Body washes are a fun and convenient way to wash up, but do you know what’s actually in your body wash? With so many options on the market today, it might seem like all sudsy formulas are created equal, but that’s not the case. In fact, depending on the ingredients in your body wash, you may be getting too clean—yes, it’s a thing! Around 1945 (after World War II) began the mass production of synthetic chemicals. In fact, it’s estimated that over 80,000 synthetic chemicals have been produced for at-home and personal use. Today, many of these chemicals have wound up in products we use on our bodies every day; things like shampoo and conditioner, makeup, body lotion, and body wash are all made with synthetic chemicals. The problem is that these chemicals are drying and damaging our skin.
One of the most common synthetic ingredients used in shower products is sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), more simply known as sulfates. You may remember when the shampoo industry took a major turn and started offering sulfate-free shampoos. Those of you who’ve made the switch from sulfate to sulfate-free may have noticed that the sulfate-free free product didn’t get as foamy. That’s because the sole reason that sulfate is added into cleansing products is to create the suds we love so much. While the beauty product industry has made things a bit easier for shoppers by advertising and labeling sulfate-free shampoos, they’ve yet to do so with body wash. Below are a few ingredients to look for when choosing a body wash. Keep in mind, while some may have one/some of the ingredients below, other body washes might include both sulfates and the ingredients below. While it’s best to avoid sulfates, don’t over stress if a body wash includes both.
Alpha and Beta Sugar
Both alpha and beta sugars act as detergents, meaning they cleanse, and are extremely gentle and safe on the skin. Just like many synthetic chemicals, Alpha and Beta sugars lift oil and dirt away from the skin by loosening the surface tension on the skin. The best part? Alpha and Beta sugars are natural, effective, and sensitive-skin friendly.
This ingredient works to restore the skin with oils and fats that have been stripped from the skin while washing. Not only is this ingredient great in body washes, but it’s also a sign that a body lotion will do a good job a moisturizing dry skin. Omega is another natural ingredient that goes above and beyond the moisture abilities of synthetic chemicals
Without getting too into the science aspect of things, every product has a pH level. Ideally, we want the pH level of the product to be the same as the pH level of the skin. Lactic Acid is a natural ingredient that equalizes out the pH level of the body wash, ultimately synching up with the skin. In addition, lactic acid is gentle, yet effective at washing away dry and dead skin cells.