Posts tagged alitura
Spring Detox - Products

Now that we’ve reevaluated the quality of our movement and cleaned up what we are putting inside our bodies this spring, it’s time to take a closer look at what we are feeding our skin. I’ve gone into great detail about how important it is to treat our largest and most exposed organ, our skin, with the same consideration as our inner organs HERE. Go back and give it a read for exactly what to avoid and what to look for. In this post I’m simply going to give you a sneak peek into my favorite products (store bought, some home made) and why I love them so much.



Aleavia Enzymatic Body Cleanser. This has only 7 all natural, simple ingredients. It is a prebiotic formula that doesn’t strip away your skin’s natural good bacteria. It is super gentle and healing to skin afflicted with rosacea, eczema, acne, dry skin, keratosis and psoriasis and if you do have problematic skin, I highly recommend coupling the cleanser with Aleavia’s Soothing Mist Restore. It promotes collagen reproduction and stimulates cellular repair of damage and can help reduce fresh scars. Another similar product I’ve tried and liked is Mother Dirt Face & Body Cleanser and AO Plus Mist Prebiotic Spray.


Another shout out for Aleavia - I use this as a cleanser for my face. My other favorite is a bit more high brow - Pure One Step Camelia Cleansing Oil by Tatcha. It is great for all types of skin, leaves the skin silky soft and has a subtle delicious scent to it.


Alitura Naturals. We’ve had Alitura Naturals on our shop page for a long time now. Their clay mask is still my favorite. It includes superfood ingredients such as 100% grass-fed colostrum, ginseng, and kelp powder. I use it once a week (when I remember) and my skin feels like porcelain afterwards.

For easy home made masks, look no further than your fridge. Some great combinations are:

  1. For hydration and antinflammation - 1 tablespoon of raw or Manuka honey, 1 tablespoon cacao powder and 1/4 mashed avocado

  2. For glowing skin - 1/2 banana, 1 tablespoon of raw or Manuka honey and 1 tablespoon orange juice

  3. For hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone - 2 tablespoons of raw or Manuka honey and 2 tablespoons mashed papaya


When ever I feel my skin is feeling tired and extra dry, especially after a night of one-too-many drinks, I turn to Simply Botanicals Skincredible Sandalwood Revitalizing Elixir. It works wonders for skin conditions such as rosacea, scars and blemishes, and is a lovely aftershave as well. I use it after cleansing, and before moisturizing (see below).


My everyday, all the time, and always in my bag serum is June CBD Face Oil. It is carefully crafted with some of the best organic and wildcrafted, hard to find food for skin ingredients and great for all skin types. My favorite part is that the company is owned my a kick-ass lady boss and fellow Brooklynite. I use a few drops of June, followed by Simply Botanicals Creme de Rose. I first found this cream at Erewhon, my favorite natural foods market in LA. It smells delicious, feels luxurious, is deeply nourishing to the skin and doesn’t clog pores.


I keep a fresh lip balm in every bag, jacket pocket, pantry, medicine cabinet, nook and cranny of the house. This may sound crazy, maybe so, but I like having a lip balm on hand at all times. My current favorite is L:A Bruket No. 17 Lip Balm Almond + Coconut.


This is where I tend to splurge on time and make my own. I love making my own whipped body butters. My favorite ingredients are always organic and include extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, shea or mango butter, green coffee bean oil, andiroba oil, rosehips oil, and a mix of essential oils such as sandalwood, lavender, vanilla, palmarosa. The brands of essential oils I trust and love are Snow Lotus and Floracopia. You can play around with the concentration and scents of essential oils, but the basic recipe is 1/3 cup of EVOO, 1/3 cup of coconut oil, 1/3 cup shea or mango butter. Slowly melt the butter in a small saucepan. Once it is completely liquid, add the EVOO and coconut butter and mix well. Allow to cool and solidify completely in the fridge or freezer. Put all ingredients in a food processor. Add essential oils and pulse until whipped and fluffy. Transfer to a clean, dark glass jar like THIS to protect the oils from oxidizing. (If you don’ feel like getting the food processor dirty, you can also beat with a handheld electric beater).

If you prefer to splurge with money over time, June CBD Body Oil is amazing, especially for those spots needing extra care. I often mix a few drops into my own concoctions. Rica Body’s Butter All Over Cream is luxurious and delicious. All their products are fresh and made-to-order in Brooklyn.


