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The Skinny on Your Skin, Part 1

We all know the expression about having ‘skin in the game,’ right? Well, the next time you have a conversation with someone about nutrition and the things we put into our bodies, think about that expression. It turns out that what we put on our body is just as important as what we put in it.

Your skin is the largest organ you have. And yes, it’s an organ. Because it’s porous, it acts like a sponge, soaking up anything that contacts it. In fact, according to a study published in the American Journal of Public Health, 64% of contaminants (in general) are absorbed through the skin.

The study also stated that factors like hydration level and temperature greatly influence the absorption. What’s that mean, in normal-speak? It means that places on your body that are naturally warmer or moister, like your underarms, will absorb way more than the stated 64%. Think about the ingredients in your deodorant. Can you pronounce them? ‘Nuff said.

So many people are walking around in a state of delusion – trusting their very lives to the companies that put products on the shelves in pretty packages, with pretty fonts and colors and nice-sounding language. We assume it’s safe because it’s in the store. We think it can’t possibly be toxic – after all, it’s meant to be applied to our bodies, right?

Those deadly chemicals, preservatives and toxins are easily disguised with fragrances. Start paying attention to the ingredients, and not the package or the big brand name. A good rule of thumb to use is this: if you can’t pronounce it, put it back on the shelf – not on your body. How good it smells or how great it tastes is NOT an indicator that it’s good for you.

The same goes for the foods we eat. We naturally assume certain things because it’s in the food section, in the grocery store, and it has a big company’s name on the box. I’m not saying that it’s bad because it’s made by a major brand. Not at all. The point I want to get across is that YOU must be responsible for yourself by reading the label. Know what’s in it before you take it home.

One other point – just because a product has mostly good ingredients doesn’t make it good. Think about it this way: What if you were served a meal with organic vegetables, fresh this and non-GMO that, and the server told you that it only had a little arsenic or cyanide? Would you reason that it probably wouldn’t hurt you? After all, it’s mostly good, right?

Understand this: it’s the long-term, continual exposure or consumption that is the biggest danger. You have to make long-term, continual good choices if you want to keep your skin in the game.

 

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What is a Hydrosol?

Hydrosols are also known as essential waters, herbal waters, hydrolates and other names. They are herbal distillates. That means they are a co-product created in the steam distillation process of making Essential Oils.
Hydrosols contain all of the ‘phytochemicals,’ or organic compounds, of the original plant or herb being distilled. Because hydrosols actually contain tiny particles of the essential oil and other components found in the herb, they may be considered a pre-diluted version of the Essential Oil.
Unlike pure Essential Oils, which should be diluted with a ‘carrier’ oil before being applied to the skin, hydrosols are much gentler and may generally be used directly on the skin with no dilution.
Hydrosols are coming into popular use as an alternative to plain water in fragrances, skin toners, cosmetics and lotions. Because of the growing concern about harsh chemical additives and stabilizers being absorbed through the skin with commercial products, many people are switching to hydrosol-based products.
They may be misted directly on the skin or added to bath water as a natural skin toner, or used as a natural fragrance.