This is the post where I spend a few paragraphs sufficiently freaking you out about summertime skincare products, to the point where you stay inside, safely air conditioned and away from bugs, sun, and fun...
Just kidding! While mom and I will generally never pass up an opportunity to get on our soapboxes (get it?!) about the slew of unpronounceable ingredients on commercial skincare labels that can spell t-r-o-u-b-l-e, we're also not out to frighten and overwhelm. Take the tips below as a way to feel empowered about the choices you make this summer, start by subbing in one natural product, and get outside and enjoy!
Bug Repellent: Should we be surprised at this point that nature has spent a few eons creating plant-based defenses against mosquitoes, gnats, and ticks? Instead of dousing yourself with DEET and other pesticides, use a natural bug repellent. Our natural Bug Repellent Spray, our Bug Repellent Stick, and our Camper Soap are formulated with essential oils of lemongrass, eucalyptus, rose geranium, cedarwood, and litsea cubeba--a great substitute for use especially by children and pregnant women. And yes. It does work: besides hearing our customers rave about the product year after year, dive-bombing mosquitoes and annoying gnats at a recent backyard BBQ here in Nashville were FOILED by our bug spray which left me more energy to drink sangria and kill it in bocce ball.
Sunscreen: The key to safe and natural sunscreens lie in physical sunblocks rather than chemical sunblocks. Women especially should avoid oxybenzone (an easily-absorbed endocrine disrupter) and look for non-nano zinc and other plant extracts that carry natural SPFs. You can use our Sun Stick Lip Balm for lip-specific protection, and while we don't currently carry a full-body sunblock (in development!) there are some great ones out there and you can use the Environmental Working Group's 2015 Guide to Sunscreens as a buying guide. And, if you're ocean-swimming this year, you'll be doing the coral reefs a big ole favor.
Poison Ivy Killer: Since I dropped out of Girl Scouts after the cookie-selling part of the gig, I'm still pretty terrible at identifying poision ivy (leaves of three? Almost all plants have three leaves...so confusing). So, our Summer Mint Soap is pretty much essential in the summer for me and all others who get poison ivy rashes just by looking in its general direction. This soap is tri-acting: because it's not a detergent, the soap molecules more effectively latch onto poison ivy oils and wash it away from your skin. The peppermint essential oils cool irritated skin, and the oatmeal gently soothes. And every summer we get orders from the patients of a few pediatricians in our area who recommend our Healing Salve for patients who got it, got it bad and want to go the non-steroid-shot-route.
Any tips and tricks of your own? Any natural summer skincare products you can't live without?