I’ve struggled with skin issues for as long as I can remember. I’ve tried all sorts of medications, including birth control and other hormonal prescriptions. After college, I started to think more about healthier eating and living, but I didn’t really consider the effects of the dozens of products I used on my skin until about two years ago. It just didn’t cross my mind that my skin care products could actually be part of the problem.

About two years ago, I came off of hormonal birth control as an experiment. I had been thinking about it for a while, and when I forgot it on a vacation, it just seemed like the right time (aka I really didn’t have a choice). I decided to rip the band-aid off and stop using the other hormonal medication as well since my husband and I knew we soon wanted to start a family. (Serious acne meds are a no-go during pregnancy.)

Within days, not only did my skin erupt, but I suddenly had so many migraines. In coming off the meds I had taken for so long, I had thrown my body’s hormones completely out of whack. I desperately had to figure out how to get back on track. So I focused on what I considered healthy living: I started exercising, eating well (I stopped eating dairy and gluten for a long time), and tried to keep my anxiety and stress levels in check.

I realized that while things were improving, I still couldn’t get my skin fully under control. I came across some info while checking out one of my favorite clean eating blogs, Lexi’s Clean Kitchen. I totally connected with her story, and she promoted Beautycounter on her blog as a safer alternative to the products many of us use everyday. So I started swapping out my skin care and makeup products for these safer and cleaner options. I didn’t realize that many of our daily products contain hormone disrupters (a lot more on this another day). Over time, I replaced many of my old favorites and found new ones that not only proved safer, but actually worked. I haven’t looked back.

I started with the Charcoal Cleansing Bar, Charcoal Mask, and the Tint Skin Foundation. These are still staple items for me, especially when experiencing breakouts, but I’ve since found more and more “gotta have it” products. As I started reading more about how the chemicals in our products affect not only our skin, but our overall health, the more I became committed and passionate about the company’s mission. Some of the standout statistics that pulled me in include:

  • The European Union has banned 1,400 ingredients in personal care products. Canada has banned 600, and the United States has banned a mere 30.
    • Beautycounter SELF-REGULATES and chooses not to use any of those ingredients in their products (1,500 total). This list comprises The Never List.
  • There are only 2 pages of legislation regulating a $62 billion dollar industry! So when a company tells you that they comply with all federal legislation regarding personal care products, remember that you need to hold them to a higher standard — look for a self-regulating company and check the ingredient list yourself. 
  • The FDA does not have the same authority over cosmetics as it does Food and Drugs. Cosmetics ingredients and products do not need be approved before they go on the market, and FDA has no power to issue product recalls.

This is really just a sample of the many staggering amount of statistics. I started to really get upset when reading about the harmful amount of synthetic chemicals found in all Americans (including infants) like phalates and hormone-altering chemicals. Researchers estimate that the exposure to toxic chemicals is responsible for nearly $80 billion in health care costs!

While I’m a reasonable human and try not to overreact about these sorts of things (yes, of course we could all get sick from anything at any time…), I felt like I had more control over this. Everyday, when I get in the car, I CHOOSE to put a seatbelt on (this wasn’t a law years ago…), I CHOOSE not to smoke, and I CHOOSE to exercise to better my health. These choices have the purpose of keeping me alive and healthy. I am so thankful that I can CHOOSE healthier and safer products for myself and my family, but I wanted to go even further.

While everyone has the ability to make a choice and swap to safer products, I felt like education in this area is sorely lacking. I had no idea about any of this until I started doing my research because of my own health issues. It seems like common sense that our cosmetics should be regulated for potentially cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting chemicals (just like food and drug regulation, the law requiring seat belts, and the fact that smoking in airplanes is illegal are all common sense). I wanted to join the movement and educate others about the personal benefits of cleaner options and to act as advocate for greater federal regulation.

This was (and still is) a huge step out of my comfort zone. To be honest, I have never really been a fan of the direct sales, multilevel marketing (MLM) approach and business model. It made me super uncomfortable. But when I thought about the goals of this company – to educate, inspire, and advocate for safer products for everyone – I realized that the model made sense. When it’s about spreading the word so we can not only build a business but protect ourselves and our kids, I’m on board. Gregg Renfrew, founder and CEO, discusses why direct sales was the best and only option for the company in this video:

Remember, this along with anything else, is about progress and NOT perfection. I will never give up a cheeseburger, and I love my Living Proof Dry Shampoo. Pretty sure neither of these fall into the “clean lifestyle” category. I also highlight my hair and get my nails done far too often. What can you do?

As a consultant, I do of course make a commission on purchases. That being said, I would NEVER have jumped on board with this (because it is out of my comfort zone) if I did not wholly believe in the products and the mission. My goal is to educate others about the cosmetics industry and to make product recommendations to help you live a cleaner lifestyle – sometimes this includes Beautycounter products, other times it may mean I’m recommending something else entirely! I have access to a lot of information and products, so please reach out if you have any questions about anything or want to shop!

If you feeling inspired and want to know more about the business, please email me and we can chat about that, too! (meghan@groundedathome.com).

Do you want to know more? Would you like me to post about my favorite products or routines? Leave a comment and tell me what you’d like to learn more about in a future post!

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