Tips to a toxic-free lifestyle with my friend, Kim!
This newsletter was born as a way to identify the infinite definitions of health for everyone. As a proud millennial, I believe our health is a practice that is rarely perfect and requires flexibility. There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to physical and mental health, and for this, I am grateful every day. If there was one formula, everyone would be the same, and that my friends - would be a crime!
Do you know what else is a crime? The number of toxins our bodies are exposed to every day due to the extraordinary amount of metals and chemicals in common products, food, and even air.
The idea of non-toxic living has been around since the beginning of the 21st century. With the rise of research and increased media attention in recent years, it has seen an increase in popularity leading to more fiscal votes for cleaner products.
If you're wondering why toxins are harmful in the first place, you're not alone. Our bodies are equipped to break down toxins naturally, but not to the degree modern-day life has propagated them. Dr. Rose Kumar, Founder of the Omani Center for Integrative Medicine compares toxins to dirt in an engine.
An engine cannot run well with dirt in it because its parts cannot make contact with one another. Our bodies can be likened to a biological engine. The collaboration and communication between the body’s four major systems is critical to its proper functionality. These four systems are the endocrine or hormonal system, the immune system, the liver, and the gut. If any of these systems is compromised, the "bio-engine" will not run as well. Toxins and hormone disruptors are like dirt in the engine of the body which interferes with the communication and collaboration between its major systems.
I'm no expert in this field, so I happily phoned a friend.
Meet Kim Hornbeck
Kim Hornbeck was in partner marketing strategy for American Airlines for six years when she realized she could take her talent to add more value to her family and our future planet. She is now a Director with Beautycounter, a company that has in many ways pioneered the non-toxic beauty industry. She also paired her knowledge in marketing and toxic-free living by starting her own company. It’s called Easy Clean Swaps, which provides simple services to maximize a cleaner lifestyle through attainable approaches. We share the philosophy of how your health is a practice where flexibility is required. Ironically, we met at yoga.
Read on to see her simple solutions and mindful messages.
Q: Why is it important to live a more non-toxic life than most of us probably are living?
A: The number one reason is for your overall health. We're fortunate for a lot of studies that have now been done in many industries so it is easier than ever to see if a product we use every day is made with a known carcinogen or endocrine disruptor. We can now use an app to see a product's safety so we are empowered to make a decision on whether to buy or not.
Q: What type of advice do you have for men or women who have partners who don't understand the value of toxic-free products?
A: Just buy it for them! Present alternatives. Luckily many clean products now are high-performing. If it performs, it's easy for them to make the decision to choose the alternative. Today, there are fewer and fewer excuses to not find a high performing product.
Q: What’s the first step you encourage others to take to reduce toxicity?
A: My top recommendations below.
Start with what covers the most real estate - your skin! Switch to clean body lotions, sunscreen, body wash...etc.
Take your shoes off when you walk in your home
Replace your non-stick pans with cast iron or ceramic
Slowly switch plastic products to glass
Don't heat with plastic - it will leach!
Make-up - powders can be inhaled and the products sit on the skin all-day
Ditch the dryer sheets for wool balls, adding essential oils for preferred scents
Download the EWG's Healthy Living app to see where your favorite products rate in terms of toxicity. Do your best to stay within the 1-3 range.
Q: When it comes to toxins, do you extendgrace in any specific area? We can’t be perfect.
A: Yes! Swap products one at a time, run out of one product, replace with a safer version, and avoid products with "fragrance." The ingredient "fragrance" is considered a trade secret and can hide tons of ingredients that will never be disclosed to you.
Q: What are the least expensive options to remove harmful chemicals in your life?
A: Open your windows to bring in cleaner air and take off your shoes when you walk in the door!
Q: If there was no financial burden, what would be the biggest investment you would suggest for someone who wants to live a more toxic-free life?
A: Furniture, mattresses, and flooring! There is a tremendous amount of chemicals in these items to help preserve them and make them flame resistant. Many of those chemicals are harmful to our health and we breathe them in every day.
Q: What are your favorite products right now?
A: Here is my top list.
Branch Basics (contains one concentrate)
Dr. Bronners (Castille Soap)
Equilibria CBD (women-owned & geek out on heavy metal testing)
Beautycounter (Countertime Line, Overnight Peel)
Q: What are people most surprised about when Easy Clean Swaps works with them?
A: How easy it is! Leaning on others, and asking for help makes it seem more methodical.
Q: How can people work with you and who is your ideal client?
A: Visit easycleanswaps.com or on Instagram @easycleanswaps! I help anyone who is looking to remove toxins from their home, one swap at a time. My methods are based on budget too. My ideal client is anyone who wants to make a change but is too overwhelmed to know where to start.
It was refreshing to hear that Kim also remains confident we will see a 100% shift in personal care. She says, "It's a segment that is successful if they choose to add it in. It's a consumer-based industry, and people continue to vote with their dollar."