In an effort to avoid as many chemicals as I can in our toxic world, I do my best to not put anything on my face that I couldn't put in my mouth. For many people, though, mainstream beauty products are standard items. According to a Bloomberg report, the average American woman uses about twelve health and beauty products on her face every morning. From formaldehyde in shampoo to lead in lipstick, that's a lot of toxins to be absorbing.
I began as an urban gardener. Urban farming is imperative to cities, and I had thought my husband and I would eventually be urban farmers—but alas, that is not where life has taken us, and we currently rent land in a halfway suburb, one that straddles concrete city and corn-strewn country.
There are a lot of simple ways to try and prevent toxins from being absorbed into your body. Everything from new clothes to drugstore make-up to regular deodorant carries toxins, and your skin, which happens to be the largest eliminating organ your body has, absorbs all that it comes in contact with. But fear not; much can be done to avoid these contacts (wearing organic materials or thrift clothes that have been washed numerous times, wearing natural or no make-up, using a deodorant crystal or another homemade product are a few examples). One of the simplest things you can do (if you don't already) is to stop using conventional menstruation products.
April 17 is Equal Pay Day, marking how many extra hours women have to work in order to make as much as their male counterparts did the year prior. Not only is this day depressing because we're still "celebrating" it nearly half a century after John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act, it's depressing because large pay gaps still exist among groups of women whose wages fall far below 77 cents on the dollar.
To me, witches are the quintessential ecofeminists.
"Witch" is a word that was sullied by various groups of long ago, but it's been reclaimed by herbalists like me. Witches and the word "witch" have many meanings in many cultures, but for the purposes of this post, I will touch on just one context, one dark moment of history: The suppression of witches—or healers who were mainly women—in medieval Europe that went on for centuries, and the themes behind those witch hunts that still appear in society today.