my deodorant situation, that was taken care of. The next three things that were on the natural chopping block were:
My rationale was that I brush my teeth twice a day. That toothpaste stays in my mouth (and absorbs into my body) for at least two full minutes. But I really, really wanted to keep my teeth white. Thankfully, Tom’s of Maine® Luminous White™ Toothpaste does a great job of that. Hubby never noticed that I made the switch until he ran out of his toothpaste and stole mine. Now we keep two tubes in the bathroom. I started buying soap at the farmer’s market and using coconut or olive oil to moisturize just about everything (even my face!). I finally found a facial moisturizer that I love, but it took time (and a lot of label reading) to figure out what didn’t contain those scary chemicals.
When you’re working on your “big three” think hard about the items that you apply daily; usually to a large part of your body, and replace those items. Once you’ve found something you like, move on to the next thing.
Natural Products Are Fun (And They Work!)
Conventional personal care is no longer the only fun, convenient, option. We don’t have to rush to Sephora or the nearest drugstore to get our hands on chemical-laden “wonder” products. Natural items are becoming easier to find, and they’re super convenient. Plus, you don’t have to go to a specialty store. I found my favorite products at my local Target, and with Tom’s of Maine®, there’s something for everyone in your family – Wicked Cool!™ Deodorants, Luminous White™ Toothpaste, and Men’s Naturally Dry North Woods™ Antiperspirant. Tom’s of Maine® products are free of artificial dyes, fragrances, flavors and preservatives, which means that Tom’s of Maine products are good for the planet and are Made to Matter®. This season, they’re also handpicked by Target, which means I can stock up.
What are your “BIG THREE” products?