Lead and Toxins Found In Cosmetics, Clinique, Estee Lauder & more…

23 Feb

Read an article today that really scared the crap out of me. I found out one of my favorite cosmetic companies (Clinique) puts lead and other toxins into their products, who the hell knew this?! I literally became sick to my stomach reading this. I mean to think about it, any lipstick I wore that came into contact with a person – I mean I may have contaminated them – with LEAD?! It’s really disturbing. I’ve been using Clinique along with a number of OTHER major brands for years. These big companies really do make me feel like just a number, as if they have absolutely no regard for what they do to me or us. Because, hey there are 20 more chicks behind me that would be more than willing to buy their over priced cosmetics right? It’s really sick and twisted when you think about it, that we are all just that expendable to them. Of course; good luck with catching them admitting this.

Let’s talk LEAD

Lead builds up in your system over time and doesn’t go away and the side affects; well I won’t get started but a couple of the funs ones are memory lapses and going crazy, like clinical bat shit padded room crazy. Let’s just say this, we are still wondering where Cancer, carcinogens, Autism, Aspergers (to name a few) may be getting a boost from? I say lets look deeper into what we use EVERYDAY.

Its says “Natural” must be natural right?

Burts Bees of DEATH! With just one application you'll forget ALL your worries ..muahhahahha

If a company claims to be Organic, Healthy, Natural, from the Virgin spring of some sacred donkey’s ass – do your homework. Aveeno, Burt’s Bees (which devastated me!), Herbal Essences and other TOP TOP well known companies are coming under fire for their “Green Washing” campaigns. Claiming that their ingredients are 100% natural when in fact they are some of the biggest offenders out there for putting toxins into their stuff. Also experts are warning about getting any product that lists “Fragrance” as an ingredient. Because under the guise of Fragrance more than 600 nasty little toxins can be hidden. So would you REALLY like to ingest that rat poison today?

Here is a video that will REALLY open your eyes to how far this toxin epidemic has gone. Then read on below for the names of the brands that were proven by the FDA to contain lead.

In 2007 and through December of 2011, the FDA did some tests and here is a list of the BIGGEST “Lead in Lipstick” offenders. But unfortunately this is just the tip of the iceberg:

  • Cover Girl
  • Revlon
  • Body Shop
  • L’Oreal
  • Maybelline
  • Clinique
  • Estee lauder
  • Burts Bees (*cry*)
  • PeaceKeeper
  • Christian Dior
  • M.A.C.
  • Avon
  • NARS
  • Stargazer
  • Sonia Kashuk (of Target fame)
  • Fashion Fair
  • Lancome
  • Almay
  • Mary Kay
  • Jafra
  • Prescriptives
  • Rimmel London
  • Clarins
  • Benefit
  • Gabriel
  • Colorganics ( claimed to be an “Organic / hemp” line)
  • Origins (Estee Lauders “organic & natural” line. Their deceptive moto “Powered by Nature Proven by Science”)
  • Elizabeth Arden
  • Victorias Secret
  • Chanel
  • Iman
  • Bobbi Brown
  • Wet ‘N’ Wild
  • Shiseido
  • Lori Anne

Has your jaw returned from the floor yet? A number of these brands I KNOW I own or have used. Now this is the COMPLETE list of brands for lipstick as updated on Feb 15, 2012 according to the FDA’s website. Yet, there are still offenders across the board with mascara, powers, creams, body washes you name it. However don’t let them fool you if they say well its an “Acceptable” level of lead – there is never NEVER NEVER EVER an acceptable amount of lead EVER! Lead is something that should never even in the smallest amounts be near you let alone on your mouth, being ingested by you. There is a reason that lead paint was banned in 1978 and that was just on the walls, think of what its doing in your system.

Over 400 companies were tested. So what companies are deciding to poison us slowly over time STILL and with what else? Find out more below. You can also find links to actual SAFE cosmetics that aren’t to kill you in the night.

Safe Cosmetics: http://safecosmetics.org/article.php?list=type&type=33

This site is really a godsend and they have some ways that WE can fight back and get involved. I will tell you one thing, I see a video in my future. In a future blog post I will do a review of my findings of TRULY safe cosmetics and even home made beauty remedies/products. I for-see that Craigslist is going to have its fill of “cleaning out the make-up drawer” listings.

