So, the U.S. Government has decided to ban plastic, exfoliating microbeads from some of our most beloved skincare and cosmetic products on the market today, and you're totally freaking out, or maybe just confused. You may be asking yourself why this happened, what products you'll use now that this has occurred, or what the deal is with those plastic little beads anyway. I'll describe everything you need to know in this article about the ban, what's banned and why, and what to purchase instead!
First and foremost, what is a plastic microbead?
Microbeads are, just like they sound, tiny plastic beads found in many skincare products usually included to attempt to help with skincare exfoliation. The only issue with this, is that these tiny plastic beads do not dissolve with water, and even if they do are filled with harmful toxins such as parabens, polyethylene or HDPE (high-density polyethylene) aka PEHD and even in some cases BPA. These toxins do not filter through our water system, and instead permeate rivers and lakes, killing fish, filling aquatic animals with toxins, and polluting our water systems in general because they take year to dissipate, if ever at all. If that's not nasty enough to think of, they also pollute, yes, your skin! Plastic isn't something you want to eat, but your skin is your body's largest organ. Everything we put onto our skin is somewhat absorbed into it, and therefore, goes into our blood stream. These microbeads and all of the plastic toxins they contain end up not only polluting our water but our bodies as well, and potentially causing harmful side affects down the road such as irritations, allergic reactions, hormonal imbalances and even some forms of skin abnormalities. As concerns about plastic trash world wide is becoming more and more known, other countries have already banned these products far before us due to their own studies showing the long-term harm of plastic microbeads.
So, you'll most likely agree that this is a positive thing! Good riddance skin and water pollutants! Even some of the largest manufacturers of these products such as Johnson and Johnson supported this change, and were voluntarily phasing out these nasty products all by themselves. Microbeads are set to completely phase out by 2017, so you'll still see some of these plastic filled products lingering around for a while.
You may be in love with a few of these microbead products despite all of this negative information, but you're in luck! This ban now forces these products to use exfoliants that are actually good for the environment, and your skin such as but not limited to: ground fruit seeds, nut shells, charcoal, sugar, oats, coffee, rice, citrus juice, sea salt, baking soda, kefir/yogurt, honey, white kaolin clay, fruit fibers, coral powder, rice bran, shredded coconut, chickpea flower, pumice powder, and Tahitian black sand. WHY use something so damaging to your skin and the environment when these products not only are health conscious but also are packed with vitamins, antioxidants and added skin benefits!
Here are some effective, non-toxic, skin and environment healthy non-microbead products to try out! If you loved some of the products that are set to be banned, you may love these products even more, and you won't have to worry about what they're doing to your skin or the world around you! Enjoy, and have some fun trying out some new, greener, skin care lines!
1.) Juice Beauty: Exfoliating Cleanser. Cleanse & exfoliate with this soap-free formula that will leave your skin with a brighter, more refined complexion. Contains a blend of certified organic refining pineapple enzymes and soothing aloe vera juices infused with dissolving jojoba beads to gently exfoliate and cleanse. Price: around $22.00
2.) AYELET Naturals: Pomegranate and White Tea Facial Cleansing Scrub. This scrub helps get rid of dead skin cells, allows deep penetration of moisture with suitable oils and oatmeal powder, and helps balance skin acidity, all resulting in refreshed and glowing skin. It is made with natural, nurturing ingredients full of vitamins, antioxidants, enzymes, and organic acids. Pomegranate & White Tea scrub is formulated for normal, dry, aging, mature, damaged, dull, and sensitive skin types!! Price: around $24.00
3.) AYELET Naturals: Detoxifying Facial Sugar with Dead Sea Mud Scrub. Invigorating scrub with multiple purposes - Detoxify, Exfoliate, Nurture, and moisturize at the same time!
Designed for normal, dry, mature, stressed, dull skin types. Organic Pure Sugar Cane for a gentle exfoliation, rich in organic acids such as AHA, tartaric, ditric and malic, helps get rid of unwanted dead skin cells, allows deep penetration of moisture. Dead Sea Mud is loaded in Minerals, will help cleanse and detoxify. Price: around $24.00
4.) RAW.SKIN.CEUTICALS: ACNE.Ceuticals Exfoliator. This scrub exfoliates and cleanses the skin without causing dryness or irritation. Green Tea stimulates blood circulation; in turn, encourages healthy cell growth removes dead skin layers and excess oil! There is a blend of lemon and orange peel combined with pure vitamin c in this product, which is gentle compared to most facial scrubs. This scrub is a gentle exfoliant that does not further aggravate already irritated skin. Price: around $15.00
5.) WUNDER BUDDER: Patchouli and Rose Cleansing Grans 2 in 1 Facial Scrub and Mask. Patchouli Rose cleansing grains are a combination of fine mineral clays, freshly ground botanical ingredients, and essential oils blended for normal to dry or mature skin. This gentle cleanser can be used as both a face scrub for eliminating dead, flaky skin and a facial mask to remove toxins without removing precious oils. For for best results, use both ways at once. Price: around $25.00
6.) GREEN PEOPLE: Fruit Scrub Exfoliator. This is a highly effective yet gentle natural exfoliator for instance radiance. It removes dead skin cells to give your skin a glowing complexion, removes impurities, softens skin, retains the skins natural oils, and includes a fresh, uplifting citrus aroma. Skin balancing and free from drying alcohol. Price: around $23.00
7.) SKIN REVOLUTION: Bioferma Enzyme Peel. Yukon – A prebiotic, helping to balance the friendly bacteria on the skin. It improves vitamin absorption, boosts the immune system, aides in the cleansing and removal of cellular debris and is rich in antioxidants.Tremella Mushroom – Aides the skin in moisture retention, skin protection, anti-inflammatory properties and strengthens blood micro-vessels. Asparagus – Rich in unique antioxidants and whole food based Glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that is produced naturally within the body that decreases as you age. Fruit Enzymes – Gently digests dead skin cells from the stratum corneum, reveling a brighter and smoother complexion. They aid in the absorption of other products and ingredients by removing cellular debris. There are no added acids or gritty textures; enzymes are the gentlest form of exfoliation. Your own body heat will activate the digestive abilities of these enzymes for a custom exfoliation each time. Price: around $60.00
8.) KAREN'S BOTANICALS: Exfoliating Cleansing Grains. This is a simple and ancient blend of flower blossoms and powdered grains gently exfoliates and cleans the skin. Unlike harsh and overly abrasive scrubs, cleansing grains are not irritating. Suitable for all skin types, Exfoliating Cleansing Grains are the best choice for sensitive skin. Rosebud and Lavender blossom provides a very light natural scent. Ground oats and brown rice both absorb impurities while gently scrubbing away dead skin. Oats are also very soothing. Lavender is antibacterial and soothing. Roses are a famous emollient, and along with ground oats, making skin feel soft and smooth. Price: around $11.00