Beauty Isn't Only Skin Deep With Fruit and Flower Power

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Green tea flavored Guava Cactus Mask and detoxifying Cranberry Mud Mask. Photo by Neeta Lind
Lead on my lips and mercury on my eyelashes, carcinogenic and endocrine disruptive creams on my skin. We have a long history of doing dangerous things in the name of beauty. The Egyptians applied copper for skin tone, Romans used chalk. In the Middle Ages, Europeans covered faces with arsenic-laced powder and leaches to whiten skin. The EU has banned 1,110-plus ingredients in cosmetics, compared to only 10 in the US. With one-third of the products on shelves containing an ingredient linked to cancer, why do "beauty" companies continue to slather our faces and bodies with chemicals in the name of healthy skin? MyChelle Dermaceuticals has a clue.
MyChelle creates nontoxic safe skin care with natural ingredients they believe are more effective than chemicals. They provide a glossary of the beneficial properties of natural ingredients in their line, alternatives like coconut, a preservative. So why do companies persist in using toxic substances that irritate the skin and cause reproductive and neurological disruption? It's cheaper, says MyChelle.

As one of 600 companies that signed the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, this body and cosmetic collection is vegan-friendly and doesn't test on animals. There are no phthalates, parabens or artificial fragrance. It specializes in bioactive ingredients that have a "therapeutic effect on living tissue," like magnolia which is an anti-inflammatory and pumpkin which acts as an anti-oxidant.

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Soap to Nuts

Honeydew facial cleanser, guava and cactus mask, apple and raspberry peels. Ingredients with healing properties, that naturally exfoliate and are rich in nutrients, such as cranberry, grapefruit, pineapple, and fruity enzyme scrubs to encourage the skin's natural regeneration, as well as molasses, nut butters, turmeric, foxglove, daisy extract, lavender, and camellia seed oil.

What you won't find are toxins commonly found in conventional beauty "care" like polybuten (an airplane adhesive) dioxins, petrochemicals, formaldehyde, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (detergents used in car washes and garage floor cleaners) and Propylene Glycol or Butylene Glycol (plastics the EPA considers so toxic it requires protective gloves, goggles and disposal by burying).

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Apples and Oranges

Its deep repair creams contain oil of rapeseed (reduces toxin accumulation, antiseptic, reduces swelling) black currant, rose hips, jojoba, loveage, goji berry, and geranium flowers. What a toss-up: herbs, flowers and food like ginger extract which improves cellular immunity -- or hazardous chemicals that penetrate the skin?

If you want to know the score of your personal care regime and reduce exposures to cosmetics that pose health risks, check out the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. (Environmental Working Group is a member) The website lists 55,413 products and brands, and 9,003 ingredients in their database, from makeup to sunscreens.

More on beauty products:
We Can't See Them, But EU Wants to Better Regulate Nanoparticles in Sunblock, Lipstick and Creams
"The Toxic 12" Beauty Ingredients
Lipstick, Shampoo, Nail Polish - How Toxic is OK?

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