The skin under our arms is very delicate and sensitive. While we all want to smell great (or like nothing at all) even through our toughest workouts, conventional anti-perspirants contain hormone disrupting and cancer causing chemicals and personally, I’d rather stink than gamble with those possibilities. Our sweat isn’t actually what causes armpit funk. It is the combination of salt, water (aka sweat) and our bacteria that produces body odor. Natural deodorants won’t block your pores as an antiperspirant will do. They will work with the good, natural bacteria on your skin to reduce odors, while allowing your pores to remain open. It can be difficult to find a natural deodorant that actually works. We’ve found the Schmidt (especially the Charcoal and Magnesium scent), Native and Primal Pit Paste brands to be the most effective. Keep in mind that when switching to a natural product, it may take your body up to 2 weeks to adjust. Don’t give up!


Most of us don’t think twice about what the tiny thread we slide in between our teeth every day is made of. Unfortunately, the story is not a pretty one. Most dental floss is typically made of the following ingredients:

  1. Nylon which is plastic and petroleum based. Our bodies cannot break down petroleum. In addition it is super harmful to the environment.

  2. Hormone altering and carcinogenic Teflon.

  3. Synthetic wax made from petroleum.

Our favorite natural floss is Cocofloss. The packaging and flavors are fun and it is safe for humans and the environment.


What are the ingredients in your toothpaste? While most of us don’t go around swallowing a huge amount of toothpaste when we tend to our pearly whites, the time (2 minutes if you follow the 30 seconds per quadrant rule) it is in your mouth is long enough for quite a bit of absorption. (Isn’t 1 minute the amount of time we are told to hold CBD under our tongues for it to take effect)? One of the biggest toxic offenders in toothpaste is fluoride. Did you know fluoride is a registered insecticide and rodenticide? It’s been linked to some alarming dental and skeletal fluorosis, cancer, lower IQ in children and learning disorders, among other things.

There are many non-fluorinated toothpastes in the market these days. We love Dr. Bronner’s All-One Toothpaste (especially the cinnamon flavor) and Revitin, a prebiotic formula created renowned biological and integrative dentist, Dr. Gerry Curatola.


One of the most sensitive and absorbent areas of a woman’s body is her vagina and what she puts in there important (on so many levels - though we’ll stick to tampons for the sake of this post). The FDA does not require the labels of feminine care products to list all the ingredients in their products. Bleached and sometimes carcinogenic synthetic fibers such as rayon and are often found in the mix. To top that, any amount of cotton actually in the product is pesticide laden. Who wants that? Certainly not I. I use Cora. The brand is environmentally and socially responsible - 100% organic with a BPA-free applicator and proceeds from every box purchased goes towards providing plant-based, biodegradable sanitary pads to girls in need in India.


The subject of sunscreen is complicated. The light generated by the sun, as we know, is necessary for vitamin D and the proper generation of hormones. Blocking exposure to sunlight can be quite damaging to circadian rhythm, mood regulation and a number of other health issues. Healing and magnificent as it is, it can also be damaging in overdose.

The problems with conventional sunscreens are vast. Many contain toxic ingredients and endocrine disruptors that can promote skin cancer - just the thing we are trying to prevent by wearing it.

Research also shows that ingredients in many types of sunscreens are harmful to ocean life, especially coral. An estimated 5,000 metric tons of sunscreen wash off swimmer’s bodies each year, polluting the ocean and threatening ocean life.

What’s the solution? Here are my tips.

  1. Expose yourself to the sun in small doses all year round. As the summer approaches, begin titrating up your exposure so that your skin is able to tolerate longer periods in the sun. When you know you will be in the sun for extended periods of time, turn to an environmentally safe and non-toxic sunscreen such as the ones from Beauty Counter or have a look at the Environmental Working Group to see how your sunscreen fairs.

  2. Take Astaxanthin daily to help protect the skin from the inside out.

  3. Eat tomato paste. According to scientists, the lycopene found in red tomatoes can help protect the skin from sunburn.


We didn’t get into home cleaning products in this round, but here’s a simple and inexpensive recipe for a super effective all -purpose cleaning solution.

Mix equal parts white vinegar and distilled water in a spray bottle. (For a tougher clean up jobs use a 2:1 ratio fo white vinegar to water). Add drops of your favorite essential oil (quantity depends on how strong you like the scent to be) and shake it up. Anti-bacterial and anti-microbial and lovely scented essential oils include peppermint, tea tree, lemon, lavender and rosemary.

What are some of your favorite products? Please share. I am always looking for new ideas!

(Full disclosure:  There are some affiliate links above.  While we make a little bit of money if you make a purchase using our links, it is at no extra cost to you.  Rest assured, we honestly wouldn't be recommending them if we hadn’t tried them ourselves and given them a personal thumbs up!)

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Skin, so strange, and spectacular - if you really think about it.  It is our largest organ, our interface with the outside world.  Incredibly, it has the ability to take in vitamins and nutrients, protect us from harmful bacteria and frankly, holds our insides together, keeping it from spilling out into world.  The countless receptors in our skin signal our body how to react to stimuli (think FIRE) and adapt in terms of body awareness, balance, and stability throughout the entire system.  

