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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    1,995

    Default For moms who use the Skin Deep database: Do you use products in the moderate level?

    I am almost wishing I hadn't discovered this database (thanks to these great boards), because I'm finding after a little research that many of the products I've been using for myself and my boys are in the moderate range as far as safety is concerned. For instance, I've slathered Desitin on their butts since they were newborns, even preventatively at bedtime to avoid diaper rash. (It's a 6 on the Skin Deep scale. I was so upset to discover this.) I bought a gigantic box of Pampers Unscented wipes at BJs today and discovered that they are rated a 5 (probably because these "unscented" wipes actually contain fragrance--argh!). I used to use the Pampers Sensitive (a 3 rating) but figured my youngest is getting older, so I could probably move to the Unscented version since they are more cost effective. I did that with my first DS. Now I don't know what to do.

    The list goes on and on...lotions, bar soap, hand soaps, sunscreens, flushable wipes for DS1, shampoo, toothpaste--many of the products we use every day contain seemingly dangerous ingredients, according to the EWG's Skin Deep database. So where do I go from here? Do I give up all my favorite, great-performing products and start buying really expensive "ecobrands" that might not work as well but are ultimately safer for our health and the environment? How do you other parents choose health and personal-care products for your family? Do they have to be in the green level on the EWG's database?

    I'm wondering whether I should start a new thread (perhaps one that could be stickied) where parents can list their favorite "safe" products so I can slowly sample some of them and see if I can find items I like as well as some of the less-safe ones I've been using over the years. I would think a list like that in one place would be helpful to many people (perhaps even more so if reviews would be included).

    Anyway, if you've gotten this far, thanks for listening and for any advice you might have.
    Mom to DS1 (3/06) and DS2 (9/08)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Northern VA
    Posts
    9,979

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    I know, it's hard and frustrating at first to get hit with all this information. over time we have completely overhauled everything we buy to non-toxic greener brands for the kids and DH and I.

    Start with the small things like one bottle of their shampoo/body wash. Then when you run out of wipes get something safer. And continue on down that line.

    I feel that it is really worth it for our children who's systems are still developing, who's skin is thinner and absorbs more thru it, and cannot filter out all that junk.

    Step two in my mind is us as adults, as we need to be healthy to care for our kids and be around long enough to play with our grandkids, without the added risk of cancer or other problems.


    Here's what we have in our house (I'm sure I'm forgetting things)
    Avalon Organic Baby shampoo/wash for the baby
    Burts Bees shampoo/wash for DD
    Jason for DS ($1.99 clearance at Babies-R-Us)
    Earths Best wipes and diapers (use one at night) or 7th Gen. wipes
    Earth Mama Angel Baby diaper balm (LOVE this stuff!) or Avalon Organics or California Baby
    Cloth diapers during the day
    Tom's of Maine Silly Strawberry toothpaste (peppermint for DH and I)
    Trader Joes shampoo/conditioner for us adults
    unscented Dove bar soap for us adults
    Alba unscented lotion
    Crystal deodorant
    Everyday minerals make-up for me, and Burt's Bees lip slicks, and Alba lipgloss
    Trader Joes handwash or Dr. Bronners castile soap
    Terrain Sport bug spray
    Purple Prairie Botanicals sunscreen
    Last edited by daisymommy; 07-08-2010 at 11:11 PM.
    Mama to "The Fantastic Four":
    DS 02
    DD 06
    DS 09
    DD 12

  3. #3
    Katigre is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    When I first found the database I was totally overwhelmed and ignored it for a year. Then when I had the mental space, I came back to it and started making small changes at a time. I started with one category and got it all 3 and below and then moved on to another and another until all of our personal care products were rated 2 and below (except my DH's deodorant and my eyeliner). That process took 1-2 years - so don't try to do it all at once. It will be overwhelming (and $$$!).

    1. Start with your kids - the things you put on their skin that stay on their skin and are meant to be absorbed/swallowed. Then do the same for you. This includes sunscreen.

    2. Then move on to bath/shower items for the family and switch to safer ones.

    3. Then tackle a tougher area like make-up.

    4. Finally, if you haven't already, figure out your dishawshing liquid and laundry detergent and household cleaners - those things leave residues that get on our skin and food and I think it's important that they be safe. I don't have to worry about toxic poisoning if my DD gets into our cleaning supplies because none of them have harmful chemicals. (I still keep them out of her reach, but the peace of mind is very very nice - a few weeks ago she got into the toothpaste and started eating part of a tube. But it was all natural/no fluoride toothpaste so no poisoning worries).
    Mom of 4: Boy (10), Girl (7), Boy (4), Girl (2)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
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    Northern VA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katigre View Post
    4. Finally, if you haven't already, figure out your dishwashing liquid and laundry detergent and household cleaners - those things leave residues that get on our skin and food and I think it's important that they be safe. I don't have to worry about toxic poisoning if my DD gets into our cleaning supplies because none of them have harmful chemicals. (I still keep them out of her reach, but the peace of mind is very very nice - a few weeks ago she got into the toothpaste and started eating part of a tube. But it was all natural/no fluoride toothpaste so no poisoning worries).
    Mama to "The Fantastic Four":
    DS 02
    DD 06
    DS 09
    DD 12

  5. #5
    gatorsmom is offline Pink Diamond level (15,000+ posts)
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    Oct 2003
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    I agree with the previous posters. It takes time but I'm slowly weeding out the bad stuff. And it isn't easy because I may try new, safer products and hate them. So, I have to go back to the database to find another safe option to try.

