Tuesday 26 April 2011

There's Lead in Your Lipstick by Gillian Deacon

Published by Penguin Group Canada

Each morning we spritz, soak, and slather ourselves in 127 different chemicals, many of which are toxic. Each time we draw a bubble bath for a child, lather foaming cream for a shave, or deodorize our underarms, we expose our bodies to innumerable chemicals with limited research on their long-term health effects. The cosmetics industry is not required to prove an ingredient is safe for human health before it is used in a consumer product. Shocking, but true.

Gillian Deacon is a breast cancer survivor who decided to write this book when learning about the many toxins that are placed into so many of our beauty products and I am so glad she did. Gillian shares with the readers that she was reading Stacy Malkan's 'Not Just a Pretty Face: The Ugly Side of Beauty' while waiting to have an ultrasound to help diagnose her possible breast cancer. That book inspired this brilliantly researched, informative and invaluable resource that literally shocked me to hell.

Never have I been so relieved that I am not a person who likes to wear make-up. More shocking though are the amount of products that seem to contain ingredients that are known, or suspected to cause breast cancer. In one chapter that really grabbed my attention, Gill Deacon shares the following facts:
  • More American women have died of breast cancer in the last 20 years than the number of Americans killed in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined.
  • Many of the big cosmetics corporations that position themselves as leaders in the struggle to eradicate breast cancer - holding annual fundraisers and pink-ribbon campaigns - are in fact, makers and marketers of products that contain many ingredients known or suspected to cause breast cancer.
More shocking still, in other chapters, was the sheer volume of baby products - products we believe we can trust to use with our precious young, that contain crazy amounts of toxins. Baby powder for example.
  • Talc is still found in some baby powders and as a moistureabsorbing ingredient in products like eyeshadow, blush, and deodorant. Talc is similar to asbestos in its chemical composition. It is linked to ovarian cancer and is also a probable respiratory toxin. Watch for ingredients listed as talc, French talc, or cosmetic talc.
What also concerned me, was info about baby shampoos from a brand that I had long trusted when my children were babies. Shampoos that contained ingredients that cause developmental issues, among other things. I was horrified. The news isn't all bad though. In addition to sharing a great deal of information along with the encouragement to make your own well-informed choices, Gill Deacon provides countless sources for truly natural and safe products that we can use without concern. Or at least, with the knowledge we are harming ourselves less. I especially liked that recipes for making your own products were included. One of my favourites is:
Make It Yourself: Moisturizing Mask

Greek yogourt is also very moisturizing and can be used as a base for this mask.

1/2 medium to large avocado
1 to 2 tbsp honey 5 to 15 mL

Puree ingredients together in a blender or whip by hand.
For dry, sensitive skin, add one tablespoon of oatmeal and one tablespoon of water.
Mix together into a smooth paste and apply to the face and neck area, leaving on for about ten minutes.

From There’s Lead in Your Lipstick by Gillian Deacon (Penguin Canada). Copyright © Backbone Inc. FSO Gillian Deacon, 2011
One of the resources spoken of in the book, was EWG's Skin Deep Cosmetic Database. I rushed to check it and was astounded at how many of my usual products are in the higher hazard range. To be honest, this book troubled me a great deal. So much so that when reading about shampoo and body wash, I sprinted out of bed and checked the bottles in my bathroom for the dreaded ingredients and was dismayed to see so many of them present. This book is a definite wake-up call and I have decided because of it, that our home is going to be a more natural environment and not just with personal hygiene products, but with general household cleaners and more.

I can't recommend this book enough. Please read it. In order to help people to transition to healthier products, the author has also created a wallet-sized tip sheet with important things to remember. You can find it by clicking on the image below.

I'm also happy to announce that as part of this blog tour, a prize is being offered. The prize contains a copy of There’s Lead In Your Lipstick and an Eco Kiss kit from the folks at Saffron Rouge (combined value of approx. CDN $48.95.)

It's open to Canadian residents only. Simply drop me an e-mail at: theliteraryword [at] gmail [dot] com with the answer to the following question (answer can be found at Gillian Deacon's site):

What is the title of Gillian Deacon's other bestselling book that is a friendly how-to guide to making simple changes in your day-to-day life for a cleaner, healthier world?

The first person to e-mail me with the correct answer will win the goody pack!

To check out other reviews from fellow blog tour participants, visit the links below:

April 26 The Literary Word (You are already here!)
April 27 Just a Lil Lost
April 28 In the Next Room

1 comment:

Heather said...

Thanks for your review. It was an eye opener. I visited Gillian's site and printed out the wallet guide. Great information.