On a deeper level, skin mirrors our wellness.  The nutrient density of our movement, eating, and sleep patterns coupled with our stress and happiness levels are all reflected in our skin's elasticity, clarity, tone and texture.  It is directly connected to our liver and our ability to flush out toxins.  Given all of its functions, feeding our skin, from the inside out and outside in, really should be right up there next to breathing, with regard to priorities in my humble opinion.

What are some ways to show your skin love?  Today I won't be taking a deep dive into movement, food, stress management or sleep.  I'll cover those topics in a later post.  Instead I'd like to steer the conversation to ingredients in products and slightly more fringe skin health concepts.

Did you know that the EU has banned over 1300 chemicals from cosmetics, while the US bans only 30?  With this in mind, we need to be our own detectives and label scourers.  

What are some ingredients to BEWARE of?  Here is a list of our top 11 (there are many more).

1. SLS or Sodium Lauyl Sulfate.  This ingredient is found in shampoos, body and face washes, makeup mouth wash, toothpaste as well as cleaning products.  It is that thing that makes products foam up.  It messes with the skin's microbiome, is an eye and lung irritant, and a hormone disruptor.  If you get acne around your chin, SLS may be one of the causes!

2. Formaldehyde.  This preservative used in many skin care products to prevent the growth of bacteria, is a known carcinogen.  It has been linked to several types of cancers, weaken the immune system and cause allergic reactions on the skin.  Formaldehyde can be found primarily in nail polishes and other nail products, but also in shampoos, conditioners, cleansers and eye makeup.

3. BHA.  A known human carcinogen, butylated hydroxyanisole, or BHA, can cause the loss of skin pigmentation and liver damage, and can interrupt normal thyroid function.  It can be found in skin exfoliants, perfumes and colognes.

4. Parabens.  These are preservatives used to prevent bacteria and are commonly found in moisturizers, shampoo, shaving cream and makeup.  They are estrogen mimicking and problematic, as excess estrogen can disrupt thyroid function. They can be linked to almost every type of cancer, as well as infertility and skin disease.  Some other terms for paragons are: benzylparaben, butyiparaben, propylparaben, methylparaben, ethylparaben,isobutylparaben.  Be on the look out!

5. Phthalates.  This group of chemicals are known endocrine disruptors, linked to insulin resistance, breast cancer and reproductive defects in both men and women, and developmental problems in children.  They are used to increase pliability and softness of plastics can be found in just about everything from nail polishes, lotions, moisturizers, to perfumes and hair spray.  They are tricky additives as in the US it is not required  specifically disclose their inclusion on labels and are often hidden under the "fragrance" umbrella.

6. Petroleum.  In case the question popped up in your head, yes, this is the same stuff you find in motor oil.  The EPA classifies this as a probable cancer-causing carcinogen because it contains 1,4-Dioxane.  In addition, it forms a barrier on the skin, not allowing the skin to breathe or moisture to be absorbed from the environment.  Be aware that it hides behind some other names including liquid paraffin, mineral oil, xylene, toluene and petrolatum.

7. Triclosan.  Technically, this is a pesticide and in addition to being a hormone and thyroid disruptor, is terrible for the environment.  It is used as an antibacterial in soaps, deodorants and toothpastes.

8. Retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, retinoic acid and retinol.  These highly carcinogenic ingredients rapidly oxidizing in sunlight and are common ingredients in moisturizers and sunscreens and damage the skin when applied topically.  You can safely say they are aging-accelerators for the skin.

9. Fragrance.  In the US, the term "fragrance" is a mystery and could mean just about anything.  The FDA allows companies to keep these ingredients hidden to protect them from being copied, but this lack of regulation opens the doors to health anarchy.  According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), the average fragrance has over a dozen "secret" chemicals in it, many of which are linked to hormone disruption and allergies.  

10. Hydroquinone.  This is the active ingredient in skin lighteners.  It decreases the formation of melanin and is a bleaching chemical.  In high concentrations, it can potentially cause ochronosis, a permanent skin pigmentation condition.  Products with this are often paired with toxic mercury, which can cause severe brain inflammation, among many other unwelcome issues.  Steer clear of anything with the words "mercury, calomel, mercurio or mercurio chloride" in the ingredient list.

11. Synthetic Colors and dyes.  Artificial coloring and dyes are made from carcinogenic coal tar, known to irritate and cause sensitivity by depositing heavy metals on the skin. Keep your eyes peeled for anything with FD&C or D&C in it.

What TO look for.

Aloe Vera.

Aloe Vera.