For reference:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2104453/Cadmium-mascara-lead-lipstick-arsenic-eyeliner-The-ugly-secrets-beauty-industry-isn-t-telling-you.html 

FDA findings: http://www.fda.gov/cosmetics/productandingredientsafety/productinformation/ucm137224.htm


Breakdowns and Target Heart Rates

23 Feb

So I had a pretty rough last few months, compounded by a nervous breakdown and now; financial issues…oh whoa is me right? Turning back a few months ago, I thought I had a legitimate job offer in another state so I uprooted myself, my fiancé and all my four legged kids then I traveled away only to find out there was no job. Bare in mind this was something that took 6 months to plan  – it was hardly on a whim. But long story short things happen for a reason I believe that but I also believe that you can’t use that as an excuse, were given challenges to overcome and those in turn help us grow. That being said and faced with living in our car we stayed with relatives which in itself was a journey which resulted in me one night just breaking down under the stress and having an anxiety attack.  Several attacks actually; over a period of time, so I returned to where I came from.  Yet as much as I miss my fiancé and my fur babies at the same time a realization comes over you, sometimes you just need that distance to sort out what needs to be done. So that is what I am trying to do. I have a few bills still remaining because we ran out of  our savings completely so other than going on interviews like crazy and applying for jobs I am also just biding my time until an offer comes my way.

I also have started working out again! Oh and does it feel GREAT! I lost touch with myself it seems I was so consumed by the desperate situation we had fallen into. We were living in a hotel because NOTHING worked out like we planned. They even had a gym at the hotel we stayed at but it was covered in black mold because some type of leak that was never corrected. Yes we stayed in one of “those” hotels. Trying to hide animals in a hotel like that isn’t as easy as one would think, but my animals are like my children.

So while staying in this hotel and running through our savings like it was water exploding out of a facet, I applied for every job I could – even a pizza delivery driver. A job is a job I am not judging – but yet nothing.  We finally ran out of money and had to call in a few favors just to drive to our relatives place. Now where they lived was pretty much a farm with no surrounding area to speak of.  To say I was out of my element would be an understatement, and what I think was a major catalyst for my breakdown.  I just felt like I failed utterly, with myself, my family, my fur babies with everything.

My point with this is that we push on, move forward and stand tall. There is always “another way.”  We may not like it, it may take longer than we want but it will be worth it in the end. That being said…me working out again!

So I started my regime again. I am in a spot where I can get to a gym, which is exciting.  So I am starting baby steps because it’s been a while since I’ve really given it my all.  I start with cardio, treadmill or ski machine.

Secrets some Personal Trainers try keep from you

Here’s a secret about the treadmill that I have actually seen some trainers not tell their clients. Why? Well to be honest some are very unscrupulous; not all of them; but some can be and will try to get a few extra sessions out of you but that is for a different blog post so I digress– it’s all about the incline not the speed on the treadmill. That’s the BIG secret! You will work and burn much more fat by going a steady brisk pace and increasing your incline than you would running your butt off for an hour.

Now I am not knocking running your butt off, but unless your training for a serious triathlon then your more than likely risking injury than actually getting into shape.  It just isn’t necessary.

Here is another secret too – if you do Cardio before your weight or machine training you will melt the fat off crazy faster then just doing the weights without Cardio. The reason? Your heart rate is up, your body is warmed up, and it’s in its “Fat Burning” mode.

The target heart rate you see on machines isn’t just there for decoration. It tells you based on your age and weight; an approximate heart rate you need to achieve in order to burn off fat. That heart rate is the beats per minute that your body is pumping. When you hit a certain number your body switches to fat burning mode and thus that’s the key time you want to get on those weights OR increase your incline while brisk walking on the treadmill – whichever your regime is.  Getting to your target heart rate is the key to getting your body into kicking the fat Richard Simmons style!  Also keep in mind when you work out your body releases endorphins – your bodies natural HAPPY pills. So even if you’re having a crap day or last few months like me, it’s like euphoria for your psyche after a good workout. So skip the processed chocolate at the store and get on the treadmill instead. Or you could go for a brisk walk around your favorite mall, perhaps around the neighborhood but don’t forget to get those heart rates up!

Find your Target Heart Rate here: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/target-heart-rate/SM00083

Fat Days – I Poke My Spork at You!

