I sure hope everyone is enjoying the New Year!
With the every New Year comes resolutions. We want to aspire to take better care of ourselves, do better unto others, and just all around want for a better life in this crazy world. It’s a good thing!
Many will argue that part of wanting to take care of yourself is using less chemicals in your life. Chemicals, boo! Natural, yay!
But is it really that easy…?
It is easy to find argument for either side – need for chemicals vs all natural. Whatever your belief, seek information and research both sides. A few articles you searched in your favor is not research! Open your mind and see what the other side has to say, then compare.
I have attached a great website on a substance found all over the globe that has information, though technically correct, is twisted to make anyone who would have contact with it run in fear for their life. It is a great experience in seeing just what some creative wording can do to sway your mind to their way of thinking. Check it out here. Once you realize what they are talking about, you will do an epic “facepalm”, then begins the realization that we are fooled everyday by the wizardry of the pen.
So, while reading this, many may think, “So I guess you are pro chemical?”. No. I never said that. I do, however, understand the need for both in our lives, not just bath and body products, but in everyday living.
For example: When I had my surgery, I needed anesthesia (duh). The medicines they used are not natural, they are synthetically modified from nature or completely chemical bound. If the anesthesiologist came to me with some turmeric and menthol “pain cream” to slather on my arm before they operated, surely, there would be some protest! I have cared for people in the emergency department with snake bites that either caused them to loose a limb, or worse, their life. Venom is completely natural. I have a personal friend who nearly died of respiratory distress from a fungus that was disrupted in the earth as they were digging nearby to build an apartment complex. In fact, many were affected, some died, some are on aggressive anti-fungal treatment for a minimum of one year to suppress it. Fungus is completely natural as well. Check out Valley Fever here.
On the other hand, excessive chemicals around us cause the same types of issues. I can not tolerate highly fragrant perfumes. I will cough and develop and instant migraine. Recently, I tested a recipe that called for an agent that makes body washes bubble more (people love their bubbles!). My testers have been using my soaps for a few years and when they tried this, they developed a fine rash, their bodies were not longer synthesized to the chemical bubble maker. (and yes, I used it correctly!) It is common knowledge that some of the agents we used in antibacterial products that were designed to keep us safe were draining off into our water supplies and causing issue to the eco system. Here is what the FDA has to say about Triclosan. All worrisome things, in my opinion.
But essential oils are good, right? Yes… and no! It is not secret that Lavender is known to calm the mind, that Chamomile tea soothes the tummy. Peppermint wakens the senses and can also be used for nausea. There are some that are a known irritant (clove, cinnamon, mustard seed, etc) that must be researched and used in the appropriate amounts so you do not harm yourself or someone else. In fact, you should ALWAYS research anything you are blending and using to ensure they are compatible and you don’t end up making some kind of noxious gas, or dare I say, a bomb! Essential oils are a volatile and flammable product and should be stored in amber glass jars or aluminum containers (never plastic) for protection from light. Treat them with love and respect, many plants and flowers sacrificed themselves for your well being! 🙂 While this is not the “know all, end all”, here is a quick and easy guideline for handling of essential oils from Bramble Berry.
Finally, for the love of all that is holy, NEVER EVER ingest essential oils unless you are under the guidance of a homeopathic practitioner. No, I don’t mean those people that sell oils like they are Tupperware. I mean a legit certified practitioner. There is no such thing as grading system in the US that certifies “therapeutic”, “medicinal”, or “aromatherapy” grade essential oil. That is a buzzword generated by marketers to sell oils. I watched in horror as one of these reps insisted on demonstrating taking peppermint essential oil by mouth and began coughing uncontrollably and drooling all over the place. What the heck do I do with something like that? Yea, sure, lemme buy some of that wonderful stuff, not! Please, be safe!
In summary, while I love my beautiful essential oil blends that uplift or calm my mind, natural colorants and micas, and my luxurious natural soaps that moisturize and gently cleans, I also love my bright “nature identical” colorants, cosmetic glitters, and fragrance oils that were derived from natural sources.
With the correct balance in your life, both can be a very beneficial necessity or just a beautiful part of living.
Bubble on, my soapy friends!
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