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Episode 70: Are Toxins Hiding in My Personal Care Products

doTERRA: How many products do you use every day? Do you know exactly what's in those products? Personal care products contain thousands of different chemicals. With all of the different personal care products we use each day, the chemicals can add up and contribute to your toxic load. But today, we're going to talk about how to avoid this extra burden on your toxic load. 

Welcome back to Essential Oil Solutions with doTERRA, the podcast where you'll hear exciting, useful, and simple everyday uses for essential oils from experts in the field. If you like what you hear today, rate, review, and subscribe wherever you listen. We always appreciate hearing from you.

Today, we're excited to talk to Melissa Herman about avoiding toxins in your personal care products and the options doTERRA has for you. Melissa, thank you so much for being with us today. 

Melissa Herman: Hi! Thank you for having me. I'm so excited to be here. I’ve loved doTERRA. I've been using the doTERRA products for over 11 years now, and it's been very impactful for our family.

doTERRA: That is incredible, eleven years. So you've been around almost since the beginning. 

Melissa: Yeah, yeah. On the one-year anniversary. 

doTERRA: That's amazing. So with this topic of detoxifying your personal care, one of the biggest questions that I think a lot of people have is: What kinds of ingredients should I watch out for in my personal care products?

Melissa: That's a really great question, and a really hard one to answer because the list is so long. So as I think about that, I think about what are some of the big things that when I pick up a product at the store and I look at the ingredient label, what am I really not going to touch with a ten-foot pole. And those would be things that contain any form of parabens, any fragrances—because those synthetic fragrances are so hard on the body. 

You think about walking down the candle aisle, some people might get headaches from it and some people don't. When I was younger, I didn't. I didn't understand why people would get a headache. I thought that something was wrong with them. And what I came to realize later was something was wrong with me. It was because I had such a toxic lifestyle that my senses and my sensory—like—my receptors were not picking up on that I should be having a reaction to those kinds of things. So now that I've cleansed my body, now I'm like, “Oh, now I see what they're saying.” So I do try to stay away from synthetic fragrances in particular. 

Some other things, too, that I look out for are like the sulfates and phthalates. I mean, the list is so long and that's why the list is so long is because so many of these products or ingredients, chemicals, have different aliases that they go by. And so, it's just really hard to know. You don't even know that that's what you're putting on your skin and in your makeup. Anything that's going on your face is going in your mouth. Let's be honest. It's going to travel there. So you are going to ingest it, things that go on your hands, you touch your food, you touch your face. So we really don't realize the depth of how much these chemicals are actually impacting our body.

doTERRA: Well that is very helpful. I think, like you said, those labels can be very confusing, but those are really helpful things specifically to watch out for when you're picking out those products for your home 

Melissa: Yeah, and especially for yourself, your family, your pets. We're all impacted by those things.  

doTERRA: Absolutely. So, my next question for you is, and I think you touched on this a little bit in your last answer, why is it that products are able to affect my toxic load?

Melissa: Yeah, that is a great question because, like I said, it's going to impact your liver. So things that are going into your body—your liver is part of your filtration system. So if we think about the filter on your furnace filter or your car filter or your water filter, they need to be cleaned out after a while because they can only bear so much load before they stop really functioning well. 

And so that's the thing that our liver and our kidneys and our lungs are doing for our body is they're trying to filter some of that out. But at some point, it gets to be too much. And that's when we really start to see that our lifestyle doesn't feel as good as it used to, like we don't feel like our old selves. And that's really that toxic load is just building up so much on our body that we need a way to get that out. But we also need to stop bringing so much in, of the toxins.

doTERRA: Absolutely. And you mentioned before that there is just this huge list of ingredients that could contribute to our toxic load, which kind of makes some people start to feel overwhelmed about what might be in their house. What do you recommend if I start feeling overwhelmed by trying to clean out my personal care products? 

Melissa: OK, that's—yeah. That is an overwhelming feeling because the average person takes in about 515 different chemicals just through their personal care products. 

doTERRA: Wow. 

Melissa: I know, I was thinking about this. Like, if you think of every ingredient, every chemical being like a sheet of paper, you might not feel it in your hand. It's so light. But if you look at one personal care product that might have 26 different chemicals in it, you're going to start to feel that. 

Building Up Your Toxic Load

But think about just, kind of, think about your day. You start your day off in your bed. You've slept in your bed for about maybe eight or nine hours. And whatever laundry detergent, maybe fabric softener, that you used—not only is your skin touching, but your face. You're smelling it all night long. So your receptors are taking it in. 

Then you get up and you take a shower. And you think about what—you know—what soap you're using, the shampoo and conditioner, the face wash, the face scrub, the toner. There are so many steps to our routine that we just take for granted, that we don't even realize how many things we're introducing to our bodies. And then we go brush our teeth and then, and then, and then the lotion.

