Your skin is not only your largest organ – it's also the thinnest. Only one-tenth of an inch thick, your skin is highly permeable. It allows whatever you apply to your skin access to your bloodstream and then into your tissues and organs.
That’s why you sometimes hear me say to never put anything on your skin that you wouldn't be willing to eat.
The same goes with toxic and potentially hazardous ingredients in skin care products. Pampering your skin with "beauty" products laced with toxins can be like playing Russian roulette with your health.
Maybe you’ve wondered... why do so many skin care products contain potentially hazardous ingredients anyway?
Simple answer: they're cheap, readily available and easy to dilute.
When it comes to the beauty industry, anything goes and money reigns supreme. Which means that it's caveat emptor – "buyer beware." You need to be the captain of your own ship and know what's in the products you use.
And if you thought the FDA was watching out for you…
Well, let's just dispel that myth right now. The FDA allows the cosmetic industry to police itself, at the expense of your own tax dollars, no less. The list of people trying to protect you is surprisingly small. In fact, it’s almost nonexistent.
Currently, there are approximately more than 10,500 cosmetic and personal care products in the North American market. Of those products, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) estimates that 99 percent of the products contain one or more ingredients that have never been evaluated for safety.
What's In the Products You're Using?
Are any of these toxic or potentially hazardous ingredients in the products you currently use? It's time to check. Go grab your containers of skin care products and check to see if they contain any of these ingredients…
||Heavily used preservatives in the cosmetic industry, these are used in an estimated 13,200 cosmetic and skin care products.
||They have hormone-disrupting qualities that mimic estrogen and could disrupt your body's endocrine system.
|Mineral Oil, Paraffin and Petrolatum
||These petroleum products coat the skin like plastic – clogging pores and creating a build-up of toxins. They can disrupt hormonal activity. When you think about black oil pumped from deep underground, ask yourself why you'd want to put that kind of stuff on your skin.
|Sodium laurel or lauryl sulfate (SLS), also known as sodium laureth sulfate (SLES)
||Found in over 90% of personal care products! They break down your skin's moisture barrier, potentially leading to dry skin. And because they easily penetrate your skin, they can allow other chemicals easy access.
||SLS combined with other chemicals may become a "nitrosamine" – a potent carcinogen.
||Common cosmetic moisturizer and carrier for fragrance oils.
||May cause dermatitis and skin irritation.
||Very common in personal care products, this is hidden in ingredients such as PEG, polysorbates, laureth and ethoxylated alcohols.
||These chemicals are often contaminated with high concentrations of highly volatile 1,4-dioxane that's easily absorbed through the skin. Its carcinogenicity was first reported in 1965 and later confirmed in other studies in 1978. Nasal passages are considered extremely vulnerable, making it, in my opinion, a really bad idea to use these things on your face.
Who's Responsible for This Mess?
The cosmetic industry loves using loopholes. Some of the big ones are:
- For Professional Use Only" – This phrase allows cosmetic companies to use potentially harmful ingredients.
- "Hypoallergenic" – Sometimes no actual testing is done to claim that a product is "hypoallergenic," "allergy-free," or "safe for sensitive skin." Neither the FDA nor any other regulating body even checks on companies to prove these claims.
- Harmful Chemicals – Harmful or toxic chemicals may not be listed. It's no shocker that you never see these.
The cosmetics industry is a $50 billion-a-year business (in the U.S. alone). It spends a remarkable $2 billion a year on advertising.
Equally appalling is the amount of chemicals many people place on their skin every year. Women who use makeup daily absorb, on average, five pounds each year.
And others, Unfortunately, those who carefully select organic or gourmet foods to eat still choose skin care products that can do serious damage to their skin.
Now, realize that I'm not suggesting you'd intentionally apply toxins to your skin. You simply may not realize the extent to which many common skin care products contain suspect ingredients with unrecognizable or unpronounceable names.
A number of these potential toxins have estrogen-mimicking effects that can wreak havoc on all your good health intentions.
