Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Avoiding Parabens

The lastest buzz is to avoid parabens in cosmetics. Now what does one do to replace these parabens and why are these being replaced? It has to do with a study based in the UK that parabens were found in breast tumour tissue and cause cancer (2004). I've been researching this whole paraben buzz. First, some companies do use a lot of parabens to have a long shelf life for their cosmetics and others use very little. In place of being paraben free some companies use an alternative that is derived from formeldyhyde...gee I think that is worst than parabens.

Secondly, I checked out both the Canadian Cancer Association http://www.cancer.ca
and the American Cancer Association to discover their comments on parabens and the report made in 2004. Check it out for yourself.

Thirdly, be an informed consumer like myself. Natural products aren't always as good as they seem. The word "natural" can be used by anyone. Vitamin E can be made synethically as well. Plant products can have pesticides and herbicides on them and be used in natural cosmetics. Essential oils can play havoc with skin too.

I have even purchased a natural skin cream, only to have it grow bateria within a few weeks. Bacteria which could have caused my skin and eyes major damage.

I say there will always be something to be removed from cosmetics. Lead, hair dye was an issue a few years back, paba in suntan lotions, the list goes on.

As someone with sensitive skin I've searched and searched for products that do not cause me grief with my skin. Most people find it amazing that I have a problem because my skin is so great. What is my secret??

I use suntan lotion every day--research skin cancer online.
I don't use tanning beds
I drink lots of water, green tea, white tea and only 2-3 cups of coffee
I eat organic and pesticide free produce as much as I can
I exercise indoors in bad weather, outdoors in good weather
I don't wear a lot of makeup and never foundation
I didn't paint my finger or toe nails for years, it just smelled so bad and now only use vegan polish

I've always researched the products I've purchased, used fair trade,certified organic or more natural products all my life. I've asked lots of questions and have purchased from people who develop and use their own products. Think about it, would you create a product and use it yourself knowing it contained ingredients that might cause you to develop cancer? I really don't think any woman is that vain.

We live in a world full of chemicals and it is hard to avoid them. All you can do is try your best to live a healthy life and be an informed consumer.

Ask yourself this...if you use paraben free products, certified organic cosmetics, etc. do you sit outside at the sidewalk cafe and breath in the gas fumes from the traffic??

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Eurovision 2007 - Another Entry

Check out Youtube for more of the Eurovision 2007 entries. Clive was correct--the UK entry was appalling...actually, if possible, it was worse than appalling...Here's the entry from Bulgaria. France had, well, ermmm, one really has to see France's entry themselves.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Cocoon Apothecary

This is the third installment to finding a new skincare line. Cocoon Apothecary was the third try, after trying Nadarra www.nadarra.com and Heiko www.heiko.ca. Cocoon Apothecary is the creation of Jessica Burman. All the products are vegan and cruelty free www.cocoonapothecary.com

I ordered and tried the facial wash. I must say this was a very gentle cleanser and one which I think would be good for any skin type. My only disappointment was it is packaged in a plastic bottle. Plastic can be recycled but I think glass could be used instead.

The facial cream was great with rooibos tea added. I didn't like the smell at first but it did grow on me. Packing in a glass container gets a rating of A+.

The packing material used I was able to completly recycle. The box, the bubble wrap and the containers.

Jessica included a sample gift of her Chai lip balm. A fan of chai tea this product I really like.

My only concern with Jessica's products is some of the ingredients may be questionable based on the Environmental Working Group site and Skin Deep. I've been checking all cosmetic ingredients since Julia of Nadarra connected me with the Environmental Working Group/Skin Deep site www.ewg.org/

In keeping with my shopping rules, local first, province wide second and Canada third I would have to purchase these products on a limited basis. It is back to trying to find something closer to home that is natural, not full of essential oils that make me itch, contain no parabens and are cruelty free.

Salt Spring Soap Works

I'd heard that seaweed did wonders for one's skin, as did seamud. Since Salt Spring Soapworks is downtown and I happened to be doing some other errands I purchased the Spa Seamud Mask to try. It contains glacial clay, vegetable glyercine, meythl paraben, propyl paraben (I do try to avoid parabens whenever I can) and spa fragrance blend. The fragrance is so strong upon opening the jar that I was extremely wary of putting this stuff on my face. Since I've opened it I've tried it twice.

Stay away! Don't waste your money. This stuff made my face itch and the fragrance made my eyes water.

I'm hoping to return it once I find the receipt.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Eurovision Entry

Clive, my friend from the UK, has sent me another clip from Eurovision. Unfortunately the UK's entry was appalling, according to him. He did send this to me, this was the entry from Georgia on the Baltic coast. I rather like it!!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

May 4

Your Birthdate: May 4

You have an extraordinary character - moral, responsible, and disciplined.

Your sincerity and honesty shine through in almost every situation.

Driven and focused, you rarely let your emotions get the better of you.

You're level headed and rational. People count on your to look at things objectively.

Your strength: Your unwavering loyalty and ethics

Your weakness: Your rock solid stubbornness

Your power color: Navy blue

Your power symbol: Shield

Your power month: April

What Does Your Birth Date Mean?

Paddlefest, Ladysmith BC, May 12-13

Five of us went up to Ladysmith from Victoria for the day on Saturday, May 12. We had a great time taking workshops and paddling different boats. I tried two of the Lightspeed boats made here on the island, although I liked both of them I'd have to test them in rougher waters. I really liked the Necky Elisa, the first boat made for a woman. Finally kayak designers are realizing women aren't built like men and we need a tighter cockpit around the waist with more hip room. The Elisa is a great boat, it handled well eventhough it is narrower than my boat and felt a bit tippy this feeling soon passed. Made of plastic means it can be recycled, is easier to fix when/if damaged and isn't that much heavier than my Delta. I didn't try lifting it. I did take out a 17 ft Delta sport. A lot of boat, something that would be great for touring and when I plan on taking a long trip. There are several more kayaks to try. I am hoping to try a Seaward at MEC and Peter at Pacifica Paddle has something in mind for me to try too.

The best part of the day was winning a prize! I won a high quality dry bag that comes with instructions on how to open it. The seal is so strong it took me a few minutes to figure out how to open it from the instructions. Will be perfect for that longer trip. Plus, being my birthday month, it counts as an unexpected birthday present...the best kind!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

A new year

Although the year started in January, I really don't feel it has begun until May. It isn't just Spring and feeling renewed, it happens to be my birthday month and my birth date is at the beginning. I feel rejuvneated, I want to try something new, I want to make a change. I feel like a budding leaf, tightly curled up all winter and then unfurling dressed in bright leaf green.

Besides well wishes and gifts from my family and friends, I often am blessed with an unexpected gift. One time it was the upgrading of my job as transcript clerk on the day before my birthday. This year a similar event occurred and my current position was upgraded, the news being delivered to me on the day of my birthday. Actually the day I was told I was the successful candidate for my current postition was in November 2005, on a date that fell in the opposite astrological sign to my own and exactly 6 months (I consider 6 my lucky number) and a few days after my birthday.

The question I pose to myself now is....What do I want to try? I'm taking courses at university and I'm back kayaking every Sunday. I'm thinking of trying a stamping class to add an additional touch to my homemade cards. I've been researching cupcake cookbooks and the thought of taking a cake decorating course (again) has crossed my mind. I'd like to learn some new knitting stitches. The list is endless....

No doubts I will find one thing to try or try them all...the sun is shining and I start a new year..