Many people pay close attention to what they eat and consider the ingredients that go into their bodies. We’d never knowingly ingest something that we know could harm us, or feed it to our children.
However, it’s easy to be less diligent about what we put onto our bodies. From soaps and facial cleansers to lotions and cosmetics, we use a bevy of skincare products regularly. Have you read the ingredient labels on your favorites? A majority of store-bought options are filled with chemicals, preservatives, and other additives that are known to have adverse effects.
There are plenty of natural skincare alternatives that are free of harmful chemicals and other unhealthy ingredients. Switching to these products is a small but mighty way to prioritize your family’s health and safeguard their well-being.
"I love this soap. It helps keep my skin clear, and I get lots of compliments about how good my complexion is. I recommend it to everyone, including to my sister when her daughter (my niece) starting presenting with severe eczema. After my sister started using the Purity soap on her, the eczema cleared up and has stayed away. I also really appreciate how committed PJ and her family are to keeping their products free from harmful ingredients. I feel better knowing that I'm putting safe products on my skin." - Caroline
Today, we’re taking a look at some of the most common ingredients you might find in the skincare realm, and why it’s smart to avoid them. We’ll also share a little more about our natural goat milk soap and our mission to change the game for the better.
There are two types of soap people in the world.
The first will use any bar they see in the shower, lathering with it until it becomes a tiny sliver and someone replaces it with a fresh one. Then, there are those who are a little pickier. They prefer specialty soaps and great-smelling concoctions with fancy names and intricate packaging.
"Love, love, love the Black Raspberry. I love that the soaps do not leave a residue on your skin. Ordered some extra bars and have gave them to my neighbors as a "Just Because". The ordering process is always awesome. Packaging A++++. The personal touches that this company provides is very much appreciated. Stay safe, stay well." - Robin D.
No matter which category you fall into, it’s important to know what ingredients are in the products that you’re using. Just because a soap product wound up on the drugstore shelf does not mean it’s entirely safe for you or your loved ones.
In fact, many of the most well-known brands are laden with harmful chemicals. Not only can these dry your skin out and leave you needing more (like a soda when you’re thirsty), but they can also have detrimental long-term effects on your health.
It can be easy to sweep these concerns under the rug. After all, it’s only soap and you’re just putting it onto the surface of your skin, right?
"The Vanilla soap is just delicious! I love the smell & the way my skin feels. I love all the different soaps I’ve ordered! Thank you for your devotion to making quality products without the chemicals we do not want or need!" - Teresa H.
This is a common misconception, and it’s time to debunk it. Any time you put a product on your skin, you’re initiating a process called dermal absorption.
When this happens, the chemicals travel through the outer surface of your skin, not only penetrating its inner dermal layers but also entering directly into your body. From there, they can travel to your bloodstream and throughout the rest of your system. Studies show that this chemical absorption through the skin can be unnoticeable. Most of the time, you won’t actually feel the effects right away, but they’re working right under the surface.
In fact, in some cases, dermal absorption may represent the most significant exposure pathway to systemic toxicity. If dangerous chemicals are allowed to penetrate through your skin and enter your bloodstream, they could cause health problems beyond the site of entry. You can read more about the CDC’s explanation of dermal absorption here.
A simple bar of soap can be misleading. Lurking within the wrapper, there could be a range of noxious ingredients that could cause a variety of health concerns. Some of the most common risks include:
You may notice that a particular bar of soap irritates your skin. This is especially the case with many inexpensive drugstore varieties, which can leave you feeling itchy, red, and excessively dry. If those soaps can inflict that much damage on the outside of your body, think about the effects going on within it.
When you purchase our natural goat milk soap, you never have to worry. Not only are all of our soaps chemical free, but they’re also soothing and effective. Instead of cracking or peeling, your skin will feel hydrated, soft, and healthy. Plus, you can rest assured that your body is only absorbing nutrient-rich, natural ingredients that are actually good for it.
"LOVE IT!! Have been searching for awhile for dish soap that is effective, natural and in planet-safe packaging. Dish Washing Goat Milk Soap checks all the boxes, and, as an added bonus, has a great fresh smell. I plan to buy lots more. Thank you for this product!!" - D. M.
So, which ingredients should you look out for? Truthfully, the list is long and extensive. You might be surprised to learn how many fillers these companies can add to their formulas, either for the sake of weight, lather, or fragrance.
Here are a few of the most common culprits.
Parabens are a family of related, man-made chemicals that manufacturers often use as preservatives in cosmetic products. You can also find them in pharmaceuticals, foods, and beverages.
Designed to prevent the growth of mold, yeast, and bacteria, they’re added to personal care products to increase their shelf-life and stability. When they enter your body through dermal absorption, ingestion, or inhalation, they can enhance the actions of the natural estrogen known as estradiol, which could disrupt the normal functioning of your hormone system. The six most common types of parabens include methyl-, ethyl-, propyl-, isopropyl-, butyl-, and isobutylparaben.
Also called plasticizers, phthalates are a group of chemicals that manufacturers use to make plastics more durable. The colorless, oily liquids can also act as binding agents or solvents.