    Since I don't have a ton of time to really focus on this, I've researched different options as I finish my questionable ones (unless I know a product is particularly unsafe). So, when I finish my hand lotion, I look on the database to see what safer options I should try to buy to replace my previous hand lotion, or if mine turned out to be safe. Little by little, we are using better and better products. That's how I'm changing over. I just don't have the time to sit down and research every product I use all at once. I think it would take days!
    "People are made for happiness. Rightly then, you thirst for happiness. Christ has the answer to this desire of yours. But he asks you to trust him." -St. John Paul II

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Florida
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    4,893

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    I switch by sales. I Biokleen products and switched all of our cleaning products out for this brand. They make everything I need and I know I can clean while the kids are around and they can help. I found and excellent sale at drugstore.com and bought everything.

    I stick with California Baby for all the kids stuff. J&J's ingredients were horrible and it irritated me that this was used in hospitals.

    There are some "bad" products I still use becasue they work for me and I haven't found anything "green" that works the same. DH and I use spray sunscreen and in a pinch I use it on the kids. I still use regular Pampers and wipes. I can only find 1 foundation that matches my skin tone and my shampoo/conditioner is whatever is on sale.

    Don't get overwhelmed. I did in the beginning and I felt if I didn't change that very second I was harming may family and being a bad parent. The best thing is the education and then an action plan. Your goal is to decrease the "bad" products and slowly introduce better and healthier alternatives.
    Jenn
    M - my 7 yo ADHD/anxiety monkey.
    TT - my 4yo tiny terror.

    "Swimming is not a sport. Swimming is a way to keep from drowning. That’s just common sense!" "I don’t have a fear of heights. I do, however, have a fear of falling from heights." “No comment” is a comment."
    "The reason they call it the American Dream is because you have to be asleep to believe it." "Atheism is a non-prophet organization."
    - George Carlan



  7. #7
    Katigre is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    OP, what would probably help is if you break down into categories what you are using in your house right now so people can list what they use instead . Especially helpful if you say what you are using right now or what is important to you in a given product.

    Here is what came to mind for what we use in our house...

    Kids Toothpaste
    Adult toothpaste
    Deodorant
    Shampoo
    Conditioner
    Facial wash
    Moisturizer
    Body wash
    Kids' shampoo/soap
    Kids' lotioin
    Diaper rash cream
    Diapers
    Diaper wipes
    Makeup (list all kinds you use)
    Lip balm
    Hair styling products

    Cleaning:
    Dish liquid
    Dishwasher detergent
    Laundry detergent
    Fabric softener
    All purpose cleaner
    Glass cleaner
    Toilet bowl cleaner
    Floor cleaner
    Bathtub cleaner
    Mom of 4: Boy (10), Girl (7), Boy (4), Girl (2)

  8. #8
    essnce629's Avatar
    essnce629 is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Default

    Yeah, I'd definately start with the kids stuff first and then slowly switch things out of your own as you finish things off. I still have some things rated as moderate that I can't find safer options of that I like-- like my shampoo and conditioner (both rated 5). My toothpaste is rated 3 and my deodarent is a 4, but I'd like to change those soon.

    All the stuff I use on DS1 and DS2 are rated safe. We use cloth diapers full time.

    I use Everyday Minerals makeup. I'm trying out the Purple Prairie face soap, toner, and moisturizer right now.

    For cleaning I pretty much use a 50/50 vinegar and water solution for everything (kitchen/bathroom counters, kitchen table, stovetop, mirrors, highchair). I use Borax to clean the toilet bowl and the BabyGanics bathroom spray for the shower and tub. I use 7th Generation dish soap. I hate fragrances so everything is unscented.

    I just switched to the Method dishwasher tablets and really like them. They seem to work just as well as the Cascade Complete I was using.
    Latia (Birth & Postpartum Doula and Infant Nanny)
    Conner 8/19/03 (My 1st home birthed water baby!)
    Parker 5/23/09 (My 2nd home birthed water baby!)

  9. #9
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    Jun 2008
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    The coolest place in the state of AZ!
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    Here's what we use: Thanks pp for the list!

    Kids Toothpaste- Nature's Parade (fluoride free)
    Adult toothpaste- Xyliwhite (ff)
    Deodorant Nature's Gate or Weleda Spray
    Shampoo For DD Nature's Baby, for me BWC or Giovanni
    Conditioner ""
    Facial wash-Pevonia
    Moisturizer- Josie Maran Argan Oil or Devita, 100% Pure Eye Cream
    Body wash-Dr. Bronners
    Kids' shampoo/soap Kiss my Face unscented Olive or Giovanni
    Kids' lotion - Avalon Lavender
    Diaper rash cream- Organic Jojoba Oil or Burt's Bees
    Diapers Cloth
    Diaper wipes Earth's Best
    Makeup (list all kinds you use) Jane Iredale for facial stuff, Honeybee Garden's Mascara, Korres or Zoya gloss
    Lip balm- Yes to Carrot's
    Hair styling products John Master's Organic Bourbon Vanilla Texturizer

    Cleaning:
    Dish liquid 7th Gen
    Dishwasher detergent Citradish or Biokleen(BK) or Method Grapefruit tabs
    Laundry detergent BK
    Fabric softener none
    All purpose cleaner BK or 7th Gen
    Glass cleaner Vinegar
    Toilet bowl cleaner BK Soy Scrub
    Floor cleaner Vinergar
    Bathtub cleaner 7th Gen or Ecover
    Mama to Bumbee. A VERY busy girl...
    Making me a VERY Mama.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    California
    Posts
    818

    Default

    I could've written the same post, as I just discovered the website myself. Thanks for everyone's suggestions! I will look into BioKleen.

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