There is a war going on as we speak. No, we do not mean between two rivals, countries, or “terrorist” group, but the war going on between you and your body. Those skincare products that we feel are great for our health, may actually not be. Using all-natural products is the safest option when it comes to applying anything on or inside your body. however the actual war isn’t based off the products we use, it is us. Troy Tyler, co-founder of Portland General Store (PGS) gave me some insight on a few ways society as a whole can reduce the war on our bodies.
Portland General Store is an all-natural apothecary for men and women that encourages people to love their body and to stop making war with it. Tory gave me an ear full about his perspective on what products are the safest to use on your body, and what your body is able to do on it’s own. Here is what Troy had to say.
Your own body has its own systems in order to take care of itself, and we need to work with those systems, to complement them, not antagonize them. Make love, not war! A good example of working with those systems is found in the natural oils present on your skin and hair.Your body’s own sebaceous glands help create a healthy, protective layer of oil on your skin and hair. Many people, in an honest effort to wash away dirt, strip away the too much of the good oil as well. This sets up a destructive cycle, where one’s hair or skin feels dry and vulnerable, leading one to need frequent, heavy moisturizing or conditioning, and then leading one to need even more bathing. The first key is to avoid bathing or washing too much and to avoid harsh soaps. In this regard, I’ll confess that one of my favorite PGS products is our women’s bar soap, Doe. A gentle soap for the body and hair, Doe lathers beautifully and is a joy to use.
Following this, the second key is to make sure that the products you use on your skin complement your body’s own efforts. Our moisturizing products are made from natural and organic oils, great allies with your body’s own oils and known for their added anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. They’re also more friendly to your skin, as they are free from the pore-clogging, petroleum-derived ingredients so common in personal care, like petrolatum, mineral oil, and paraffin wax. When shaving, we men are literally dragging a knife across our skin: To give my face some love thereafter, I use our Professor After-Shave Balm. Loaded with natural oils like camellia seed and hazelnut, the Professor rejuvenates and restores my skin, leaving it smooth and silky, not waxy or greasy.
A final example is found in your body’s own bacteria. For more than a century, we’ve been warring with the 100 trillion or more microbes that live in and on us, our “microbiome”, as the scientists call it. The emergent health field known as medical ecology teaches us to be more careful with antibiotics and disinfectants, to manage our body’s bacteria, not to eliminate them. Importantly, your skin relies on bacteria to produce its moisturizing film. We at PGS believe that our natural products, used in concert with our mantra that you should “Bathe Less, Bathe Better”, are in perfect harmony with this cutting edge medical knowledge. Another of my favorites, our Hunting Camp soap is particularly good for one’s underarms and private parts: The soap’s deep cleaners, including pumice, help keep your body’s bacteria in check, mechanically, thereby reducing the need for harsh antiperspirants and deodorants. It follows then, that even these humble, invisible microbes are your bodies allies: Make Love, Not War!