Not Just a Pretty Face: Take a Stand for a Healthier Future

  • Posted on
  • By Stephanie Brown
Not Just a Pretty Face: Take a Stand for a Healthier Future

Toxic Chemicals linked to cancer, birth defects and learning disabilities do not belong in products we smear on our bodies.


I hope we are on the same page so far…


I read this amazing book a few years back and it just blew the roof off of the whole thing.


Just another wild whistle blower for us North Americans, only now we have much greater control over how much power we give to the industry that is invading our bodies and those of the ones we love.


We have knowledge. We have a choice.


Having recently reread the book I am freshly furious about what has been happening on the more commercial side of the industry of cosmetics and personal care products. I have always innately known to remain pure and connected with the plant power that will provide most everything we need, but until Stacey Malkan organized a vast amount of information and put it together in a cohesive manner fit for any reader, I had not known the extent of the deception and treachery that exists on the political side of how this industry is governed, regulated and policed.


What are they up to, you ask?


Simply put they are designing chemicals for functionality and efficiency and NOT health and safety; overseen by dermatologists whose decisions are almost always driven by considerations of skin irritation or sensitivity. In short: They work fine. Today. And who cares if they are harmful in other ways? Or that they cause bigger problems down the road? So what happens if they add phalates (used to hold color and fragrances in a product- found everywhere) and this particular chemical doesn’t burn the skin or cause a rash?


Well, amongst other issues, that phalate that is deemed safe for the skin can damage DNA in the sperm, a condition that can lead to infertility or miscarriage (two stats unfortunately on the rise). Wow… who’d have thought our boys would be so affect by the consequences of our skincare, perfume, etc. But here is what one Mom of a group dealing with these repercussions had to say:


“None of our boys looked weird, they weren’t grossly deformed, But they had subtle (physical) differences”


WHY?? Is this happening?!


Because they can and because it’s cheaper.


Could they really be that heartless? We can put a little bit of that on pure ignorance.


But there is an old way of thinking that believes that dangerous materials are OK in low doses. Unfortunately the people thinking this way are still often in charge. They neglect the fact that low levels add up. And layering exposure by using multiple products only makes this worse. Plus, pound for pound children absorb more chemicals into their bodies, and the threat gets worse every year. We try to make ourselves feel safe with the argument that people are living longer, but we are ignoring the fact that we are dealing with so many more illnesses along the way.


To be real it’s not all about breast cancer, but I don’t think I need to shed light on how much impact breast cancer has had on our families and communities. Many of us have had to face the reality of this horror in some way or another and many of us have been angered to discover how the products we have come to trust were connected. Reading this book will help connect those dots and illustrate how serious a problem we are dealing with.


Now here’s a shocker: major loop holes have been found in the federal law. As a matter of fact, law doesn’t seem to apply to these major manufacturers and corporations. They actually get to police themselves.


It’s true!


They provide all of the testing (for the few products that make it to testing for health and safety) and the warnings provided are just a suggestion at best. Did you know there are ingredients listed in baby products that are considered ‘not suitable for application to the skin’? And were ‘lucky’ enough to know about them, check out this fun fact:


“July 10, 2002- New products tests find UNLABELED toxins in many best selling cosmetics”


Cover Girl, Pantene, Secret, Eternity, Suave, Clairol, L’Oreal and Revlon…


When it comes down to it, how much proof do we need?! Much better alternative are available!!


The truth is, ccustomers ARE concerned but the advantage goes to those who can spend the most $$ convincing you that they are pure. Beware the global trend of ‘green-washing’. This is when a company markets themselves as green when in fact THEY-ARE-NOT. It’s very frustrating.


As you reach the conclusion to Not Just A Pretty Face, you are faced with the question:


Can we change this fast enough?


The power of purchase is the power to create change. This power is very much in the hands of women, as they purchase for themselves, their spouses and their families.


Remember how furious I claimed to be at the beginning of all this?


It ignites a promising fire, and I will not stand complacently by. I’m asking you to do the same.


“Be the change you wish to see in this world” -Gandhi


I am not alone. More people are taking a stand. We are seeing high school students protesting against these largely male oriented environmental organizations; Mothers, Daughters and Sisters are taking the fight to government. The information is out there. Better options are out there. Take a stand with us! Join us! This camaraderie and unity gives us the power to make change.