In the skincare realm, phthalates are found in almost every product on the aisle. This is why they’re known as the “everywhere chemicals.” From soaps and shampoos to hairspray and nail polish, it’s hard to find a supermarket bath or body solution that’s entirely phthalate-free. The ones you’re most likely to see on your label include:
They might be common, but that doesn’t make them safe. Long-term phthalate exposure can have a range of adverse impacts on your health. Like parabens, these endocrine-disrupting chemicals can cause damage to human reproductive, neurological, and developmental systems.
|"I ordered the Lavender deodorant for my girls and they are absolutely loving the product. The scent of the lavender is so calming and not over powering. Out of any of the natural and safe products this is by far the best product we have found out there. About 6 months ago I made my first order of soap and now taking things to the next level and started switching most of my products with the GMS products. Soaps, hand soaps, deodorant, laundry." - Karla F.|
Sulfates are chemicals that manufacturers use as cleansing agents. In addition to soaps and shampoos, you can also find them in other household products, such as cleaners and detergents.
"I waited a while before writing a review and I have to say I just love this laundry soap! It lasts a long time for the size of the bag. I took the tip of adding vinegar to my laundry instead of bleach and they were right! It's just a clean, healthy smell, no smell of vinegar on my clothes, just soft, clean laundry! I'll definitely by the refill bag before I run out. Thanks so much for making a safe, eco-friendly, healthy laundry detergent that smells so good and is good for you as well! Keep up the great work!" - Nancy
These are aggressive detergents comprised of sulfur-containing mineral salts. Brands that use them herald their ability to lift grease and oil off your skin and hair, then emulsify the grime and rinse it down the drain. The two most common sulfates include Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES).
Both SLS and SLES can irritate your eyes, skin, and lungs, especially if used frequently over time.
Next, let’s talk about some of the chemicals widely used as preservatives in soaps and other skincare products. Two names you might see on your label are Methylisothiazolinone (MIT) and Methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCI).
Both of these chemicals have been linked to lung toxicity and possible neurotoxicity. They can also trigger allergic reactions.
Other common skincare preservatives include the closely-related Butylatedhydroxy Anisole (BHA) and Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT). These chemicals are known to cause myriad health concerns, ranging from organ system toxicity to skin irritation.
One of the most well-known preservatives of all is Formaldehyde. In skincare, it’s used to prolong a product’s shelf life and prevent bacterial contamination. However, its health risks far outweigh any benefit it could provide. The acute and long-term effects of Formaldehyde exposure are well-researched and include skin irritation, shortness of breath, and changes in lung function.
Manufacturers will also add certain ingredients to their formulas to make them appear thicker and creamier. While you might appreciate the texture, it’s important to know what you’re using.
One of the most common thickening agents is Cocamidopropyl Betaine (CAPB). This ingredient is a common allergen that can lead to skin discomfort and eye irritation. Back in 2004, the American Contact Dermatitis Society even declared CAPB the “Contact Allergen of the Year.”
Manufacturers also use a chemical called Diethanolamine to make their products creamy or sudsy. It can cause nose and throat irritation, and high levels of exposure could lead to liver, kidney, blood, or central nervous system damage.
Other chemicals that act as thickeners include Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) compounds. Polyethylene is the most common form of plastic and turns into a thick, sticky liquid when combined with glycol. These compounds are usually followed by a number (e.g. PEG-6, PEG-8, PEG-100) that represents their approximate molecular weight.
PEG chemicals can contain contaminants, including measurable amounts of ethylene oxide, which can harm the nervous system and interfere with human development.
As Goat Milk Stuff, we’re committed to keeping all of these chemicals out of our products. We make sure to use fragrance oils that are free of both parabens and phthalates. We make a foaming liquid soap instead of a chemically-thickened version.
"Absolutely love the Black Raspberry liquid soap! I keep it at my kitchen sink and my guest bath. Every one loves how it makes your hands feel SO soft. And the scent!!!! It’s simply divine! I’ll never be without this fabulous soap." - Marsha L.
We choose to use dehydrated goat milk in our lotions and lip balms so we don't need chemical preservatives. And we promise you’ll never find any carcinogens, mutagens, reproductive toxins, or organ toxins in any of our formulas.
"I’ve been using the Almond goat milk lip balm and it’s one of my favorites. It keeps my lips nourished and hydrated and I will continue to use it." - Kim L.
We’re transparent about our dedication to ingredient safety and we take your health seriously. Our products are safe to be absorbed by your skin, featuring non-irritating, food-grade ingredients that don’t harm the environment and never require any form of animal testing.
"I have been using products from Goat Milk Stuff for many years! I really like the Oatmeal Milk & Honey soap. It has left my skin hydrated and has a light clean scent. I will enjoy this and will continue to use your products as they have helped with my adult acne, rosacea and dry skin! It really works!" - Dolores R.
Are you ready to ditch those miles-long ingredient lists and embrace a cleaner, healthier, simpler bath routine? Our natural goat milk soaps come in a variety of types, so shop our full A-Z collection online today! As always, you can reach out to our team to learn more or ask any questions. Say goodbye to skincare that harms and treat your skin to the goodness of goat milk.
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