Ingredients To Avoid:
Sulfates- Sulfates are found in almost all mainstream shampoos and detergents. Sulfates can cause skin irritation and have been linked to endocrine disruption and neurotoxicity.
Parabens- Parabens are estrogen mimicking chemicals often used as preservatives in the cosmetic industry.
Artificial Dyes And Fragrances- Artificial dyes and fragrances contain a slew of carcinogens and endocrine disruptors. They've been linked to cancer, birth defects, allergies, and nervous system disorders.
Phthalates- Phthalates are endocrine disrupting chemicals often found in personal care products and detergents. They've been linked to breast cancer and early onset puberty in young girls.
PFC's- PFC's or perfluorochemicals are organic pollutants often used in stain resistant clothing, fast food wrappers, and non stick cookware. They've been linked to low birth weight babies, thyroid dysfunction, liver inflammation, and reduced immune function.
Alternatives To Mainstream Products With Toxic Ingredients:
Most mainstream shampoos contain sulfates, parabens, artificial fragrances, and other toxins. Luckily there are quite a few shampoo brands out there with fairly clean ingredients. A few of my favorites are:
-Ology: which can be purchased at most Walgreens stores or on Amazon.
-EO Essentials: they're a small business based out of Marin County California and sell a variety of shampoos, conditioners, soaps, and lotions with safe ingredients.
-Another option is going shampooless. This doesn't mean not showering or washing your hair but washing with just water. Believe it or not, most people's heads will adjust in just a few weeks and your oil production will drop significantly. My kids have never used shampoo a day in their lives and have beautiful clean healthy hair.
Most toothpaste contains sulfates and artificial dyes and fragrances. Toothpaste also contains fluoride, which is a known neurotoxin. Fluoride applied to the teeth in tiny amounts and properly rinsed is unlikely to be problematic but the problem with fluoride is that we are exposed to far too much of it. Many cities add it to their water supply and children are often given vitamins containing fluoride. Consuming fluoride is not a good idea, it can cross the blood brain barrier causing brain damage. It also causes severe damage to our pineal glands.
If you choose to use toothpaste with fluoride, be sure that you and your family thoroughly rinse your mouths after use.
My favorite clean ingredient toothpastes are:
-Earthley's Remineralizing Tooth Powder
Anti-perspirant deodorants contain aluminum, another known neurotoxin. Aluminum in deodorant has also been linked to breast cancer. Deodorants often contain artificial scents and other toxic ingredients. There are a few aluminum free and artificial scent free brands out there including:
-Earthley's Mineral Deodorant
-Kiss My Face's aluminum free deodorant line
Or you can make your own. It's really pretty simple. Wellness Mama has a good recipe here.
The chemicals found in mainstream dryer sheets are considered to be some of the most toxic in the home. And what's worse is the toxic fragrances in dryer sheets are designed to stick to your laundry where they slowly leach chemicals onto you and they're surrounding environment. Instead of dryer sheets, try adding wool dryer balls to your dryer when drying laundry. Or just skip the dryer all together and line dry your laundry.
Lotions often contain ingredients you don't want to lather your skin in. Instead use raw shea or cocoa butter. Or even plain old olive oil works great as a moisturizer without all the unwanted toxins.
Household cleaning products contain a lot of nasty chemicals that I don't feel comfortable using around my home. Instead I make my own cleaning products. You can check out recipes for my most commonly used homemade cleaners here.
Or of you prefer store bought, these companies sell cleaning products with safe ingredients:
Pest Control Sprays
Pest control sprays around your home and on your pets are probably some of the most dangerous chemicals in the home. Instead of using toxic chemicals, consider switching to more natural pest repelling methods like diatomacious earth, herbs, essential oils, or borax. You can find out more about natural pest repellents here.
Also avoid mainstream mosquito repellents containing DEET or other harmful ingredients. Instead try this DIY kid safe bug repellant that my family uses.
Local water supplies often contain many unwanted contaminants, not to mention the fluoride many cities add to their water supply. To find out about potential contaminants in your local water supply, visit the EWG What's In Your Water page. Once you know the contaminants specific to your water supply, you can shop for the water filter that will best suit your needs.
Non stick cookware is often coated with dangerous chemicals like PFC's that can scratch and cook off into your food. Yuck! Instead of using mainstream cookware, use cast iron or stainless steel.
Also be aware of plastic food containers. Many plastics contain endocrine disrupting chemicals that can leach into your food. Instead, use glass storage containers.
The Combined Effect of Methyl- and Ethyl-Paraben on Lifespan and Preadult Development Period of Drosophila melanogaster (Diptera: Drosophilidae)
The estrogenicity of methylparaben and ethylparaben at doses close to the acceptable daily intake in immature Sprague-Dawley rats
volume6, Article number: 25173 (2016)
Joseph M. Braun, Sheela Sathyanarayana, and Russ Hauser
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014,
Philippe Grandjean, MD, DMSc and Richard Clapp, DSc, MPH