20 Jan

I have those days, those days where you wake up go to the mirror put on what you’ve worn 100 times before, and then for some inexplicable reason you say, “I look so fat today.” However this isn’t like normal I’m fat day move one,  but instead you don’t want to go out at all day. Your confidence is low you even start to dissect how you look from the side, from straight on and, OH GOD, from behind…the bane of your existence.

I have forced myself to go out to, knowing that I was having an off day.  Faking myself into acting nice, as if I am having the best day ever! When I am not. I just end those days feeling so fake and deflated.

Don’t Judge Yourself, Love Yourself and Others:

20 Jan

Have you ever been in a bakery section of a grocery store or in an actual bakery or donut shop and thought, wow are they judging me? I have had that feeling. Even if I was just looking I have felt like someone was watching me. This could all be in the back of my head of course, and it could be me projecting my insecurities onto others.  So unless someone actually came up to me and said something, I wouldn’t know. But I do the next best thing, if I find someone’s glance lingering I say something witty like, “I wish I could get them all “ or I talk about the weather.  To me bringing humor into a situation it can calm it, breaks that tension in the air.

I have also encountered people could even if you say hi to them, run off as if you were going to steal their first born child or something. People watching is an interesting thing, you learn so much about the human aesthetic and it’s a great way to get out. Either shopping or taking a book, its interesting how many things you pick up on and then you wonder to yourself – “Wow did anyone else just see that too?” It’s important to take a moment and appreciate things.  We are so busy running around, just concerned about money or food that we don’t take the time to actually take a deep breath.  I admit I am guilty of it too, I’ve rushed into places thinking I have to get this and this and jet home. I am guilty of not taking the time to stop; look around and think about how big the world really is and how small I am in it.  There is so much more out there than me, and it may seem scary to say, “I am insignificant” but its not that.  It important to realize that I am significant that my voice does matter and so does everyone else’s. You may seem small but just being there in that moment can change so much, just breath, take a step back and enjoy. Relish everything around you because one day you will wish you had that moment back.

DIET – The Four Letter Word

12 Jan

I don’t like the word DIET. People hear diet and they think, to deny, unrelenting, restrict. That really isn’t the case. Diet is really referring to the overall context of what and how you eat. It hasn’t been until recently that some people have turned it into a 4 letter word.  I use diet in the context to eat, but you should never deny yourself.  Even eating healthy you can still have a cupcake, just don’t eat 2 cupcakes,  be reasonable and balance it out. You have 5 meals a day and one of them you sacrifice for a cupcake – then do it.  Just remember you will need to work out a little harder – but you know it will be worth it. J

If it helps – give yourself one cheat day a week. Its important not to deny yourself otherwise let’s face it you, you won’t stick to eating right.  No matter how strong you are it is hard to sit in a restaurant and think okay only salad but then you watch as a slim pretty thing eats a piece of cake – you know you’ve seen it. You know you’ve thought it.  You then turn to the menu and say, that’s it, and you order your usual knowing how bad it is.  But then you regret it later.  You never know though, put yourself in the person’s shoes. What if that was THEIR cheat day, what if that person had just lost a lot of weight. What if they worked out extra hard on the treadmill and that was them rewarding their self. Perhaps they were you a year ago…you just never know and you can never assume or compare yourself to anyone. You are you; they are them. Trust me you may not believe it but perhaps someone is watching you wishing they were you? It may seem odd; it may seem unlikely but what if? What would you say to them? Are they crazy? Or perhaps they see in you what you just saw in that person eating the piece of cake, something truly rewarding and special, a person who will enjoy that piece of cake knowing that they earned it.

Farmer’s Market = Yummy homemade goodness

So yea I love Farmer’s Markets. Especially the little hole in the wall ones that are like little treasure chests of awesome. Some of the veggies can be more expensive than a grocery store chain, but they make up for it in other ways. Like nuts, wow nuts are expensive! A can of nuts can set you back about $7 – $10 in most places.  Nuts are a great source of the GOOD fats you should eat. It’s a good fat because it is natural. That’s why I say don’t deny yourself completely, the body needs sugar, good fats, protein, veggies all the essentials, in order to function properly. Saying no to all sugar for instance can make you over eat something later on. Even fruits have natural sugars in them. So make yourself a list:

Natural Sugars (ex: Apples, Sugar Cane, Honey)

GOOD Fats (Almonds, Walnuts, Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

Protein (Beans, Tofu, Meats, Fish)

Veggies (Whatever is in season – experiment and try something new!)