I mean, it just is so many that if each one of those is carrying a load of—you know—let's say that sheet of paper again and each one of those has a load of maybe 10 to 26 different sheets of paper. And you just loaded all those on, now you're really going to feel like a few reams of paper feeling. And then you're going into the foods that you eat and the air that you breathe that when you really start looking at all that, it can start to feel like the world is stacked against you. Like, how do we even live? It's a remarkable thing that the human body can even endure that much. So it is important that we start somewhere.

Simple Solutions

And what I found with doTERRA is that there are some really great packages already put together that I like to go to. So we have packages like the Natural Solutions Kit and the Healthy Home Kit, and there's many others as well, that are really good starting places. And what I love about them is the learning curve is so minimal because when you buy it, you're just replacing out some things that are in your routine already. Like, you already know how to brush your teeth. You already know how to wash your hair and wash your hands. So swapping out those products, it makes it such an easy transition instead of feeling like, “I have to research everything. I have to go to a store and pick every single thing.” 

And then with time, I've found—just start pulling a few more pieces in. Like, I love the laundry detergent from doTERRA. And what I love most is not only are these things healthier, safer than a lot of other options out there, but the performance is amazing. I haven't found other things that perform as well as our laundry detergent, our shampoo and conditioner, our hair shine serum is one of my favorites, our toothpaste. And that's something that I found when I tried other natural things is, well, t's natural, but it doesn't work real great. 

doTERRA: Right. 

Melissa: With doTERRA, it works really great, and it smells really great. And yeah. 

doTERRA: That is so helpful and just doing it those little pieces at a time, not trying to tackle everything at once, like you said. Just start with maybe one of those bundles and move forward from there. So you mentioned those bundles and a few other products. Could you let us know a little bit more detail about some of your favorite personal care products that doTERRA has?

doTERRA Salon Essentials® Protecting Shampoo and Smoothing Conditioner

Melissa: Oh, yeah. I think about when I travel or if I had to be somewhere, products that I refuse to have to make do with. If I have to travel, I refuse to use other shampoos and conditioners because my hair will feel like straw afterwards. Even if they're really high end, it does not perform or smell the same. So I love our shampoo and conditioner and our hair shine serum. My two daughters, who are 12 and 16, and I we make sure that we always have three unopened extras because we just love the way that it works. 

doTERRA On Guard® Laundry Detergent

The laundry detergent. I always have plenty of that. And I partake in our rewards program because what I love to do is I like to redeem my rewards for all my toiletries, like our laundry detergent, because then that frees up more of my budget that I can spend on my supplements and other things. But I love it because I feel like I'm getting the highest performing products for free. It’s kind of cool. So I love that. 

doTERRA Spa Bath Bar and doTERRA Spa Hand & Body Lotion

My husband swears by the unscented lotion, and he has really sensitive skin. And so, when he used to use other lotions, he has always been very particular about the brands. And I just always noticed that his skin still felt really rough. But then when he switched to our bar soap—he also likes the shower gel, but he really likes the bar soap—and then the unscented moisturizing lotion, his skin is so soft. It's just unbelievable. It's like baby soft. So he swears by those. And I always joke because when we get down to about like maybe four bars of soap, or five bars of soap, he starts to panic like, “Did you order more? Do we have some more?” Those are kind of his must-haves.

doTERRA On Guard® Foaming Hand Wash

And then my twelve-year-old, one of her must-haves is the On Guard Hand Wash. And she uses it to get stains out of clothes. So she's taught us how if you just squirt a little and just rub it together or use a toothbrush, even something that's been sitting at the bottom of laundry basket that you've been avoiding for a really long time, it doesn't matter. She can get out any stain with that hand wash. So that's pretty cool. 

doTERRA Skin Care Lines

And then, of course, our skin care line. You know, we mix both the Essential Skin Care and the Veráge®. So our whole family, we intermingle those and just use them together. So we're not preference over one kit to another. We like to use both. 

doTERRA: Well, all of that sounds amazing. And I think that gives people a really good starting place to go and find the products that work for them and for their families.

Melissa: Yeah, and what I love about it is that they smell great, but they work great. So once you start using it, you start to see that this is a good way to go. And then it builds my trust for all the other products, too. So even as doTERRA continues to launch new—let's say—new cleaning products or new products for my home, I already trust that it's going to perform really well and that it will be a good investment for my family because sometimes when I go to the store and I try new things, I'm disappointed, and I feel like I wasted my money. But I've never felt that way with doTERRA.

doTERRA: I think that is absolutely right. Melissa, thank you so, so much for sitting down with us today, giving us your sage advice, and letting us know how you and your family have used doTERRA to help clean up your personal care products

Melissa: And you know what? We feel better because of it, like our bodies are showing the response by not putting so many toxins into our body. Our bodies are thanking us for that. 

doTERRA: Thanks for joining us and congratulations on living a healthier lifestyle with essential oils. If you liked what you heard today, rate, review, and subscribe wherever you listen. Also, if you want to try any of the products you learned about, go to or find a Wellness Advocate near you to place an order today.

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