Besides avoiding these hazards, there are some other steps you can take to create that young-looking skin you really want…
Take Your Own Hippocratic Oath for Skin Care
Many of the visible changes to your skin are caused by external factors that you can at least partially control.
These actions may be the easiest and least expensive things you can do to prevent damage to your skin, gain a more beautiful appearance and build a strong foundation for your proactive natural skin care. Not to mention, creating a buzz about your new looks.
Please be aware that skin damage doesn't always involve pain or immediate visible change and can often go unnoticed for some time. But the cumulative actions you begin taking today can also improve the appearance of your skin slowly over time. So get started today doing these simple things:
Avoid or minimize damage from hot water and chlorine. Although taking baths and showers may seem like it's health-promoting and relaxing, your skin may disagree – especially if you have chlorinated water, which is almost certainly the case (unless your water comes from a well). Chlorine causes oxidative damage. The hotter the water, the more potential for damage – because the rate of chemical reactions increases with temperature.
Try toadjust your water temperature, reduce excessive showers and decrease your soak time in the bath.
- Use gentle and safe skin care products – organic whenever possible. Your skin absorbs it all. Don't compromise your health and the health of your skin by using potential poisons.
- Remove your makeup every evening. It's a really bad idea to flop into bed, leaving makeup – not to mention environmental grime – on your face while you sleep. Take a couple minutes to remove it.
- Sleep on your back. Gravity creates a downward drag on your skin all day. Give your skin a break at night. By sleeping on your back, you reduce the gravitational pull on your face. If you press your face to your pillow, you will likely experience increased puffiness in the morning.
- Don't smoke… for your general health's sake, and for your skin.
- Use sunscreen with safe and effective ingredients, such as Dr. Mercola Broad Spectrum Sunscreen, if you plan to be in the sun for extended periods of time
- Limit exfoliation to two times per week, and use a gentle exfoliator. Exfoliation refreshes your skin's surfaces and brightens your appearance as it removes dead cells from the surface of your skin. But if you exfoliate too often or too aggressively, you risk damaging living cells.
- Apply your skin care products to warm skin in order to help your skin appear healthier. This also maximizes absorption. If your skin is cold, use a warm towel to warm your skin.
- Never pull or rub your skin. Apply your skin care products gently, and lightly tap your products onto your face for a few moments to help your skin absorb them. Rubbing stretches your skin and can promote sagging and wrinkles. (Note: This principle includes leaning your face on your hand while sitting at a desk, which also stretches your skin.)
Don't expect overnight changes. Even if you start doing everything right today, don't be discouraged with seeming lack of progress tomorrow.
It may take a month or even two to three months to notice changes. Plus, it's quite possible that others will notice changes in your skin's appearance before you do. Remember, it took years to get where you are today, so show patience when expecting changes and improvements.
Now that you're taking these practical steps as well as choosing not to use dangerous and damaging products on your skin, let's explore your skin care alternatives – organic food products from nature's storehouse.
Nature's Skin Care – For Outer Beauty That Looks and Feels Healthy
It's hardly a secret that plant foods nourish your body. For years, I've heartily encouraged you to eat plenty of raw, uncooked foods directly from nature for your best health and well-being.
Applying skin care products that are derived from these foods is a smart and natural way to make your skin appear both healthy and beautiful… to make your face feel and look as vibrant, radiant and flawless as your healthy body does.
My USDA Certified Organic Skin Care line uses organic ingredients straight from nature's storehouse to promote both your natural beauty and a youthful-looking appearance. After all, why strive to make large health improvements in your life, only to compromise them when you cleanse your skin?
Now you have a smart alternative available that does everything you want it to… promote healthy-looking skin with vital phytonutrients and top-quality ingredients.
Top-quality ingredients from around the world – like acai juice, watercress and cucumber extracts, green tea, sea buckthorn oil and more.
First, let me introduce my Organic Skin Care line upand these quick daily steps for a youthful-looking complexion.
