I have said this numerous times over the last few months as I have been transitioning from using some absolute favourite products to natural products. It has been hard saying good bye to the products I love and know work. You may say- so why change then? And that my dear readers is the big reason for writing this piece. Because why?
Skin absorbs some of what is put on it, even foundation partially. Every moisturiser, every sunscreen, every hair product massaged into the scalp claiming to give you voluptuous curls or more hair growth… it works yes, I am not disagreeing that there are products out there that do exactly what they say on the tin, hell I have purchased them and written about them. BUT, and this is the biggest but of my life that I am finally waking up to… THEY ARE SO BAD FOR YOU.
Now you may stop here and think, this is just one of those ‘blog articles’ telling me how bad things are yarda yarda yarda. It is not. Well, I am going to explain why they are bad, what they are doing and what alternatives you can use. You can’t say fairer than that.
Firstly, I want to tell you about deodorants. This is not where I originally started my transition but I feel it is one of the biggest changes you can make. We use deodorants to sometimes eradicate but ultimately to mask the smell of body odour (bo).
I feel like this was a really hard one for me too. Happy with my deodorant and not wanting to smell- why change? Well, I found a lump under my arm pit and it scared me silly. After a few weeks it went away on its own thank god, but that was the end for me. Not me literally just the use of deodorants. Our armpits absorb EVERYTHING we put on them! You’ll see on super market shelves deodorants that most people use and also a very small section for 0% aluminium too. This is your first warning sign. Companies CAN and DO produce deodorants without aluminium so why put it in there in the first place?
Medical research shows that aluminium from anti perspirants can build up in your body. When you have high levels of aluminium in your body it can lead to Alzheimer’s disease and Breast Cancer. Firstly, I am not saying if you use deodorants you will definitely get cancer. Secondly, did you know men can also get Breast Cancer?
Ultimately, deodorants are not good for you in any way, shape or form.
I looked into various natural deodorant’s and I found one that stuck with me. Completely natural and no ‘transition smelly’ period. I also looked into drawing those chemicals out of my body, which actually speeds up any transition period. By transition period I mean the period in which your body gets used to using natural deodorants over chemical. With some natural deodorants they can leave you smelling a little in this time.
After much research I came across a company called Sweet Bee Organics. The company started off very small selling one product and then the owner was diagnosed with cancer. She vowed to cure it partly naturally and if she beat it expand the company. And she did. The company sell various natural products and one of them is their Pure Pits Organic Armpit Detox.
‘The trouble with switching to a natural deodorant after using an aluminium based one for so many years, is that the natural one just doesn’t seem to work. This is because your body is used to metabolising aluminium, causing you to smell and your lymph nodes are still carrying the harmful aluminium. This is where a detox is needed. It will help rid that delicate area of the toxins and help in the transition to a better alternative.’
The natural product has a base of activated charcoal, bentonite clay and ground organic calendula. All these ingredients draw out the chemicals and calm the skin. The charcoal is known for being able to find certain poisons and toxins and flush them from your body meaning that you’ll get a general detoxification too.
All you need is one tablespoon of Pure Pits and mix with either 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar (recommended) or water to make the consistency of Greek yoghurt. Apply to under arm and wait 15-20 minutes. Now the jar says wipe with a warm cloth, but, I found the as soon as I wiped the charcoal had solidified and it crumbled on the floor. Now that is not where you want charcoal to be, especially if you have light coloured carpets- TAKE THIS AS YOUR WARNING! Get in the shower and wipe it off under the warmth of the water and so the mess goes straight down the plug! Use every day for a week.
Now, whilst you are using the detox in the evening I used my natural deodorant in the mornings, like you would normal deodorant, and found again to transition and no smell. I was covered for the entire day including when I did yoga and workouts!!! Obviously with the workouts there was a little smell but, actually, you’ll get that with normal deodorant too.
So, onto deodorants. I was being really picky and looking at tonnes of reviews as I trawled the internet for something good.
Then, I found EarthBits. A small company bought to life by a couple and their child in England. EarthBits offer quite a few different deodorants but I was drawn to their natural, plastic free Orange and Patchouli deodorant. The deodorant is truly eco-friendly biodegradable paperboard push-up tube (winner winner)! The deodorant contains arrowroot powder, coconut oil, patchouli and orange. These all contain antibacterial, absorbent, soothing and hydrating properties.
The deodorant doesn’t have a transition and you are covered from day 1 but for me, but combining this and the Pure Pits makes the most sense to get rid of it all and start from scratch.
I found this product to really tick all the boxes for me. There hasn’t been one day where I’ve been a bit whiffy. I am currently 19 days in too. At a price of £6.45 it is a little more than usual deodorant but by how much I am using I can imagine this will last me a while.
Whilst browsing EarthBits I can across Shampoo Bars. Shampoo bars have never really clicked with me and the one or two I have tried in the past has left me with straw hair or one that gives me greasy hair after just a few hours. So I hadn’t planned to buy it or had much rhyme or reason too at first, however, I thought if I’m going to go down this route of drawing these chemicals out of my body then there wouldn’t be much point if I was going to continue to put it onto my scalp. I thought I would give it a go. I saw that they did a 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner bar and with my past experience I thought this was a good place to start. They do 4 different options with their 2 in 1 bars; Normal Hair, Dry Curly Hair, Oily Fine Hair and Itchy Scalp. I didn’t feel like I needed anything from the bar but I was worried with just going for a normal bar, so I went for itchy scalp in a hope I would stop running my hands through my hair so much or touching my head as weird as that sounds.
I can categorically tell you that this bar just…works!
I was wowed at how much the bar lathered and washed. I use it to wash my hair twice every third day and this seems to work really really well. Clean hair that smells amazing. The bar is £7.50 which is a considerable saving to what I was paying for normal shampoo and conditioner. Not only that, but it comes in completely recyclable packaging which is unbleached so can even be composted.
I found that you must not put it in a dish that allows it to sit in water otherwise, like a bar of soap, it’ll only use it up quicker.
Lastly but not least the last of the changes I have been making (for now) is my use of baby wipes. For years, I have used baby wipes to remove my makeup before I would start my skincare routine. I found that makeup remover creams etc clogged my pores and cloths just didn’t help.
It was only when, one day, I was scrolling through Instagram when an advert was in my newsfeed for Eco Garden‘s Reusable Bamboo Cotton Cleansing Pad Set.
Coming complete with 12 reusable pads, a cotton laundry bag and the elegant bamboo holder It was everything I needed that I hadn’t realised I had been looking for.
‘By using our sustainable bamboo cotton pads as an alternative to disposable make-up removal wipes or single use pads, we can save 11,000,000,000 plastic pollutants entering our marine environments & local waterways every year in the UK alone.’
I had to make the change.
The cotton pads are made from 100% bamboo cotton which makes them really soft on the skin and very durable when washing. There are two different sides to the pad, one super smooth and one slightly textured to offer an exfoliation pad too. The pads are washed at 40 degrees and I have found, when washing, the stains lift very easily and they are like as good as new when done.
For £18.99 the Reusable Bamboo Cotton Cleansing Pad Set is a small investment that is worth every single penny.
Knowing my body is having less chemicals enter it makes me feel definitely better about my future health. These small little changes anyone can do and at a very reasonable manageable cost.
Im excited to see what journey this transition takes me on.