Healthy Skin Challenge: Day 17

Day 17 – Toxins, toxins everywhere… achieving healthy skin in a toxic environment

Did you know that your skin is a super absorber? As we discussed earlier, your skin is a major component of your immune system and acts as your first line of defense against environmental toxins. Medicines and vitamins can be applied to the skin and absorbed very effectively. Unfortunately, your skin can also absorb harmful, toxic chemicals as well. Harmful toxins can be taken into the body both through the foods we eat, which can be contaminated with pesticides, and also through the things we apply to our skin.

Think about your typical day – how many health and beauty products do you apply to your skin during your morning routine? Shampoo, conditioner, soap, shaving cream, body lotion, facial moisturizer, eye cream, makeup, mousse, hairspray, perfume… you get the idea. Some products contain harmful toxins which can enter our bodies and weaken our immune system and affect our skin too. Do you really know what’s in the products you apply to your body?  There’s a fabulous organization called the Environmental Working Group who has tested thousands of products and rated them according to their toxicity. You can find the list on their website in the Skin Deep Cosmetics database.


We are exposed to toxins in our diets every day too. Eating organic foods is a good way to lessen your exposure, but can be costly. The Environmental Working Group also tests foods to determine which are the most contaminated.  They publish two lists, which are updated annually called the “Dirty Dozen” and the “Clean Fifteen”. The Dirty Dozen lists the most contaminated produce items. I recommend that you always buy organic when eating these foods. If organic is simply not in your budget, then focus on eating from the “Clean Fifteen” – these are the least toxic produce items.

The challenge today:  Clean up your body!  Check the resources on the site and elsewhere to see if the products you apply to your skin are poisoning you.  Also check out the Dirty Dozen and make an effort to buy organic or eliminate these foods from your diet.

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