“There are no cures- nature returns to normal when enervating habits are given up.”
We tend to look at our health and beauty as something that is going to be given to us in the form of a magic pill or product in a bottle. Oh, if only we have the best shampoo, the latest skin technology cream, the right make-up, the best weight loss system, the right medication for X issue then we can have our health and/or be beautiful. We approach our health and beauty completely backwards. The way I see it is that we were given beautiful hair, soft, flawless skin, sweet body odor, and a healthy, thriving body by nature–so long as we live in accordance to its laws. The problem is that we typically don’t, so what all these “beauty” and “health” products are actually doing is masking flaws and ailments that are created because of an imbalance in the body and our insistence to dominate nature rather than live in accordance to her laws (because we are nature). Health cannot be treated topically or from the outside in. For example, If you have cystic acne no amount of face wash is going to cure it, because the cause is coming from inside of you. Remove the cause, and your acne will be cured. I can remember trying hundreds of dollars worth of cleansers, toners, and moisturizers during a time in my life when I had acne on my forehead and often around my jaw line. In the last 4-5 years the only thing that touches my face is water, and my skin has NEVER looked so good. As a matter of fact, I don’t remember the last time I had even one pimple. Natural Hygiene is a philosophy that basically states that when the human body is left alone, and only consumes that which it requires, without excess and toxins (some examples of excess would be like deodorants, hair products, vaccines, alcohol, animal dairy, pharmaceutical drugs, synthetic drugs, processed foods, shampoo, creams, etc) then the organism functions optimally, as it was intended to, and imbalances and disease does not, or rarely occurs. When we stop putting toxicity and non optimal foods in our bodies, and when we stop suffocating our largest organ (our skin) with synthetic chemicals we don’t come across issues like greasy hair, smelly odor, skin issues (all across the board), fowl breath, pain, sickness, chronic disease, cancer, diabetes, heart attacks, digestion issues, ear wax, congestion, thyroid problems, asthma, I could literally go on and on and on and on. Think of it this way: Put chemicals and non optimal foods/substances in and on our bodies= get health out?? This makes no sense. You can’t put in unhealthy, non optimal substances and expect to get a healthy, properly functioning human body out of it. Or does this make more sense?: Put health and that which is made for humans in, stay out of the body’s way, so it can work as it was intended to= get a healthy, properly functioning body. That makes the most sense to me. Simply put, non health and toxic chemicals does not give you health and beauty. Nature gave you health and beauty. Your body was made healthy. Leave it alone. (Note* Unfortunately, as children, we don’t have a say as to what our caregivers are feeding us, putting on us, and injecting us with. But when we know better, we can start to do better for ourselves, and then for our own children. That is how the cycle changes).
I also want to mention that when I am talking about health and specifically beauty, I am not talking about any societal definition of it. Not only does it physically come from the inside, but it does emotionally, too. Meaning, if you feel like you feel good and you think that you look good, then you do.
“We expect to see the sun rise and set, a seed to sprout and grow, water to run downhill, chemical reactions to take place, all in accord with exact law. We do not expect to gather grapes from rose bushes nor figs from thistles. Is there less reason to expect that man should obey the laws of his being? Shall we not expect him to have health in precise ratio to his obedience?”
I have often heard the saying that is some version of, “Beauty is Pain(ful).” I want to put an end to this mindset. If anything that you do for the idea of beauty or health causes you physical pain or something you just plain don’t enjoy then please do yourself a favor and stop. If high heels hurt your feet, don’t wear them. If waxing burns your skin, don’t do it, if applying a bunch of make-up day after day feels like a chore then rethink your strategy.
Just to be clear I am not suggesting that everyone go all natural and stop shaving, and wearing make-up and deodorant. Hey, I love a little mascara! That’s just what ended up happening to me when I got out of my body’s way, but I did it because it felt good. Not because of an idea or persona I was trying to fit into. While I love the natural way, I also love art and for some people, wearing make-up and the like is fun and a way they express their artistic side. What I am suggesting is that Feel > Formula. If we can get out of our own way enough to actually feel what feels good and not run off of the ideas around beauty and health that are sold to us through our culture, media, and advertising then we can have a version of health and beauty that feels good to us because we say it does, not because someone else promised it would.
When I significantly changed my diet and lifestyle to see what actually worked and felt good for my body I found that I looked better and felt better without many of the common products you might think of when you imagine a woman’s bathroom and/or kitchen. Here is a list of things I no longer use and as a result feel healthier and happier without it on (in) my body or consuming chunks of my time:
-make-up (with the exception of a single tube of mascara that sits at the bottom of my bag)
-toxic household cleaners
-pain killers/over the counter meds (Advil, Tylenol, Midol)
Another advantage to all of this is the money I imagine I save now from not buying this stuff anymore. As a teenager and into my early 20’s my morning routine went something like this: Get in the shower, shampoo, condition, lather up with a special soap for the body and then a special soap for my vagina, shaving cream on my legs and shave, get out, brush my teeth, lather my body with lotion, put on cream base, then powder, blush, eye liner, eye shadow, mascara, blow dry the hair, straighten the hair, and throw on some lip gloss. Whew. Personally, I loathed this everyday. But I thought I needed it. My personal care and health stash looks more like this now:
- Coconut oil (for cuts, nics, burns, rash, dryness, etc.)
- Baking soda
- Essential oils
- An occasional bottle of Dr. Bronner’s (sometimes for the body, sometimes for the hands, sometimes for the laundry).
- Natural, fluoride free toothpaste and a toothbrush
- Tea Tree dental floss
- Cloth menstrual pads (there is also the Cup, I just have a personal preference for pads).
- Plant based foods
“Health makes a lot of sense, but it doesn’t make a lot of dollars.”
Don’t be sold healthy and beauty. Embody it from the inside out. Try it out and see what happens when you change your mindset around health and beauty. How will you change when you uncomplicate it and toss your formulas and concoctions out the window? Tell me your thoughts below!