Monday, January 07, 2008

Beauty Detoxification

Despite the chill that has descended upon New York with a vengeance, I had a terrific weekend that was the perfect balance of social and me-time activities. I started the weekend off with yoga in my favorite studio in the city, lead by the best yoga teacher ever. He makes everyone laugh while they're gritting through their downward dogs and is constantly talking about this or that pose feeling "yummy" and "delicious." He could easily be the poster child for positivity and I love him. From yoga, I went to Sounds of Brazil, where I met a bunch of my girl friends for salsa dancing. It was such a blast! Although my favorite music to dance to is probably hip-hop, it is so much fun to be twirled around and dipped all over the dance floor. I got spun around like crazy and was laughing the whole time.

Saturday, I went running and lifted weights, did some shopping, and then met a different group of friends at Employees Only, where I had a delicious peach Bellini. Yum. Sunday was probably the best day. I did pilates, went to church, met some new people, practiced my Swedish, did some more shopping, and then did restorative yoga in the evening. Maybe that's why the weekend was so great, because it started and ended with yoga? I was thinking while I was luxuriating in one of the restorative poses - drifting in and out of awareness - that when I do yoga, it makes me feel like I'm on vacation. It's funny, the more I do it, the more I love it. It's kind of like a drug (if drugs were healthy); you end up feeling so blissed out a the end of each session, that your body and mind start to crave it.

Speaking of mind-body awareness and health, I've been having a bit of an awakening around the whole issue of toxic chemicals, and their prevalence in our environment. I've been aware of the toxicity of household cleaners, but I had not thought about the potential toxicity of chemicals in things like cosmetics, shampoos, and other beauty products. If you're curious about what toxins you dabbed around your eyes today or slathered all over your shower-dampened skin, check out this web site: Skin Deep. Just type in one of your beauty products and then check out the detailed rating and the write-up. I was shocked because several of my products from Origins were ranked 7 (out of 10, with 0 being the lowest and least harmful level of chemicals). Personally, I'm trashing all of my normal shampoos and conditioners and going natural; from here on out, I'm only using products with a 0-1 ranking, like California Baby (good for babies and adults). Another of my favorites for natural, organic beauty products is Lush (they also have awesome bath bombs like Sex Bomb and Youki Hi, filled with all natural, organic aphrodisiacs, but that's a different story).

I think I'm also going to trash all of my moisturizers and make-up that doesn't pass the toxicity test, but I think I'm going to have to phase them out gradually. It has not escaped my attention that a lot of my cosmetics have parabens in them, which can mess with your hormones, and my hormones appear to be short-circuiting. Coincidence? Perhaps, but I think it's worth it to explore the topic further and eliminate even potential risks.


Starshine said...

Wow! It sounds like you had a busy weekend. I like the feeling of a balanced social/me-time life.

Good for you for exploring the toxicity stuff. It is so frustrating that we live in such a chemical world. I was venting to Hubs last week that if I eat a fat free yogurt, I might be eliminating the sugar, but that means I'm pumping aspartame into my system, and I have serious doubts about that being good for me.

I would love be eat/use all organics, but it isn't an inexpensive endeavor. I do what I can! I'm about to go to that website and type in some of my Mary Kay products.

Have a great week, BC!

tara said...

Listen, you don't have a condition called alopecia areata. Alopecia Areata literally translates to "bald spot". It's what the doctors call it when you have a bald spot and they don't know what it is from. They have to have something fancy to call it, after all.

So please don't think that there is something wrong with you. It just happens to people, and it usually is no big deal. Take it from a hairstylist who has seen it a million times. ;)

Good for you for taking such great care of yourself though! Keep reading and educating yourself, and sharing with us what you find!

tara said...

Yes, seriously, I have seen Alopecia areata on other people. I have seen it come from an accident involving a good bump to the noggin, and from stress, medication, allergies, you name it. I know one guy who had half of his mustache fall out and the other half was fine! The hair usually starts to grow back in about two months. Often someone else will be able to see it before you can, so ask your stylist to keep an eye on it for you.

That said, I would definitely suggest that you mention it to your doctors if you decide to talk to them about the odd periods you have had. You are absolutely right in thinking that maybe all of it is indicative of a larger problem. I just didn't want you thinking that you had some specific hair disorder that was going to haunt you forever. It might be nothing, it might be part of a larger problem, but it, in itself, is not a problem. Did that make any sense at all?

jehara said...

i have been feeling this way about yoga lately too. i have really been keeping up with my practice during the past couple of months and i am reaping the benefits in a major way.

i also heart lush products. freaking amazing. and they finally opened one up in dallas about a year ago or so.

kudos for finding that balance of mind body wellness.

Gypsy said...

I've slowly been trying to transition to more natural beauty products, too. Let us know how this works for you. :)

Baraka said...

I love the Skin Deep website - it has totally changed the way I buy & use cosmetics!

Hope you're well,