So this week, we tackle a big one – the BATHROOM. Yes, we hear the collective groan! Unfortunately, this is the one place in our home that is practically radio-active with yucky-ness and toxic chemicals. The good news is, as usual, we’re here to break it down and make it as painless as possible.
What toxic chemicals are you getting naked with?
Toxic chemicals found in the bathroom are not limited to cleaning products but also those found in our body/skin care products.
From our introductory post, you’ve learned the impact of dangerous chemicals on our health so getting naked with them, breathing it all in, within a confined space is definitely not a good idea!
With your pores wide open when you take that hot shower, it makes it extra easy for the toxins to get absorbed into your skin and bloodstream.
These toxic chemicals also stay in the bathroom long after you’re done cleaning. They do this by latching onto dust particles, settle on surfaces, waiting for you to breathe it all in every time you use the toilet.
The bottom line is, if there’s one place in your home that needs an urgent detox, it’s your bathroom. Follow these 5 easy steps to turn your bathroom into a haven for your body and soul:
1. Switch to natural cleaners
Supermarket bathroom cleaners are loaded with harmful chemicals like ammonia, chlorine and artificial fragrances.
Switch to natural alternatives like Resparkle’s Organic Bathroom and Glass Cleaner. At the risk of sounding biased, it’s one of the few bathroom cleaners around that is 100% chemical free and actually works!
TIP: Because you don’t have to worry about toxic chemicals in Resparkle, you can clean your shower screens while you bathe! Before you shower, spray Resparkle liberally on the glass. When you’re done showering, wipe down the glass with a dry cloth.
This way, you don’t leave the soap scum to settle plus you get 2 tasks done in one go – Clean body AND bath!
2. Switch to safer bath and skin care products
This is one topic we’re very passionate about so that is why we’ve invited Danielle from DnA Elements to provide us with more insight into what to watch out for.
The nasty chemicals included in skincare products sadly only represent a small number of a wide range of legally allowable ingredients. Since the introduction of petroleum ingredients in the mid 1900’s, chemicals have proliferated, and with them their inclusion in skincare products because they are cheap and readily available.
With only limited research having been carried out on many of the chemicals legally allowed to be included in beauty products, the safest option is to always choose organic skincare and cosmetic brands which openly and transparently advertise that they contain only certified organic raw ingredients. This guarantees a minimum of 95% of all ingredients in the product (excluding water and salt) must be sourced from a certified organic supplier and the remaining 5% of non-organic ingredients must come from natural sources (such as natural minerals). In addition, animal testing is prohibited on these products meaning you have purchased not only an organic product, but an ethical one as well!
5 HARSH CHEMICALS TO WATCH FOR IN YOUR EVERYDAY SKIN AND BEAUTY PRODUCTS
by Danielle from DnA Elements
- BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene).
BHA and BHT are both common chemicals used as preservatives in moisturizers and cosmetics. Both chemicals are known to be endocrine disruptors and have been linked to cancer, skin allergies, and liver, thyroid and kidney toxicity.
- Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives.
Look for DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine and quarternium-15. Used in a variety of cosmetics and slowly release small amounts of formaldehyde, which has been linked to cancer.
- “Parfum” (aka fragrance).
Originally included on a label to protect a manufacturer’s trade secret of their fragrance recipe (think ‘Chanel’), it can now legally represent a complex mixture of dozens of potentially toxic chemicals (unbeknown to the consumer).
- PEG compounds.
Used in many cosmetic cream bases. Can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which may cause cancer. Also look out for related chemical propylene glycol and other ingredients with the letters “eth” (e.g., polyethylene glycol).
The term dioxins refers to a group of over 200 compounds with similar chemical structures, meaning you won’t even see this chemical name on the label! It is often contained in antibacterial agents which appear on labels as triclosan, emulsifiers, PEG’s and SLS’s. Some dioxins actually have the ability to modify the genetic mechanism of our cells which can lead to a wide range of health issues including severe acne, miscarriages and birth defects, nervous system disorders, damaged immune system and cancer
3. Keep Calm and Dump the crap
When was the last time you took stock of the collection of half-used moisturizers, old make-up, brushes, bath toys or worse, unwanted bath gift products that smell like pot-pourri from the two dollar shop?
Rather than hold a pity party for dust mites, germs and unnecessary chemicals, dump them! Then buy some nice wicker baskets to neatly store your new batch of chemical free skincare.
You’d be surprised how energizing a good de-clutter feels!
4. Add some greens
No, we’re not asking you to eat your salads in your toilet!
We’re talking plants. Adding lush green plants in the bathroom is not only a natural air-purifier but also good for feng shui.
In feng shui, the bathroom’s strong water element is believed to create negative chi so plants are great at absorbing them and revitalizing the space.
For some ideas on what plants to put in, read our earlier post here.
5. Fresh air not air-fresheners
Invite fresh air in by keeping a window open. This reduces moisture and prevents mould and mildew.
Never, ever, ever use air freshener as they contain dangerous phthalates (linked to breast cancer, birth defects, infertility, asthma and neurodevelopment issues in newborns).
Use essential oils instead! Not only do they smell better, they have therapeutic benefits.
So after all that hard work of spring-cleaning the bathroom, let’s talk reward! This week’s prize is filled to the brim with some of our favorite beauty products.
HOW TO WIN THIS WEEK’S GIVEAWAY?
Our challenge for this week is simple: Ditch a Chemical (or 2 or 10) from your bathroom!
Prize hamper includes:
- 1 x 50g Soothing Moisturiser by DnA Elements
- 1 x 25g Organic Silica Face Mask by DnA Elements
- 1 x 60g deep hydrating Face balm by Metta Skincare
- 1 x “Grunge Buster” Bamboo Grout & Tile Brush by Bamboo Village
- 1 x 500ml Organic Bathroom & Glass Cleaner by Resparkle
2 ways to win this week’s awesome prize:
How to enter:
(1) Subscribe to our blog (link on resparkle.com.au) and repost our week 2’s prize image with hashtag #4weekhomedetox @resparkle to Get ONE chance to win; or
(2) Get TEN bonus chances by sharing a photo of you dumping any chemical product into the rubbish bin and post it on Facebook/IG! Tag 3 friends to take up the dare with you. Hashtag for this 10 x bonus entries is #ditchachemical
There will be no limit to the amount of entries so don’t forget to spread the love
ENTRIES CLOSE ON THE 17TH OF OCTOBER 2014. Only open to Australian residents.
* All entries will have an automatic entry to stand a chance to win the Grand Prize!
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