- Daily Step 1. Organic Clarifying Facial Cleanser – Gently cleanse and refresh twice daily
- Daily Step 2. Organic Restorative Facial Serum – Apply once daily preferably in the evening
- Daily Step 3. Organic Eye & Lines Treatment – Apply twice daily, once in the morning and once in the evening
- Twice weekly. Organic Sugar Exfoliator– Apply this refining facial scrub twice weekly after cleansing your face.
Because all these products are USDA Certified Organic, they don’t contain petroleum-based or potentially hazardous ingredients like what’s found in so many other skin care products on the market.
Why 'Organic' Ingredients?
It's important to use only ingredients that promote your healthy appearance without doing any potential harm whenever possible.
You eat organic foods to avoid many of the chemicals in commercial foods. Now, you can do the same for your skin. This is important because what you apply to your skin invariably winds up in your bloodstream.
"Certified Organic" means agricultural products are grown and processed per the USDA's national organic standards… then certified by USDA-accredited state and private certification organizations.
There is a specific process – and a price tag – to becoming certified.
Set standards must be met and extensive paperwork filed to verify that those standards are met. Certifying agents then review applications for certification eligibility.
Qualified inspectors conduct annual onsite inspections of organic operations, observing their production and processing practices to see if they're in compliance with organic standards…
But in general, your product ingredients are the pre-eminent issue. Do they qualify as food? Are they organic and free of potentially harmful pesticides?
We use ingredients that the USDA permits in its certified organic food – using the same standards for these items as for those items that are intended specifically for human consumption. And we proudly list every ingredient in our products,so you can examine them for yourself.
Try Our Exclusive Organic Skin Care Products Today for a More Vibrant-Looking You
Our exclusive skin care products utilize organic botanicals from around the world to provide support for your skin's fresh and youthful appearance.
They do all that without any added potentially damaging petrochemicals, dyes, soy, gluten, GMOs, artificial fragrances, parabens, phthalates and other estrogen-mimicking ingredients. Plus, we never test on animals.
Check out our distinctive products, and discover what they can do for you…
- Organic Clarifying Facial Cleanser with cucumber,watercress and other botanicals to gently cleanse, hydrate and nourish your skin without irritating or drying it out. Plus, it doesn’t leave any oily residue!
- Organic Sugar Exfoliator softly removes the outer layer of dry or flaking skin, leaving your face smooth and radiant – and using all organic ingredients that you already know and trust. Ingredients include organic sugar, olive oil, shea butter, jojoba oil, cucumber extract and the pleasant invigorating scent of sweet orange oil.
- Organic Restorative Facial Serum offers an impressive critical application of deeply nourishing botanical oils and extracts for a youthful, vibrant-looking your appearance. It's brimming with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and much more… to restore, firm and hydrate your skin. Regular use will help improve your skin's texture as it nourishes your cells.
- Organic Eye & Lines Treatment is designed specifically for delicate tissues around your eyes and lips and provides powerful antioxidants and the daily nourishment of deeply penetrating moisturizers to help rejuvenate and renew the appearance of your skin. This luxuriously rich and non-greasy formula consists of nourishing green tea, chamomile and five other botanicals, plus vitamin E from sunflower oil to help firm and plump delicate tissues around your eyes and lips, minimizing the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines, sags, puffiness and dark circles.
Try our entire line of Certified Organic skin care products, and you’ll soon be trading in your tired, worn-out looking complexion for one that’s noticeably fresher and more youthful looking. Order your supply today!
What People Have Said…*
Since using this whole system for the last couple weeks, I see a real difference in the softness of lines and the elasticity of my skin. I have been applying the products on warmed skin and find that really makes a difference. This is a great product and thank you Dr. Mercola.Kathie
I am very happy with this package. It has improved my skin in a very short time, so I can just imagine how great it will look in a couple of months. Thank you.Gloria Gold
I don't think I will ever use another skin care product ever again! This is the best I have ever used. It keeps my skin well hydrated, and goes on so nicely! Love it.Julie
I love this skin care line. They all have a nice scent as well. My skin looks 100% better.Michelle
*These are some of the many positive testimonials we have received. Your results may vary.