What Are You Putting On Your Skin? (DIY Skin Care Products)

I thought today’s blog post would take a slightly different direction. The majority of my posts are about food and the psychology of eating. Today I wanted to write about food for your skin. Skin is our largest organ and readily absorbs many of the substances it touches. Skin is also part of our body’s early detection system so when something is not quite right your skin may let you know.

The majority of skin care products available today contain chemicals that are hormone disruptors.  Popular problematic ingredients are phthalates, parabens, fragrance, petrolatum and other petrochemicals. If you would like more information on chemicals you should avoid when purchasing body care products, visit http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/. This website is fantastic and also includes a database so you can look up the products you are currently using and see how they are rated.

I’ve slowly been switching over to personal care products that don’t contain problematic chemicals. You really have to read the ingredient lists and not rely on the flashy claims on the front of the packaging. Yes, the cleaner products are likely to cost more than what’s on sale at your local drugstore or supermarket. When I feel like splurging I will pick up some products from Rocky Mountain Soap Company  made in Canmore or the Creamery which are customized and mixed right in front of you in Calgary.

These products are wonderful but pricey so I decided that I would try to make some skin care products in my kitchen. I decided to start with body lotion since I seem to go through it so quickly from Calgary’s incredibly dry air. Wellnessmama.com inspired me with this simple recipe. I modified it slightly to fit my needs and purchased the ingredients at Community Natural Foods. I used almond oil, coconut oil, bees wax and mango seed butter. It’s much more economical to order the raw ingredients in large quantities on-line but I wasn’t sure how my experiment would go so I decided to start small.

The most surprising part of this project was how easy it was to melt everything in a mason jar on the stove and pour it into some sterilized class jars I already had. There was virtually no clean up and I was able to customize the lotion with essential oils for my needs. I used baby-friendly chamomile and lavender for their soothing properties. I have to admit I’ve always been intimidated by the concept of making my own body care products. Honestly, it’s really simple, fast and rewarding.

So how did the body lotion turn out? The lotion came out smooth and really rich. At first I found it too greasy for summer but I think I was putting too much on. A little really goes a long way especially in the summer. I also use this lotion on my baby’s dry skin and as a diaper cream. It’s cloth diaper safe so that’s a bonus.

cream, essential oils, lavender, lotion, personal care, skin

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