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Natural Skin and Hair Care doesn’t have to include harsh soap and chemicals.
By Bettina Rasmussen

Did you ever consider why you spend so much time and money on your hair and skin? Do you have to add conditioner, hair masks, and hair gel in order to prevent fizzy hair? How much time do you spend applying lotion to your dry legs, arms, face and hands?
What if I told you that you could spend less money and time by avoiding conventional soaps.

Our skin is our largest organ and plays an integral role in keeping us healthy and comfortable. It protects us from disease and injury and helps regulate body temperature, therefore keeping our skin in great shape is vital to maintaining overall health.

Soap destroys the skin’s acid mantle,(a very fine, slightly acidic film on the surface of human skin acting as a barrier to bacteria) and disrupt the pH of your skin, dehydrate and can make the skin itchy and dry increasing the chances of wrinkles and reduce the body’s own natural moisturizing ability.

Healthy skin pH is around 4-5, which is slightly acidic, but most conventional soaps have a much higher pH, sometimes as high as 11. The soap interrupts the skins PH balance which causes your body to produces excess sebum to restore its natural pH level. The soap residue and continued usage ensures the disruptive pH is maintained. The end result is that skin can become too oily and over time the damage to our skin’s acid mantle causes dryness, itching, irritation, and inflammation. All this can also worsen skin conditions such as acne, eczema, dermatitis, and rosacea.

Hair contains a high level of a protein called keratin. Soaps can damage the keratin which makes hair brittle, dry and prone to damage. It can also make hair more porous allowing chemicals and pollutants to penetrate hair and causes dry fizzy damaged hair. Remember your scalp is part of your skin and will react to the shampoo by over producing sebum (a natural oil constantly produced by your sebaceous glands) causing your hair is either too dry after a wash or too oily after a couple of days. The PH imbalance causes dandruff and either overly dry or oily scalp.

The Americans spend on average $323.00 a year on skin care products. What if I tell you that your dry, flaky skin, itchy scalp, fizzy hair could be avoided if you changed your soap and washing routine?

You may have seen the advertisement for Shampoo Bars or heard people saying that they haven’t washed their hair for years. You properly have wondered what all this is about.
First of all, let me tell you that we are all unique, our hair, our skin our chemistry and lifestyle. Therefore, educating you about the biology of skin and hair should help you find the best solution for yourself.

You will find that as soon your skin and hair have reached a natural balance you don’t need to do very much. You may only wash your hair once or twice a week and feel clean in between, a quick shower with a natural plant based soap bar will be enough to freshen up without leaving your skin dry and itchy.

Shampoo Bars are made differently and in my experience works best for people with thick fizzy and hard to deal with hair or graying hair. A fizzy, curly hair can with the right Shampoo Bar become soft and manageable because the oils in the Shampoo Bar moisturize the keratin in your hair.

Hair Wash from Trader Joes feels like a conditioner and leaves your hair clean and manageable and is preferable for people with straight hair. You don’t have to use it often unless you have been sweating or collecting dust or dirt.

A Natural gentle plant based conditioner can be used to rinse out dirt and leave your hair fresh.

Milly & Silly carry an amazing chemical free shampoo and body wash

Order here Recycle-Reuse-Sustainable-Products (directlyfromnature.com)

When shopping for plant based soaps, shampoo bars, lotions etc. you are more likely to find them in health food stores or boutiques selling handmade soaps.

When reading the ingredients avoid these ingredients
sodium lauryl sulfate
sodium laureth sulfate
synthetic coloring agents (FD&C Yellow, etc.)
artificial fragrance

These delicious ingredients are much better for you:
Olive Oil
Coconut Oil
Essential Oils
Neem Oil
Calendula Flower Extract
Shea Butter

Jojoba Oil
Sesame Oil
Sodium Lactate
We got some suggestions for you Moisturizer (directlyfromnature.com)

How about deodorants?
The same goes for deodorants, but luckily there are good brands that make deodorants from natural ingredients Crystal and Herban Cowboy are my favorites. Not only do they smell nice but they also work, leaving you smelling fresh and nice all day long, and it goes for you guys too.

In addition to external care you can support your skin and hair by trying to manage stress and emotional upheaval.
Drink 8-10 glasses of water daily
Get enough Omega-3 in your diet
Exercise 4-6 days a week
Eat your vegetables, whole grains, and fish
Vitamin B Complex or vitamin B rich foods to support your skin and nails

How do you get started and what to expect?
It can take a little while for your body to adjust to the soap and chemical free lifestyle so give yourself time to adjust.

If you feel your hair has soap build up or you are suffering from dandruff you can rinse your hair in apple cider vinegar, the same goes if you get hold on to a Shampoo Bar that is too moisturizing. Shampoo Bars that are too moisturizing for your hair works wonders on the skin so don’t throw them out.
When you find the perfect way of cleaning your hair allow a few washes to feel different before you get the amazing realization that you love how your hair feels and not feeling the need to wash your hair very often. You will be able to go a longer time between needing to wash your hair and you no longer need to use conditioners, gels or other hair products to manage your hair.
The same goes with your skin, although you use a good plant based soap bar you may still feel dry. The best solution is plain oil such as almond oil, Jojoba Oil, Avocado Oil, Argan Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Coconut Oil or a combination. Be creative and make your own, add your favorite essential oils.

Natural Skin and Hair Care doesn't have to include harsh soap and chemicals (directlyfromnature.com)