Basically, you want to know that if you ate your skin products, although they may not be pleasant to the taste buds, they would do you no harm.  Why take such a strong stance on this?  Anything you put on your skin is absorbed right into your bloodstream.  As I mentioned earlier, your skin is a reflection of what is going on internally, both physically and psychologically.  If your organs are bearing a heavy toxic load, it will inevitably be reflected in your skin.  

Some of my favorite ingredients:  jojoba, coconut, avocado, olive, almond, argan, and tea tree oils, coconut, cacao, mango and shea butters, apple cider vinegar, raw honey, aloe vera, sea salt and essential oils such as lavender, geranium, palmarosa, sandalwood, rose, frankincense, helichrysum, carrot seed, lemon seed, neroli, sea buckthorn.

And other "fringe" skin secrets.

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1. Photobiomodulation.  As most of us learned in elementary school, light is not simply what it appears to be to the naked eye.  Just as food can be broken down into vitamins and nutrients, each supporting a specific function, so can light be broken down into several colors, each having a different effect on our bodies.  There is research dating as far back as the late 1800's describing the benefits of red light on health.

Light therapy, or photobiomodulation, is basically specific wavelengths of light applied to areas of the body to improve the functioning of that particular affected tissue.  With regards to skin health, I am talking the appearance of scars and boosting collagen production (hello fresh young skin)!

Bonus side note:  This type of therapy also helps with a broad range of ailments from pain, muscle aches, osteoarthritis, and depression.  It boosts testosterone production and even improves eye sight.  The idea is that light, red light in particular, has a profound effect on energy metabolism.  While the other colors of light, ultraviolet, blue, green and infrared, are absorbed by the skin and not able to penetrate it, red light and near-infrared light are able to activate enzymes associated with mitochondrial respiration, in other words, affecting cellular health.  Powerful indeed!  Our favorite device for this type of therapy is the Joovv light.  While not the most pocket friendly piece of equipment out there, given all of its benefits, it is definitely worth the investment. (We have the Joovv light original). 

If you want to learn more, here are a couple of studies to satisfy your inner geek.

2. Derma Rolling.  This basically involves stabbing your skin repeatedly with tiny needles.  Doesn't that sound great?  I've tried it and its actually not painful at all.  Why would you do that?  Micro-needling your skin has been around for several years.  We've talked about hermetic stressors in the past, and this is one you can apply to your skin.  By creating micro-punctures in your skin, you induce an inflammatory response which stimulates cell growth, oxygen and blood flow.  It also a pathway for nutrients to enter the body so that incredible, organic, edible mask, moisturizer and skin serum you just bought can have an even more pronounced effect!  I use the one from Alitura Naturals.  In fact, I love most of their products.  The clay mask and night cream are my absolute favorites.

3. MELT Method 50-Second Face Lift.  This may sound crazy, but let me tell you from personal experience, it works!  Sue Hitzmann, the creator of the MELT Method, developed a quick hydrating treatment that stimulates the cells and relaxes the entire face using the Large Soft Ball from the MELT Hand and Foot Treatment Kit.  She calls it the 50-Second Face Lift.  She has another face lift treatment as well using the MELT Soft Roller.  The entire MELT Method has been a game changer for us in terms of body maintenance and definitely worth checking out.  

4. Prebiotics.  Your skin has it's own microbiome that needs feeding, just like your gut.  Many of the cleansing products out there will strip the skin of its natural oils and good bacteria, starving your skin of the "food" it needs to keep itself healthy.  Skin probiotics encourage the growth of necessary strains of bacteria and can be super helpful in treating conditions such as eczema and rosacea, calming the skin and controlling breakouts.  Our family uses Aleavia body wash and mist.  The lavender is great too, and smells delicious!

5. Contrast Therapy.  This may be the easiest and most affordable treatment for the skin of all.  Showers with alternating between periods of cold and hot water temperatures have significant health benefits, one of them being an anti-aging effect on the skin.  They help boost circulation and the removal of toxins and waste products from the tissues and also have an anti-inflammatory effect.  Other health benefits are increased mental and physical alertness, the upregulation of oxytocin (happiness hormone) and the ability to convert white fat (responsible for fat accumulation) to brown fat (stimulates tissue to burn fat for energy).  There are several ways to do this.  Some ideas: Start with 30 seconds of cold followed by 30 seconds of hot, ending with a cold cycle.  Or, take a normal shower and end with 1-5 minutes of cold, particularly on your head, neck, shoulders and upper back regions.

(Full disclosure:  We are affiliates of a few of these brands listed above.  While we make a little bit of money if you make a purchase using our links, it is at no extra cost to you.  Rest assured, we honestly wouldn't be recommending them if we didn't believe in them)!