The Most Vulnerable Part of Your Body For Chemical Absorption

The Most Vulnerable Part of Your Body For Chemical Absorption


This week, Mary decodes: Aluminum in dry shampoo.


Most of us know that aluminum in antiperspirant is a huge risk because it works to blocks your pores, preventing you from sweating, which traps toxins inside your body. However, did you know that many conventional dry shampoos also contains aluminum? If aluminum starch octenylsuccinate is on the ingredient list in your dry shampoo, you might want to look for an alternative and I explain why what you put on your head is one of the most important considerations.

Based on new pharmaceutical research for topical application of drugs, studies have found that your scalp is a weak spot on your body for protecting against chemical penetration.  The scalp and the forehead show the highest absorption rate for drugs and chemicals (approximately four times greater the absorption rate than your forearms). Follicular penetration allows drugs and chemicals to enter the body with much great ease.





You’ll find that many conventional dry shampoos use aluminum starch octenylsuccinate in the formulation, as it is highly effective at absorbing excess oil and sweat. With its anti-caking agent, it’s also used in aerosol cans to prevent the dry shampoo formulation from blocking the nozzle.




What is aluminum starch octenylsuccinate?

This ingredient is an aluminum salt of chemically modified starch. This synthetic powder-like ingredient is used as an absorbent, thickening agent and anti-caking agent in cosmetics, such as dry shampoo, foundations, eye shadows, face powers and sunscreens.

Based on scientific studies, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel has indicated that Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate is safe in cosmetic formulations, as long as established limitations imposed on heavy metal concentrations are not exceeded.



Although studies have not demonstrated that aluminum starch octenylsuccinate is harmful in cosmetics, the area in which this ingredient is applied on should be noted. With dry shampoo, the problem is that this heavy metal infused starch is sprayed directly onto your hair follicles – the weakest spot on your body for protecting against chemical penetration.

With our overnight dry shampoo, it is formulated without aluminum, aerosol gases, and is made up of 100% natural ingredients.

Think carefully about the ingredients that you place on your scalp and forehead. We are learning more and more about the body through research. The PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE should apply to hair care products based on this new information.

Click here to read more on aluminum in your antiperspirants and the harmful effect it has on your underarms.



overnight dry shampoo


overnight dry shampoo


5 Most Common Sources of Toxic Heavy Metals

5 Most Common Sources of Toxic Heavy Metals

heavy-metal-toxicity-detox-marissaI’m Marissa, the Wellness Manager at kaia naturals. I live a very health and wellness focused lifestyle and on the outside, it looks like I have it all together. However, the truth is I’ve suffered from many years of health issues that have lead me to live this lifestyle. Excruciating migraines, insomnia, unbearable fatigue, mysterious rashes… the list goes on.



My doctor wasn’t able to give me answers, and it wasn’t until I took my health into my own hands that I started to make headway. Although not all questions have been answered, through my own research and working with functional medicine doctors (think naturopaths, traditional Chinese medicine doctors and the likes) I have learned a ton! Follow me as I share what I learn every week, and don’t be afraid to ask questions and share your experiences with me.



I’ve been dealing with a lot of headaches, fatigue, and joint pain… which led me down a research rabbit hole on the internet and I couldn’t help but ask “could HEAVY METAL TOXICITY be making me sick?” It turns out that a lot of the things I do every day were actually exposing me to heavy metals. Most people don’t even realize that they are being exposed to heavy metals, but you’d be surprised.

Did you know there may even be arsenic in your rice?!





Fish is a common source of mercury, and you guessed it… I eat a lot of fish! Mercury gets into our waterways, through coal burning manufacturing plants for instance, and affects the fish that way.

FACT: Species of fish that are longer-lived and larger tend to have higher levels of mercury in their tissue.

This is because fish absorb mercury as they eat and it builds up in their tissue over time. Some fish to look out for that are known to have higher mercury levels are tuna, marlin, king mackerel, and swordfish. This means my sardines obsession (a very small, short-lived fish) is totally okay!



This is something I use ALL THE TIME! Whether I’m baking mercury-laded fish, roasting veggies or baking the occasional batch of cookies, I’m always using aluminum foil. Aluminum foil when heated and aluminum cookware can leach significant amounts of this heavy metal into your food. So from now on, only use aluminum foil for wrapping things you store in the fridge.



Antiperspirant is a HUGE exposure when it comes to aluminum! Aluminum is the ingredient in antiperspirants that blocks your pores so sweat can’t make its way to the skins surface. Think about how often you apply antiperspirant? Every. Single. Day, sometimes 2-3 times a day! Bottom Line is to switch to a natural, aluminum-free deodorant.



This one was the most shocking to me, but did you know that rice can contain arsenic? Arsenic is found in soil, and is very absorb-able by rice while it grows. Now, I’m not going to stop eating rice, but these are some easy swaps:

Basmati Rice from California has the least amount of arsenic, so I will be buying this type.

Quinoa, buckwheat and millet are great alternative grains that are very low in arsenic. 



PSA Alter: “There is probably arsenic in the antibiotics that are fed to conventionally raised meat and poultry.”

The easiest way to avoid this is to buy organically fed meat and poultry. Now I know this is not as easy, or inexpensive, as it sounds so consider going meatless a few times a week to lessen the load on arsenic if you aren’t going to buy organic.

It’s impossible to avoid heavy metals all together, and to be honest I don’t have the time to constantly make sure I am heavy metal free. Implementing some of the tips above will for sure help lessen your heavy metal toxicity load though, and for now… that’s just going to have to be good enough for my lifestyle.



You Might Be Filling Your Body With Heavy Metals Without Even Realizing It

By now most of us know that antiperspirant is bad for our health, but do you know why? It’s a lot worse than you probably thought.

Types of Sweat

There are two types of glands responsible for sweating – the eccrine glands and the apocrine glands.

Eccrine glands are found all over the body. They produce sweat when the body is overheated to help cool the body down. The type of sweat produced from the eccrine glands is a clear, salt water type of sweat, which usually does not contribute to body odor.

The apocrine glands are found in areas with lots of hair follicles, such as the scalp and underarms. These glands produce a thicker, fattier sweat in times of stress. The bacteria that live and grow under the arms feeds off this type of sweat, and the breakdown of the proteins is what causes body odor. Your underarms are enclosed so bacteria have a higher chance of growing.

Why Antiperspirant is so Popular

Antiperspirant is popular because it helps to stop us from sweating. While this may seem like a positive thing, it actually unhealthy for the body. There are three toxic chemicals formulated in antiperspirants that can pose negative effects on your body:

  1. Aluminum in antiperspirants block the eccrine and apocrine sweat glands to stop you from sweating. The aluminum doesn’t just sit on the surface – it eventually works its way into your body and bloodstream. Although aluminum works really well to stop sweat, it is very detrimental to our health.
  2. Parabens are used in a wide variety of personal care products to prevent the growth of microbes. They are a known hormone disruptor and have been linked to breast cancer.
  3. Propylene glycol is a synthetic compound used in products such as ANTI-FREEZE, but it’s also found in many beauty products like deodorant, fragrances, and shampoos.

Now that you know how antiperspirant actually works, I bet you’ll be thinking twice about making the switch to natural deodorant.

Learn more about our natural charcoal deodorants. Click here.

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