For me, health is obviously a lot about the food you eat, the superfoods and suppliants you can take to support your body, but also about what you are putting on your skin, in your hair and around your home.
|Sophia - the clean green beauty machine|
You would be amazed how absorbent your skin is and the effect this can have on your health. There have been links to the aluminum in deodorant and breast cancer, skin sensitivities and the use of sodium laurel sulfate in shower gel and shampoo (a chemical also used for cleaning car engines!) and the use of paraffin in moisturizers which block your pores, which in turn can cause ache, sleeplessness, excessive sweating and much more.
So here are my top 5 alternative products for keeping those harsh chemicals away from your skin….
Shampoo and Shower Gel
For both my shampoo and shower gel I use products by JASON. Available in most health food stores and online I absolutely love the small of the Apricot shampoo, not only is it free from harmful chemicals it also makes my hair feel clean, soft and shiny. Of the range of shower gels I adore the lavender scent, it’s so relaxing for post –gym showers, or try citrus for a fresh morning wake me up.
I would also recommend shampoos by Faith in Nature, again free from harmful chemicals I particularly like their range of soaps.
I have been on a mission to find aluminum free, propolyne glycol free deodorant that actually works. Deodorants will often be advertised as ‘natural’ or ‘clean’ but still contain ‘potassium alum’ or other lymph clogging chemicals. One of the best I’ve found is by American company ‘Honestly pHresh’ – available in some health food stores and from www.healthmonthly.co.uk it comes in a range of fragrances for women and men. If you have found a good deodorant I’d love to hear from you, leave me a message or Tweet me :)
Most of the major toothpaste manufacturers add fluoride to toothpaste, this can cause a number of health issues including stomach ailments, rashes and acute toxicity. So much so in fact, that all toothpaste brands in the US that use fluoride have had to add a poison warning to every tube.
My favourite fluoride -free toothpaste is AloeDent, it’s super minty, leaves my teeth feeling clean and is available in loads of shops including Waitrose.
Second to that I also like Kingfisher, best known for its fennel flavor toothpaste (you will either love or hate it), Kingfisher also does mint, bicarb, aloe and strawberry for children. Plus Kingfisher prides itself on being cruelty-free and ethical, Yay!
Having a great moisturizer is important to many people, from experience I know I rely on it to keep my skin soft, especially at the change of seasons when I tend to get dry skin.
It’s certainly hard to find a perfect brand but there are a lot of companies paving the way for organic, clean and green skincare.
The price can vary hugely, for super luxury I love Dr Hauschka, the quality of their products is fantastic. My mid-range favourites include Neal's Yard, Avalon Organics, and Aromatika. All of which are available online or in stores around the country.
Alternatively, my secret for great skin is Coconut oil, I put it on my face every night before bed and when I need a moisture injection. You can buy a jar from Detox Trading for only £6.95 and it lasts ages.
Finally, it’s always worth buying from a cruelty-free brand, look for the ‘Leaping Bunny’ symbol, check the website or if in doubt email the company to ask.
I realise this is a rather personal matter but I think this is another important health issue that tons of women may not be aware of.
Many conventional tampons are made of rayon, are bleached for whiteness, contain chlorine and come with a plastic applicator. Not only are these contributing to waste levels, there have also been links to reproductive issues from these tampons.
I am on board for sure that sanitary products should be tax-free, after all it’s not a choice for women, but I do also think it’s worth spending the extra money on organic-cotton, biodegradable, chlorine and plastic free tampons.
Why not try Natracare, they have a great range of products available online or in health food shops. They have a great ethos and have been producing eco-friendly, body-friendly sanitary care for many years.
I also just want to give a shout out to two fab websites that you can get some wonderful clean, green beauty products. Love Lula is one of my absolutes faves, such a great range of brands with so many cosmetics that will benefit your health and the planet.
Along with that I also love Being Content Health and Wellbeing, again with fab products you can find them both online and in their London store.
Sophia Harvey is one one of the owners of the successful online health food retailer Detox Trading, and is currently studying to become a natropathic nutritionist with the Nutritional Healing Foundation. Complementary therapy has been in the Harvey family for four generations, Sophia's great grandfather being one of the UK's first Osteopaths.