Toxic Beauty


by Samuel S. Epstein, M.D.

Benbella Books,2009


I thought I knew enough about healthy living to be SAFE in my own bathroom!

However, one brief scan through this book showed me I had a lot to learn about some of the  harmful substances contained in the products that I blithely slather on my skin and hair.  I had heard of these insidious chemicals,  some of which can mimic the effects of hormones such as estrogen, suspected of causing all sorts of imbalances in the body, some as serious as breast cancer.  But I never dreamed I’d find them in my house!

I was naïve enough to believe that if I bought my shampoo and toothpaste at a natural foods store, I’d be safe from alarming side effects.  Not so – while reading Epstein’s book, I checked the ingredient list of a few items in the toiletries department of my home, and was surprised to find substances which Dr. Epstein describes in no uncertain terms as carcinogens and/or hormone disrupters.  So don’t be fooled by labels that say “Natural” or “Organic” when purchasing bodycare items.  Take a look at this book instead, and use it to help you wade through ingredient lists to determine which elements are safe for you and your family.

The author’s credentials are extensive and impressive (he’s not a hothead like me when it comes to health….), so be assured that the information presented in this book is well-researched and trustworthy.

Something clicked into place for me while reading this book.  The notable increase in cancer rates in recent years has caused me to continue researching ways to stay healthy.  When I read about study after study implicating commonly used ingredients in cosmetics and personal-care products with cancers of all sorts, I realized that, as Dr. Mercola urges, we can take charge of our health.  A good place to start is with this book.

Purge those parabens!  Say no to nanoparticles in your sunscreen! Move away from mercury in your mascara!

….see, I told you I was a hothead….