My clean living journey began when my first son Rowan was born 9 years ago. I was made aware of some of the harmful chemicals in body products a little before him, by some of my green, crunchy momma friends. But I was a hairstylist and immersed in Chemicals with hair color and hair products. So I was a bit naïve and blasé.
However I did buy a 96% natural baby wash, cause your first baby can only have the Best, right. At 2 days old I gave him his first “natural body wash” bath. Oh the pure stress! A brand New Sleep deprived Momma, with a colicky baby who hated, and I MEAN hated baths. We made it through only to watch his pour skin erupt with a reaction, big blotchy rash from head to toe. Emphasis on New Momma and sleep deprivation here ;(. This raised rash led me to research all the ingredients listed on the bottle, a little obsessively. Side note: Google has changed my life since 8 years ago, oh the ways they’ve helped a tired brain with mothering. J
Most of the ingredients had no side effect and came up empty handed and then there was one word that didn’t. That tricky word that none of us know what it means. Fragrance, that little word I discovered is a hiding places for 100’s of ingredients out of a list of 3,000+. So there is no way of really knowing what caused the severe reaction in my 2-day-old baby. Scary and confusing.
Well that changed my thinking and we purchased fragrance free everything and took anything with the word Fragrance or parfum out of our home. The Environmental Working group says, “ The word "fragrance" or "parfum" on the product label represents an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals and ingredients used as fragrance dispersants such as diethyl phthalate. Fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system.”
How can this be? The short of it is that the FDA allows companies to keep these ingredients secret through a loophole of “trade Secret”. So that no other company can copy their toxic formulation (Sigh), not really protecting us as the consumer. Only allows for a sneaking in of ingredients that are harmful to our health. And most of us without a severe reaction would never notice it. Endocrine disrupting, carcinogenic and other compounds that can cause fatigue and health adversities.
Here’s the Long version of it and a very eye opening explanation.
What can you do? Start reading labels and know what you are putting on your skin and breathing in. Begin taking out heavily fragranced items in your household and replace with other natural alternatives. Research companies and their ethics, Norwex does have fragrance in some of our products, but the ingredients are the safer alternative. And the choice is always yours whether to have them or not.
We are a fragrance free home outside of my not so fragrance free hair care products. Hard habit to break, I tried many others but they just didn’t cut it. I felt the same way when switching to “green cleaners” before Norwex. Baby Steps are key and you probably have already made the Big leap to Norwex, so you are on your way to greater health and wellness and a Safe Haven.
What are some of my alternatives? There are many items on the market that use pure ingredients and essential oils to add scent to their products. Essential oils are my favorite way, they smell amazing and have added health benefits ;) you can make your own lotions and concoctions with much healthier alternatives. Stay tuned in my favorite things section; I’ll share my favorite DIY recipes.