Category Archives: health

I tried a “weird” beauty product.

It was only a few posts ago that I was ranting and raving about ridiculous and gross beauty treatments, and here I am about to tell you how I used something that sounds pretty weird and maybe a little gross. The irony is not lost on me.

I was in the drug store a few days ago desperately looking for some kind of treatment for my frizzy, dried-out locks. I’m way overdue for a haircut and my ends start to get tangly and frazzled after a while. I’m very particular about what I use in my hair – I follow a modified curly girl method, which basically means that I don’t use any products with sulfates or silicones in them. I also try to stick to organic-based products when I can. Because of this, looking for a new conditioner can be hard since silicones are a major component of most conditioning products.

Finally I picked up a packet of Hask Henna Placenta Hair Treatment. I was under $2 and had no silicones, so I figured why not?

I know what you’re probably thinking. Placenta? In your hair? Gross! I thought that too, but my hair was feeling desperate. I couldn’t run my fingers through it without painful tangles and the damage from constantly pulling it up to fight summer heat was getting bad.

And once I got passed the “ick” factor, I was blown away! The package recommends that you leave the treatment in for at least ten minutes and heat it with a blow dryer or wrap your head with a hot towel. I used a blow dryer before rinsing the conditioner out and letting my hair air-dry. My hair dried soft, frizz-free and with no tangles! I was made a believer.

BUT! Today I did a little Googling and found that the use of placenta in hair products has been linked to breast cancer or premature development in young girls. This site lists it as one of their top ten products to avoid. So now I’m torn. I think I’ll consider using the Hask conditioner as a once-in-a-while treatment when my hair is in dire straits and stick to more conventional products for more regular hair care.

The things we do for great hair…

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Quickie: You’re not as fat as you think!

A study conducted in London has found that the average person’s body image is seriously distorted:

Scientists have discovered that the body image a person projects in their own brain is “massively distorted” and can be up to two thirds wider than it is in reality. The brain’s own “body model” is also around a third shorter than the body actually is, according to the study at University College London.

The scientists who conducted the study think that this may offer new insights into those affected by eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia.

I was sort of comforted reading about this study as I’m prone to anxiety about my weight and body image. I was a very skinny kid. Adulthood came along and these days I’m… not so skinny. I spend way too much time worrying about my weight and the size labels inside my clothes. The image perpetuated by the fashion industry (remember when we talked about this?) certainly doesn’t help when we’re surrounded by images of an “ideal” most of us will never meet. It makes sense to me that so many of us are walking around with a mental self-image that doesn’t match the reality when we’re constantly comparing ourselves to those ideals.

But next time you look in the mirror and feel like you’re having a “fat day,” take a deep breath and be a little kinder to yourself – it’s not as bad as you think.

Quickie: Here Comes the Sun

Sun protection is important year-round, but once the weather warms up we all spend more time outside. Gone are the days when brown, tanned skin was in style – the new tans are fake and sometimes unfortunately orange. But whether you choose to fake bake or embrace the pale, you need to protect your skin from sun damage!

Most facial moisturizers and some foundations contain a sunscreen now. But the sunscreen in that facial moisturizer and foundation may not be enough and the rest of your body needs protection too.

Confession: I don’t wear sunscreen every day. I use a facial moisturizer with SPF, but I don’t apply sunscreen anywhere else unless I’m planning to be outside all day. And with my fair Irish skin I really should. The truth is, almost everyone is making mistakes with our sun protection.

Allure Magazine explains the nine biggest sun-protection mistakes most of us make every day. Did you know that your face should get about a nickel-sized amount of sunscreen every day? And that your scalp still needs protecting? And that certain medications can increase your sun sensitivity? I didn’t either until I read this!