Fear not! Or: Is my face cream really that bad?

Who among us doesn’t wish to do the right thing by our bodies and by our planet?

But each week, it seems we’re delivered yet another news flash that we’re being poisoned by our products.  And that’s just scary.  Especially since we’d need quite a lot of pocket change to buy 100% organic for every little thing.  We believe none of us should feel we’re jumping out the top floor window—or recklessly toxifying the planet--just because we’re not able to buy all that’s recommended.  So here we offer the top 5 things you can do to reduce your chemical exposure in cosmetics--Most of these tips will actually save you money too!

Choose an all natural or certified organic lip balm as an alternative to lipstick. While most headlines are focused on lead in lipstick, the truth is you should be more concerned about base ingredients in lipstick than lead in lipstick.  In fact, lead from lipstick pigments contribute less to your lifetime exposure than bottled water does. Also, keep in mind, lipsticks marketed as "long lasting" typically are solvent-based (vs water-based) and may contain more synthetic and petrochemicals than conventional formulas.

Opt for products that are free of harmful synthetic preservatives, such as Quaternium-15.  In addition, look for preservative-free or self-preserving products, such as certified organic castile soap or all natural bar soap instead of liquid soap.  There’s more than one way to stay clean and healthy!

Choose products that are fragrance-free, or use only pure essential oils for fragrance. Essential oils are powerful natural substances which not only have aromatherapeutic effects, but can also be effective preservatives as well as potent actives in skincare.  Synthetic fragrances, on the other hand, typically contain hundreds of chemicals with no effect other than to impart aroma to products.  Why not breathe in only those fragrances that feed your well-being?

Skip the nail polish and artificial nails and use certified organic oils instead. Buff your nails, then massage in your favorite certified organic or natural oil for shine and moisture. Nail polish and nail polish remover can contain very toxic ingredients, including dibutyl phthalate, toluene and formaldehyde –chemicals you and especially your young daughters should limit exposure to!

Go longer in between hair color services and lighten up! No matter what the brand, permanent hair color uses the same bad dyes.  Darker shades have significantly more dye, so try a shade or two lighter!

Nail Polish 101: The truth about natural, nontoxic nail polishes.

Beauty Myth: Alcohol dries out and damages your hair and skin.