OCTOBER IS BREAST CANCER PREVENTION MONTH

Did you know that around 85% of breast cancers are not linked to family history? This means that there are steps you can take to reduce your exposure to environmental factors linked to the disease. With this encouraging fact in mind, we’ve teamed up with two organizations spreading the word about prevention: Breast Cancer Prevention Partners (BCPP) and Keep A Breast.

Meet our partners in breast cancer prevention

Every October, we support the great work of Breast Cancer Prevention Partners (formerly known as Breast Cancer Fund), a respected non-profit dedicated to stopping breast cancer before it starts. BCPP’s main area of focus is reducing exposure to chemicals potentially linked to cancer, including those that may be found in beauty products. The organization takes a science-based approach to advocacy—publishing research papers, fighting for legislative reform, and teaching the public about breast cancer’s avoidable causes. We recently partnered with BCPP on a huge win to increase the transparency of ingredients used in professional salon products.

We’ve also joined forces with Keep A Breast, a foundation that promotes the importance of early detection and prevention among young people. With roots in the art world, Keep A Breast’s initiatives include Non-Toxic Revolution—an education platform focused on chemicals linked to breast cancer—and the Traveling Education Booth that promotes breast cancer prevention at places like music festivals and sporting events. We encourage everyone to download the Check Yourself app from Keep A Breast, a great reminder to conduct monthly breast exams.

For the month of October, BCPP and Keep A Breast have created a Beautycounter-specific fundraising page. Visit the link to donate, and feel free to share with friends and family.

In addition, many of our Consultants will be generously donating a portion of their October sales to our partners. Find a Consultant in your area here—and if you’d like to become a Consultant yourself, click here.

Stay informed and educate others

The more you know, the more you can do to prevent exposure to potentially harmful chemicals. That’s why we asked BCPP to share some easy prevention tips to implement in your own life and to share with others.

Around the house:

  1. Choose safer cleaning products

Conventional cleaning products take away dirt, but may leave behind harmful chemicals. Try cleaner brands like Seventh Generation (a fellow B Corp) and Molly’s Suds. Vacuum with a HEPA filter to reduce sending chemicals into the air, and then your lungs.

  1. If you don’t know what’s in something, don’t use it

Labeling loopholes allow companies to avoid disclosing ingredients on cleaning product labels. Only buy and use cleaning products which disclose all ingredients on the product label to avoid possible exposure to harmful chemicals.

  1. Go DIY when you can

Use baking soda to neutralize odors and soak up dampness, and vinegar to clean and deodorize. Add a cup of vinegar to your laundry to brighten up whites, remove odors, and lift tougher grime off fabrics. Add a few drops of your favorite citrus juice (think lemons, oranges) or essential oils (try eucalyptus) to a vinegar-based cleaning spray to fill your home with a fresh scent.

In the Kitchen:

  1. Kick the can

Many canned food companies continue to use BPA (or bisphenols), an estrogenic chemical linked to breast cancer, to line their metal cans. Research shows that BPA migrates from the can lining into our food and then into our bodies. Choose fresh, frozen or dried, but keep that can opener away.

  1. Skip the plastic

Plastics can leach harmful chemicals like BPA and phthalates into your food and beverages and then into you. Use glass and stainless steel food storage containers and water bottles. Never microwave plastic — even “microwave-safe” plastic can leach chemicals into food when heated.

  1. Ditch Teflon pots and pans

Some toxic compounds are used in non-stick cookware. While they keep food and stains from sticking, they stick around in the body for a very long time and may be linked to cancer. Make the switch to cast iron, stainless steel or anodized aluminum cookware and glass bakeware as you can.

In the Bathroom:

  1. Read ingredient labels

Companies may use potentially harmful ingredients in the cosmetics and personal care products we use every day. Check out BCPP’s Glossary of Exposures.

  1. Be in the know

Don’t be fooled by short and incomplete ingredient lists, or natural and organic claims. Look for products that disclose all ingredients on the product label to avoid possible exposure to potentially harmful chemicals.

  1. Avoid fragrance

The word fragrance is a cocktail of ingredients, that can mask countless potential carcinogens and hormone disrupting chemicals, and can be found in nearly half of all personal care products. Avoid purchasing and using products with the word “fragrance” or “parfum” on the label. Be especially vigilant on children’s products.

  1. Use online tools and look for official seals

Ditch your old daily routine and replace it with safer beauty products. Apps and websites like EWG’s Skin Deep will rate your personal care products for safety and toxicity and MADE SAFE® plus EWG Verified are helping to make it easier to find safer products by labeling them with a special seal. Visit often and stay up-to-date.

Now that you know, help us spread the word!

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