By now we all know we should be washing our hands feverishly. I’m writing this while locked down in my Tel Aviv apartment – I was too scared to deal with the airports in New York City so I stayed here. Like much of the world, we are basically not allowed to leave our apartment for any non-emergency reasons. Unfortunately many of those hand soaps that we are using to protect us from Coronavirus, dirt, and harmful bacteria in general can have serious effects on our hormones – something I’m very familiar with given that I have PCOS and have been struggling to get pregnant with IVF for over two years.
Of course when everything is sold out we need to go with what we have, but ideally if, like me, you are worried about hormone disrupters lurking in every day products, read labels and make sure to avoid parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), and fragrances, all of which can disrupt your hormones. “Fragrance” is a vague word because when it comes to soaps and washes they’re considered “trade secrets” so brands aren’t required to say what’s in them. Many times they include phthalates and other hormone disruptors.
Reading labels can be stressful when the lists are full of lines and lines of 10 syllable words. For those who can’t muster up the energy for this, check for Sephora’s clean label. You can also shop at retailers and websites that focus on clean beauty like Beauty Counter and The Detox Market.