I quit wearing make-up today. Whaat? (I know, yikes.) I realize it’s crazy, but here’s what’s crazier. According to my nonfiction book of the month, The Virtuous Consumer by Leslie Garrett, “89 percent of cosmetics contain one or more untested ingredients.” Excuse me?
A little trip through cyberspace led me to this startling discovery: of the four products I use on a daily basis, three scored a risk factor of 5 or 6 on a scale where 1 is safest and 10 is most risky. We’re talking about ingredients that build up in the body over time (“persistence and bioaccumulation,” they call it) and are linked, or potentially linked, to everything from cancer to birth defects.
As scary as that is, Garrett does a great job of coming across as thoughtful and reasonable, not media-hyped or Gaia-crazed. She’s an enlightened woman seeking to enlighten the rest of us. After hearing her out, I decided that no matter how big my next zit is, it can’t be worse than cancer. Or harming my endocrine system–because, as women, I’m pretty sure all of us already know we don’t need to mess with our hormones if we can avoid it.
Even if all this linkage to health issues is speculative, unsound, or worse, I decided I’m just not willing to take that risk for vanity. Here’s what I had in my make-up bag…yesterday.
Only the lip gloss remains. The rest of it lies in the bathroom trash. I’ll admit I’m a little sad about it. A little scared too. What if I wake up looking (or just feeling) like crap? It happens; let’s be honest! Well…I’ll cross that bridge. Bare-faced.
I wouldn’t mind discovering a wholesome brand and going back to basic make-up. Even a bit of blush can do wonders for my tired face some days. But until I’m sure I’m not soaking up nasties through my skin, I’ll try to be patient.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear of any homemade cosmetics you’ve tried. I’ve found recipes for deodorant, lotion, and lip balm. For several months now I’ve been using the oil cleansing method for my evening face wash. I read about it in Tsh Oxenreider’s book Organized Simplicity, but obviously you’re on an internet-accessible device of some kind right now, so I refer you to her blog.
I use extra virgin olive oil and castor oil. I already had the glass bottle from a couple years ago when Hubby and I brewed homemade vanilla extract for Christmas presents. (This bottle had never been used.)
I used about 1/3 olive oil…
…and topped off with castor oil.
From the beginning I was satisfied with the cleansing effect; it was only the moisture issue I was unsure of. My skin is always especially dry in the winter, and I expected this moisture-rich mix to immediately solve that problem. It didn’t. I backed off the heat in my rinse cloth–I think I was going too hot at first–and now I follow this cleanse with a moisturizer. I currently use Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture for Combination Skin (Skin Deep score = 3), and for now I’m hanging onto it. But if you have any better ideas, I’m all ears!