Trying a toxin free beauty and cleaning lifestyle…



DISCLAIMER: I’m no health care professional but just under a year ago was diagnosed with endometriosis and now feel mega empowered to be more aware of the burden I have been putting on my body during my adult life. So I have since chosen a route that feels in tune with my new personal wellbeing mission; an altogether gentler approach for my body.


Have you ever wondered about the effects of the beauty and cleaning products that you routinely spray, rub in, lather up and dab on before you’ve even left the house each day?

Take a typical day of yours. Scan through your routine in your mind and you’ll probably lose count of how many dollops of stuff you’ve piled on.

You’ll likely shower, washing your hair, body and face. You then dry off and roll or spray on deodorant/antiperspirant (side note: we’re supposed to perspire. It regulates our body temperature).

You move on, perhaps moisturising before beginning to make yourself up (applicable to both men and women increasingly!); foundation, concealer, bronzer, blusher, highlighter, eyeliner, mascara.

You then might prep some breakfast at which point you probably come into contact with a mix of antibacterial sprays, washing up liquid, wipes, maybe even bleach.

You’ll need a bathroom stop for sure (metabolism dependent) and then you’ll wash your hands. If you’re a gal on your period you might insert a tampon. Don’t forget to brush those teeth before a spritz of perfume to send you on your way.

CHRIST. How’s your body? Overloaded much? Is it even 8am?



When I found out I had endometriosis I immediately become more curious about the daily cocktail of products I pile on to my skin, hair, inside my own mouth and what happens beneath the surface.

Since March I’ve read articles, watched documentaries and tried to sift out the scaremongering from the advertising messages bombarding us from big pharma companies in order to come to the conclusion that I was terrified. Terrified that the products routinely lured in front of us on our TV screens, endorsed by celebs or stocked in our local Boots are actually putting our health at risk; messing with our hormones and leaving us exposed to the likes of cancer.

It seems that we’re tangled up in consumerism, perfection and product marketing campaigns mostly reserved for the big cosmetic companies (who more often than not have ties with creating the drugs to ‘cure’ us from preventable diseases…go figure). The eco, human kind, animal friendly ones don’t get a look in. We’ve lost control and sight of what’s really important, above all else; health. We’re ruled by advertising, desire and convenience.

I’m no divine creature of the earth by any stretch, however I now declare myself less terrified and more proudly interrogative when it comes to health. I’ve chosen to question more things, not least the ridiculousness surrounding having the latest, beautifully packaged beauty product in my makeup bag just to fit into some sort of club. No. Give me heebie jeebie brands any day of the week. There are plenty of kind brands out there making stuff that won’t overwhelm our systems nearly as much, let’s give those guys a look in huh?



When I first got into this approach, I was all ‘look at this bottle of gunk, oooooh no parabens you say? Sold!’ and I didn’t really know why that was a good thing. Which I guess you could argue is as bad as picking up an Imperial Leather soap that is likely loaded with badness and just not batting an eye.

I still haven’t got the below down and on the tip of my tongue and the below descriptions are gathered from as reputable sources I can find, featuring actual studies. All I know is that I feel like being free as possible of these chemicals in the products I use is the right direction for me. That is all I can know to be true right?

Parabens: Chemical preservatives in beauty and personal care products. They stop bacteria developing in your creams and makeup. Sounds good right? No one wants mouldy foundation.

Parabens have been found in tissues of women with breast cancer and are thought to mess with women’s endocrine systems – the collection of glands that produce hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, and mood. Parabens can mimic oestrogen which is a mare for endometriosis sufferers as endo thrives on the stuff.

Phthalates: These are a class of a multitude of chemicals and the bastards are everywhere. They’re used in everything from household cleaners to food packaging to fragrance, cosmetics, and personal-care products. They act as binding agents and also make plastics flexible.

They are linked to asthma, ADHD, breast cancer, obesity and type II diabetes, low IQ, neurodevelopmental issues, behavioral issues, autism spectrum disorders, altered reproductive development and male fertility issues.

Pregnant women and young children are thought to be most at risk from phthalate exposure from a number of studies.

SLS / SLES: Sodium Lauryl / Sodium Laureth Sulfate. A chemical found in many mainstream personal hygiene products such as shampoos, toothpastes, mouthwashes, bodywash, soaps, detergents and body wash. If your normal SLS containing shampoo lathers up real good, this is the stuff making that happen. So when you switch to chemical free shampoo you might not thinking its cleaning too good at first.

More research needs to be done about this stuff, but again there are concerns about its link to cancers. What we do know is that they can lead to skin corrosion and severe skin irritation. So if thats the stuff we can see, what in the name of christ is going on in the inside once it seeps through?

Formaldagyde & Toluene: Chemicals routinely found in nail varnish, alongside lots of phthalates, parabens and triphenyl phosphate. Mmmmmm, yummy.

Highly debated as to risks surrounding hormone disruption, cancers, reproductive issues.

Aluminium compound, Propylene Glycol, TEA and DEA (triethanolamine and diethanolamine), Triclosan, Talc: Quite often a heady mix of this little lot is in your average antiperspirant, along with a dash of parabens.

Aluminium: block the sweat glands to keep sweat from getting to the skin’s surface. Some research has suggested that these              aluminum compounds may be absorbed by the skin and cause changes in estrogen receptors of breast cells.

