This blog chronicles my life as I try to balance healthy lifestyle habits with my husband's penchant for pizza rolls and my daughter's desire to watch iCarly 8 hours a day. It contains a mostly humorous, kind, and somewhat spiritual look at everyday life and the people who live it.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Green Tip Tuesday: Getting the Petroleum out of your beauty products

I do love to rant about reducing my dependence upon petroleum products, don't I?  I have good reason though, petroleum, which contains petrolatum, was never intended to be used on the human body and it certainly wasn't supposed to be eaten (lip balms, food dyes) or rubbed onto our feet and hands (ever used Vaseline to cure your really dry skin?  I used to rub it on my feet and then put on socks.)! 

Pure petroleum jelly is pure petrolatum, a known carcinogen

And just like those dangerous parabens, it's chemical markers are showing up in breast cancer tumors.  (As a side note I once saw an excerpt from the Tyra Banks show where she extolled the virtues of Vaseline to keep her breasts firm, she rubbed a known carcinogen right into the lymph nodes in her breasts!)

Chapstick not only contains petrolatum but a healthy dose of saccharin as well.

Luckily there is a safe, readily available alternative: beeswax.  Beeswax which is a natural product of, well, bees, isn't a by-product of crude oil manufacturing.  It doesn't need to be heavily processed to be used, it contains only natural ingredients and there isn't any harm to the bees to harvest the wax so long as the products come from a competent beekeeper like the Burt's Bees company.
Burt's Bees lip balms contain only beeswax and natural oils

I really like the Burt's Bees products and though they are not the only all natural beeswax products available, they are probably the most readily available and cost efficient.  Want to go even more natural?  Rub a drop or two of almond oil directly onto your lips or dry skin.  The naturally occurring vitamin E will heal the skin while the oil protects against drying.  You can even make your own lip balms or lotions by buying beeswax pellets (available at most craft stores, like Michaels) and melting 2tsp. beeswax in a double broiler with 7tsp.  oil like almond oil, safflower oil, or castor oil.  When the mixture is combined remove it from the heat and add 1 tsp. honey and 4-5 drops of peppermint oil for scent and flavoring.  The mixture will begin to harden quickly so put it into a small glass jar, one made for spices would be perfect, and use at your leisure. 

Soft skin, reduced dependence upon petroleum, and not a single carcinogen to be found.

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