A great little recipe is my homemade Pico, they is a great and simple recipe especially if your looking to test out your local farmers market goods.

Big Girl’s Homemade Pico

Roma Tomatoes

Yellow or White Onion

Lime Juice

Sea Salt


Compliment on a homemade tacos OR with your beverage of choice.

I’m a Vegan – So Why Am I Fat?!

2 Jan

At 16 I made a decision, I was tired of being over weight and I am an animal lover so I quit eating meat one day cold turkey (hehe pun) and have never looked back since. When I first began being Vegan my weight became more manageable, and I really did lose weight. However I noticed that I needed to balance exercise along with it. Balance is key here, eating right and working out. There is really no way around this.

So why am I fat then?

Because I stopped working out, I did not eat proper meals and I did not eat 5 meals a day. I simply put more food in than I was burning off. There is no simple fix to this; I have stopped working out and fallen into bad habits. I need to be conscious of these bad habits and realize what my weakness is and know that I need to change them for the better. Just because you are Vegan it is not a golden ticket, you can still not eat properly on a Vegan, Vegetarian, ANY diet, there are still sweets, carbs, fats all types of things. Even most junk food is Vegan technically like potato chips, various candies and a number of cheese style foods are really synthetic cheese flavorings and contain no milk. Being Vegan is not an auto fix – it is a start to eating right though. You just have to be strong and remember BALANCE.

Eating 5 small meals a day with a healthy fitness regime, and spacing the meals out to every 3 -4 hours. When I sit and about it I was eating 5 meals a day  (this includes snacks) and not losing but gaining. I especially noticed this when I lost my job. Just sitting and not adjusting my eating habits for my lifestyle OR working out no wonder my body started “preparing for winter” year around!


Hobbies, Crafts and Fun with My Publisher!

20 Dec

So in order to not THINK about food. Its good to focus on exploring hobbies that you either have always wanted to try to never got a chance to get too.  If your not hobby inclined there are a ton of websites where are can scrapbook on line. Meaning you choose the layout, send in the pictures and they can inexpensively create a beautiful album for you.  When your busy then if you are not bored and when you are creating you feel good about yourself.  You can accomplish small things, therefore full filling the need to want to finish something quickly.

Want to find a fun way to waste time? http://www.mypublisher.com/

I have used them to make fun and creative books, even funny silly ones. Perhaps create one of your progress OR a simple book of goals to keep in your pocket. The My mini book is only $2.49 and you can keep it in your pocket. You can create yourself with different sayings or quotes, pictures, or things that inspire you when your away from home.  Look at it this way its your own little book just for you. I love little things like this and its super easy for anyone and the price is just right!

Taking a Friend to Workout – Even a 4 Legged One!

10 Dec

I am a HUGE animal lover. Animals to me are like children, they are smart, protective, and are uber cuties! Depending on the temperature it is outside and the temperament of your four-legged friend, a good way to do some exercise without realizing it is to take them for an extended walk.   Try a dog park, a park, or even a stroll down your neighborhood sidewalk. Take another friend too. You have to walk your little one anyways, so make it a 20 minute walk rather than a 2 minute one. Take some music along too you never know how fast time can fly when your having fun! If you live in a apartment complex that doesn’t have a park (shame on them!) but try walking around or through the entire complex.

Bring a two legged friend to join you too!

Walking and talking burns a lot of calories and gets you in shape too, its slow to moderate steady movements. Even if your friend scoffs at the idea and they don’t want to “workout” just say your taking you dog for a walk and be consistant. Trust me nothing speaks louder than words than when someone actually sees you following through… you never know, you may inspire someone without even realizing it.

Bring a friend or your significant other - you won't even notice the time or the pounds as they melt away 😉

Mister Scale I Dare Challenge Thee to a DUEL!:

6 Oct

The scale – that ominous piece of metal that is sitting there – staring at you.  Plotting against you oh yes! He sits waiting for you, knowing all your little secrets, counting all your missteps just lying in wait knowing…that you will eventually come to him for all the answers. He also knows that if you were to deny him that he would win.