Propylene Glycol: originally developed as an anti-freeze. It is a neurotoxin known to cause contact dermatitis, kidney    damage, and liver damage

TEA and DEA: already restricted in Europe due to known carcinogenic (cancer- causing) effects.

Triclosan: a skin irritant and may cause contact dermatitis. Recent studies suggest this chemical may disrupt thyroid function and other critical hormone systems.

4-Methylbenzylidene: 4-MBC is used in sunscreen lotions to help protect the body from UV rays; mainly UV B rays. It has been shown through studies to be an endocrine disruptor as a xenoestrogen.

Fluoride: according to a 500-page scientific review, fluoride is an endocrine disruptor that can affect your bones, brain, thyroid gland, pineal gland and even your blood sugar levels.



Here we go. The good bit. To follow are pics of the products I now use to shower, wash, soften, clean, volumise, and the most important part, to colour in my face on a daily basis. I’ve uploaded them sort of in the order I use them on an average day…

And the real beauty of all this? The humble TK Maxx is a bloody treasure trove for it all. They definitely stock Faith in Nature and Cowshed for a start but once you start rifling through their beauty racks and read the labels there are just so many gentler products right there at a fraction of the normal price. Not to take away from the cool little health shops who we should be spending our cash with to keep them going – the likes of Earth Natural Foods in Kentish Town where i’ll normally grab my bits. But we’re not all near one of those right? So it’s good to know then, that the likes of TK Maxx is a viable option.

{Faith in Nature is a regular go-to. Yep, even Rupert the sausage dog is now chemical free thanks to them. Kind Natured I found recently in Boots!}

{Amazing excuse to head to a Cowshed Spa for a treatment right? Love this leave in hair treatment too – gives volume and smells delish. By Lavera.}

{Average tampons often contain chlorine and shit. I go for Natracare. This Kingfisher toothpaste flavour is my FAVE…if you like aniseed…yum! One thing i’ve struggled with is deodorant. I’ve tried all sorts and haven’t been completely pleased with the result. Scent of Samadhi is an Ayurvedic sandalwood scented powder which I am currently giving a go on the advice of a dear relative in Australia. I really like it so far and the scent is said to lift your mood. Got mine from Amazon}

{Face cleaning things. Micellar water is a newbie for me and I really like – doesn’t seem to be stripping my face dry as water and a wash can sometimes. Dr Organic moisturiser, and an Alba Botanica face wash option that Mr G often ‘borrows’ which is soon nice. NB: Organic cotton wool pads}

{This journey had made me REALLY evaluate my makeup choices and I’m still to find replacements for my normal eyeliner and bronzer. But I love this Inika foundation and Lavera blusher, plus the glorious Charlotte Tilbury even has a ‘paraben free’ page on her website. And she doesn’t test on animals. Frankincense perfume by Neals Yard is my fave.}

{This Jason spray body lotion is such a good find. I get really dry elbows and hands so spray this on throughout the day. Ive got one at home and one on my desk at work. It smells gorge. Also really like this Lavera hand cream for my bag}

{Tan Organic. Does what is says – goes on easily, doesn’t stink and fades perfectly. Found this in Wholefoods}

{Researched the best non gel, less toxic, gel like varnishes! Found RGB and Deborah Lippmann on Net-a-Porter (pronounced port-ay don’t you know). Debbie’s gel pro base and top coats really do nearly give you that plump gel like finish. The varnish remover is by Suncoat and is corn and soy based and found on Amazon. Still pongs but less chemical based}

{Other good options for makeup removal}

{Special treats for your face by Kiehls and REN}

{Nighttime sleepy sleeperson stuff by This Works, Cowshed and Tisserand…..zzzzzzzz}


At home we try and stick to Method products. Safe and kind to humans and animals plus they all smell amazing. Every now and then we resort to Ecover if we can’t find a Method stockist. But Tesco now stocks it! Hoorah!


So there we have it.

And to add to the fact that we now distill our own water at home, go for BPA free plastics, our next mission that we’ve chosen to accept, is to get rid of all the teflon stuff in our cupboards. Did you know most babies are born with teflon chemical PFOA, linked to cancer, in their bloodstreams? Good start.

I feel another trip to TK Maxx coming on. What? I’ve got vouchers okay? 😉


P.S – Realise this sounds like an ad for TK Maxx. I’m in no way affiliated with them or paid by them (I wish!), I just really like it there.



3 comments so far.

3 responses to “Trying a toxin free beauty and cleaning lifestyle…”

  1. Sharon says:

    This is great Sweetie. I have used the Alba Botanicals for years and the Pineapple Enzyme Facewash is my favourite!
    We have another great line of products here in Australia called MooGoo and their makeup division is called Dusty Girls – worth a look. Electra magnesium creams are excellent too and as most of us are magnesium deficient it is an easy way to get it into our systems as I have read we absorb it more efficiently through our skin than internally. My favourite scent is the Citrus but you can order a sample pack from Nourished Life here in Aus just to try. Not sure about availability in the U.K. but definitely worth researching.
    Keep the blogs coming and I will add my tuppence worth here and there! ?

    • vickygooden says:

      Yay Sharon! Thank you 🙂 Yes I take magnesium supplements to help with sleep but had no idea about how it gets absorbed through the skin. I shall research! x

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