Monday, June 22, 2009

Greenify Your Skin- Body Edition

Skin is your largest organ. It is extremely important to your health because it keeps nasty stuff out of your body, keeps good stuff (like water) in, helps regulate temperature, and does a whole host of other important things. Not to mention, it's the first thing people see when they look at you. So when I was deciding which parts of my "routine" to greenify first, it made sense to really look into my skincare. I want to take care of my skin using natural products that will perform just as well as, if not better than, the ones in the drugstore without breaking the bank. And after a little experimentation, this is my routine so far:

I have to admit that the thing I liked most about Pangea Organics Bar Soaps is that they smell absolutely amazing. I have Italian White Sage, Geranium, & Yarrow; Pyrenees Lavender with Damiana Tea; and Canadian Pine with White Sage. These soaps don't strip my skin like a lot of other bar soaps, they moisturize using natural oils, and the scents are all-natural. The coolest part about them is that not only are they made of minimal packaging, but the box it comes in has seeds imbedded in it and can be planted. Total gimmick, but a fun idea.

The bars are about $7, so not the cheapest, but I found mine for 50% off at World Market and stocked up, and a bar will last you for awhile.

I prefer bar soap to body wash because it cuts down on packaging. However, if you really don't like bar soap, I found lots of natural body washes too. Hugo Naturals Shower Gels come highly recommended by just about everyone I asked. They use mostly natural ingredients and contain no SLS, but they wash thoroughly without stripping. Not to mention, they come in delicious-sounding scents like Sweet Orange & Lemon and Shea Butter & Vanilla. Plus they're not terribly expensive ($8-9 for a big bottle) and easy to find at places like Whole Foods and online.
When it comes to moisturizer, I'm pretty low-maintenance. I want something light that I can slap on after a shower, and that won't irritate my skin or smell like butt. Nature's Gate moisturizers do the trick for me. They're inexpensive (about $9 for a huge 18-oz bottle) and easy to find, made with mostly natural ingredients, and the scents are light. I like the Pomegranate Sunflower one for its antioxidant properties but they have a whole host of other lotions for everthing from aging to very dry skin. There is also a fragrance-free line if you're sensitive.
When it comes to body scrubs, I prefer to make my own. Take olive oil (or anything oily) and add brown sugar or oatmeal and voila, you have a scrub. It's so easy I don't really see the point in buying one from the store. If I did decide to purchase a scrub, however, I might splurge on 100% Pure's body scrubs. They come highly recommended for being effective at smoothing without irritating sensitive skin, plus the ingredients are all-natural and mostly organic. Plus there's a huge variety, from Pomegranate to Fuji Apple to Sugared Lemon Peel (and lots more). They're not cheap (around $22 per scrub) but I think they'd be a fun treat for when you don't want to make your own.
Sunburn happens. This weekend I went to a parade covered in SPF 60 and still somehow came back with a nasty sunburn on my upper back. Jason's 98% Aloe Vera Gel has been my lifesaver. Aloe Vera is useful post-sun exposure, as well as for general skin irritation, and it makes a great light moisturizer if you have oily, acne-prone skin like me. And like all the others, it's inexpensive and easy to find in most natural grocers and some drug stores.

Tell me what you think of my new skin routine, and keep an eye out for the facial skin edition, coming just as soon as I get done testing products! :)

PS: You can check out the rest of the Greenify posts here.

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  1. Nice Blog! I like your regimen and totally agree that natural is better!!! :)

  2. At our house, we've tried to go green on all of our skincare products. We use the SkinDeep database which gives you an analysis of the ingredients in products and flags potentially harmful ones so you know you're getting something that is green and safe, and not just some slick advertising. They database also provides links to stores if you decide to buy something. It makes the whole process a lot easier!

    Thanks for the great post.