You sit on the toilet starting back at him – a Mexican stand off of sorts. Just like the OK Corral you sit there staring at each other letting the moments tick by… You think I am just going to get this over with but its not that easy is it? You sit with absolution thinking back on your day or week even thinking about that small bite of chocolate you had or that Venti Starbucks you treated yourself too… But what you know HE knows. He is sitting there on the tiled floor clucking his hands together like a villain from a James Bond film waiting for you just to ask that simple little question. “What are you waiting for Mr. Bond?” He asks in his cold tone. You think okay I can be James Bond – just take out the bad guy! But again its not that easy is it? Because you both know you need him – you need to know the answer to your question and he has all the cards.

You remove every stitch of clothing, you finally get the gumption up and you think. I am just going to get this over with – it’s just a set of number nothing more. But that’s a lie, you know they are more; you put reverence behind these numbers.  You put so much behind what Mister Scale tells you that its almost debilitating to know the answer. Just before you step on you think, “Oh god, I forgot to workout Friday.” The scale smiles back at you…that wicked smile…he knows now too.  You then step back, pulling your robe back over you body, you start gripping the sink, taking a deeper breath. You feel vulnerable, you feel weak and you start to regret everything you’ve done. You begin to think about how this is too much work and you start to doubt who you are. But then an epiphany happens. You look at yourself in the mirror; you see it in your eyes. You want this change. It’s not easy, no, but you are stronger than this, this is something you deserve. Screw plateaus, you are not going to let something that silly stop you. No one is going to take that from you –NOBODY! You turn on a dime towards him and he knows that something in you has changed. ”I will not let you win!” “You will not stop me, you will tell what I NEED to know and I will like it no matter what! You have no power over me Mister Scale; DAMN you and your metal parts you will not control me! I have the power to change ANYTHING you throw at me. I am not afraid of you…give me your worst!”

You strip down again in one swift motion, the scale is scared now, he has no recourse he shakes and you step on him. Closing your eyes, taking a deep breath you look down and you wait what seems like eternity for those numbers to appear. The ticking of time, the sound of blood rushing through your ears; its all pounding now. You start to sweat from the adrenaline…the waiting.  But you know no matter what it says, it won’t matter, you are determined to maintain your course.  You start to realize you really meant what you said – it didn’t matter good or bad you are fighting for you. You deserve to be fought for, and you are the warrior of your own destiny. You feel its time; you open your eyes, you look down to see… the scale has no power over you only YOU do and you have the power, will and strength to make anything you want happen. Mister Scale, you smile, you are not my foe here for I simply will NOT let you win because I am better than that AND I deserve this.


1 Oct

Whether you have an iPod, MP3 Player, a cell phone, or your rockin’ a Walkman. Music is such a motivator. Once I get on that treadmill all my excuses melt away when I put on some good music. My music of choice?

Getting started:

For getting my adrenaline up I go for dancey, high bass pop tracks. I admit it Britney, Lady Gaga and Christina are all great for getting you going. Pretty much anything top 40 Pop will do the trick.

Pump it Up:

If I need to challenge myself more I pop on some heavy rock like Metallica or Rammstein. This to me is ideal for i really need to challenge myself while lifting weights, doing presses or any type of leg curl.

Cool down:

Enya – if I am completely done working out. Or slower pop ballads if I plan on going over to get a drink or walking around for a moment. Believe it or not Celine Dion or Leona Lewis are great for low impact working out, very melodic and by the time you done singing the song you have been working out for 3 minutes solid on your arms!

The cool thing about listening to music while working out is that if you really listen to something you enjoy you can get lost in the music and the workout comes and goes just like that. Perhaps make it goal to work out to half a Britney album (if you like Britney) then work up to working out through an entire album. On average there are 12 tracks on an album and they can run about 3 minutes a piece, that’s a 36 minute workout right there!

I am definitely one of those people whose minds goes to 20 different things while they are working out, so its important to me that if I don’t have music then I will watch whats one T.V. See watching T.V. can be healthy! Most gym come equipped with televisions so pop on your guilty pleasure of Jersey Shore (you its true), maybe some of Housewives and make it goal to work out the entire episode – right there that can be an hour :).

So ask yourself, what music really gets you going? If you sing to it in the car or the shower then perhaps working out to it is the next logical step!

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