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Why I Changed Up My Skin Care Regimen After Going Paleo

Louise Hendon | November 13
Why I changed my skin care regimen after going paleo

Why I Changed Up My Skin Care Regimen After Going Paleo

I’ve never been big into makeup, not for any health or ideology reasons. It was simply because I had no idea how to apply make up!

Even now, my ventures into makeup typically make me look like a panda!

But I wasn’t ever very careful about what I did apply to my skin (like soaps, moisturizers, deodorant) – I thought the stuff everyone buys at the store was fine (at least from a health perspective). After all, how much difference could there be to my health?

Of course, after going Paleo, I started to question everything. Other Paleo bloggers (like Liz Wolfe and Hayley Mason) I followed started talking about using more natural makeup products or oil pulling or making their own face masks.

And so the information gradually seeped in.

But it wasn’t until just 1 year ago that I started really doing it myself. So, what changed?

My Skin Got Worse

I had been using the birth control pill for over 10 years, and I finally felt that it was time for my body to stop ingesting it – after all, I had cleaned up my diet so much and everyone’s talking about getting your hormones in balance, so why would I still be feeding my body huge amounts of external hormones daily!

However, my face started flaring up dramatically shortly after this (I obviously don’t know if stopping the pills was the cause, but I had been eating Paleo for quite a while already without anything even close to this happening). It got to the point where I was ashamed to leave the house and I really wished I knew how to apply makeup to cover it up. And I definitely hated any photographs of me! I had never experienced anything like it in my life.

I didn’t know what to do at the time except that I had to change something!

Video – How I Improved My Skin Clarity and What Paleo Skin Care Products I Use

If you prefer watching my video, then click below to watch, or read below to find out the information.

So I made 3 changes to help clear up my skin:

1. I drastically reduced my stress levels (I quit my stressful NYC law firm job) and started concentrating on getting 8+ hours sleep every night (it’s taken me over a year to get close to this). I figured that if my hormones were out of wrack, then getting more sleep and rest would allow my body to put it back into balance since your body produces various hormones during sleep.
2. I started removing skin products that had non-natural chemicals in it. I already knew that your skin absorbs chemicals as if you had swallowed it, so feeding my skin better products must surely be a good thing. (And I’ll describe the products I started using below.)
3. I started taking more and more probiotics (this is the one I’ve been taking for the past year). I had heard Chris Kresser talk about the gut-skin connection for years, so I figured that there couldn’t be any harm in fixing my gut some more. I also started drinking kombucha, fermented coconut water, and eating kimchi and sauerkraut.

prescript assist soil based probiotics

I’m not saying there was a huge amount of science to this, but I basically applied some of the concepts I had learnt in Paleo to this new health problem I was encountering.

After all, reducing stress, sleeping more, removing chemicals, and getting better gut bacteria are all aspects that Paleo emphasizes anyway. My skin issue just gave me extra incentive to focus on them.

And it worked!

The results were slow, but over time my skin improved (I wish I had taken photos along the way, but I really hated any photos of myself). Today, there are still a few small bumps, but nothing too noticeable.

I don’t really like selfies, but this is one below to prove to you how good my skin looks today (taken with an iPhone5 camera without any processing).
Louise Hendon skin care

The Natural Skin Care Products I Switched To

While sleep and stress may be tough changes for you to make, taking probiotics, and switching your skin care products aren’t that difficult. Here are some of the really easy switches I made!

Paleo Skin Care – New Soaps

While it might be optimal to rarely if ever wash your hands (see this article), I’m not quite there yet.

So, I opted for more natural soaps. I like the Whole Foods 365 Glycerin Soaps (unscented). The only ingredients are: saponified coconut and/or palm oil, vegetable glycerin. And it’s really really cheap!

The photo below is of the rosemary mint flavor:

whole foods soap

I also like Dr Bronner’s magic soaps (I love the smell of this lavender one and the peppermint liquid soap is great for showering – it smells amazing!).

Dr bronner's magic soaps

Paleo Skin Care – New Deodorant

It never occurred to me how many ingredients (including aluminum) were in my deodorant!

For example, the popular Secret Invisible Solid Powder has these inactive ingredients: cyclopentasiloxane, stearyl alcohol, C12-15 alkyl benzoate, PPG-14 butyl ether, hydrogenated castor oil, petrolatum, phenyl trimethicone, talc, cyclodextrin, mineral oil, fragrance, behenyl alcohol.

I don’t know about you, but if I ate some of that deodorant by accident, I’d run to the emergency room immediately because those things do NOT look good to go into my body. But yet, we’re happy to apply them to our skin and let them absorb into our bodies day after day after day!

But there’s an easy alternative, and that’s what I switched to.

primal life organics pitstick lavender

This is the PitStick (made by Primal Life Organics), which has the following ingredients: Organic coconut oil, baking soda (aluminum free) or organic arrowroot powder, and organic pure filtered beeswax.

Yep – you could eat it for energy in an emergency!

My favorite is their lavender flavor – you smell really good with it on.

Paleo Skin Care – Face Wash and Moisturizer

One of the easiest things to use is coconut oil or olive oil to wash your face daily. It takes a bit of getting used to (I know using oil to wash your oily face sounds crazy – but it really really works!).

But you have to give it 2 weeks – it’ll take about that long for your skin to readjust and stop producing so much oil.

And the best part is you won’t need a moisturizer afterwards!

Paleo Skin Care – Toothpaste

primal life organics toothpowder
You can get one of the Peppermint Primal Toothpowders from Primal Life Organics or if you’re feeling adventurous, you can make your own toothpaste – take a look at my video below:

Makeup Remover

The only makeup I still wear is eyeliner, and to remove it every night, I used to use the Neutrogena Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover or else the L’Oreal one. But then I found that melted coconut oil or olive oil is really effective at removing makeup, even really hard to remove eye makeup!

So, now I travel with condiment cups filled with coconut oil – I can eat it if I’m hungry, I can use it to wash my face, I can use it as a body moisturizer, and I can use it to remove my makeup. If nothing else, it’s decreased the number of skin care products I have to take with me on vacation!

Here’s a photo of my condiment cup:
travel case for coconut oil

So, that’s my list – what’s yours?

What “better” skin care products are you using? Let me know in the comments below.

Sondra Harcourt - November 13

I love Neways products. The Cancer Prevention Coalition has recommended this company and monitors all new products. They even have safe packaging. Having once suffered from breast Cancer I’m hyper-cautious. The words “contains no known or suspected carcinogens” are the criteria for me.

Leah Lawhern - December 19

I use the oil cleansing method on my face. I do a mix of a 1/4 of the mixture castor oil and 3/4 olive oil. I like how you just rinse it off with water rather than taking the wash cloth and gently rubbing the oil off your face. I think I may try that instead it seems more gentle and I have sensitive skin. Have you used the wash cloth to get the excess oil off before? I would like to know so I can make my decision to use it or not. Thanks! ^_^/*

    Louise Hendon - December 19

    I use warm water to wash it off and then use a dry towel to take off anything else (but because the water was warm, the oil comes off very easy).

      Leah Lawhern - December 25

      Ok thanks! I will try it and see how it goes. By the way I love your website and have learned some great stuff from it!

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