Are Your Cosmetics Safe?

If you are reading The Cureality blog chances are you care about your health. You care about what you eat. You want to remain healthy, free of disease, feel good and possibly even want to look and feel as vibrant as you were when you were 20. Many of us think of food all day long. Many of us love to eat. We plant gardens so we know our food is free of pesticides and other toxic chemicals. Food can be a cause of disease and it can minimize our chances of disease. We try and take care of our insides but did you ever wonder what in the world you apply to your skin on a daily basis? What do these products contain and are they safe? Why are there more endocrine disorders popping up. Could it be that some of things we apply to our skin every single day may be harmful to our insides?

A portion of the skin health section of Cureality will take a look at skincare products and cosmetics. Are the products we apply to our skin gluten-free, paraben-free and free of other harsh chemicals that can cause skin irritations and possible other unwanted diseases. I came across Mirabella cosmetics and I wanted to learn more about this particular product line so I tracked down John Maly, founder and CEO of Mirabella Cosmetics. Mr. Maly was gracious enough to take time out and answer my questions.This is what Mr. Maly has to say about Mirabella:

DD: Tell us about some key features about Mirabella, gluten-free cosmetics. What made you get started in a gluten-free line?

JM: We didn't start as gluten-free. Over time we have continued to make our line more beautiful AND more healthy for women. First we began with a mineral foundation. Then as we introduced new products, we made sure they were as clean and healthy, while still being fashion forward. We saw the benefits to our clients to take out those ingredients that didn't help them look and feel their best such as glutens, parabens and talcs.

DD: Some cosmetic companies carry partially gluten-free cosmetics. Are all of Mirabella products gluten-free, paraben-free and talc-free?

JM: Everything is paraben-free and talc free. And our brand is all gluten-free except our Skin Tint Creme foundation. That is a product that women love and we just cannot make the formula without a wheat protein to perform as well...yet! We will continue to work on it!

DD: Are there other ingredients in cosmetics that women should be cautious of using if they have skin sensitivities or allergies?

JM: Some women are sensitive to fragrance as well.This is another thing that we avoid with our brand. The biggest ingredients that women find that helps with their skin health is mineral products. They are natural and very breathable on a woman's skin.

DD: I think your velvet lip pencils are by far the most extraordinary lip pencil on the market. What are some of your other standout products your customers love?

JM: Pure Press Mineral Foundation is still our #1product. But the fastest growing product is Magic Marker Eyeliner. It is easy to use, doesn't smudge and lasts all day.

DD: Anything new on the horizon for Mirabella that you can share with us?

JM: In August we launch CC crème. This product has all the good for you ingredients to help with Anti-Aging like avocado oil, argan oil and Acai (Assai) berry. Plus it is a mineral formula, gluten-free, and paraben-free. And it has an SPF of 20. One of the biggest issues that women have with aging is lips. That is why we put Litchi Chinesis Fruit Extract in our Colour Vinyl lipstick. Then in your favorite Velvet Lip Pencil, we put Pomegranate Extract, Vitamin C and E in to assist with in Anti-Aging.

DD: Is Mirabella only sold in the US or do you have international distribution as well.

JM: We are sold in Canada, Australia, Finland and Russia.

DD: Where can we purchase your cosmetics?

JM: Our products are available at and at over 1,500 of the finest salons and spas. Go to our salon locator to find a retailer near you.

Traveling, while being wheat-free and dairy-free. Can it be done?

Summer vacation is right around the corner. The temptation to deviate from your normal healthy eating habits may occur… but resist. So how in the world do you continue to eat The Cureality way when you're traveling internationally? Let me tell you how I do it. I would also like to add I am allergic to dairy and I avoid all wheat containing foods. This has been my way of life for years and actually is extremely simple for me to manage while away from my own kitchen.

I decided to pay Italy a visit. I knew I would be overwhelmed with wonderfully fresh smelling bakery, pasta, cheese, gelato, and pizza. All foods I either can't consume due to my dairy allergy or foods I choose to avoid because of their health effects.

I was correct in my food assessment: the grains, bakery, and gelato were in every nook and cranny I encountered. Food choices can be difficult while traveling but I ask numerous questions regarding ingredients and I am certainly not afraid to swap out french fries for grilled vegetables.

Here's what I did the first few days on vacation with my diet routine to minimize dietary booby traps:

Day 1: 

Breakfast, Hmmmm….Italians like their bakery. WOW. Tough when most of the foods being served are grains and eggs with dairy mixed in. I had two hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, sausage and espresso.

Lunch: Arugula lettuce topped with a chicken breast, roasted peppers and tomatoes. A side of salmon and lots and lots of olive oil on top. Very tasty and filling with the olive oil.

Dinner: Hamburger (no bun) with tomato, mayo, lettuce topped with a mountain of sauteed spinach. Water and yes…Italian wine found it's place at the table.

Day 2: 

Breakfast: I devoured two hard boiled eggs with lettuce, cucumbers, shredded carrots, tomato and pineapple slices. Two cafe Americanos and water.

Lunch: Lunch was spectacular: Beef tips, arugula, lettuce, shredded carrots, tomatoes, olive oil and raw salmon. Yes, I mixed it all together and it was fabulous. Plenty of water with the "frizzle."

Dinner: I'll be honest: I had a difficult time with this meal due to our location and choice of foods, but I managed. Another hamburger with no bun, salad with mixed vegetables, and a few potato wedges. Wine and water.

Day 3: 

Breakfast: Hardboiled eggs were getting old. Nonetheless, I had two of them chopped with tomato. Deli meat--Italians love their deli meat as well. Cafe Americano and water.

Lunch: Seafood salad-shrimp, octopus and squid mixed with argulua, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and olive oil. Water.

Dinner: One hefty salad with shrimp, pear slices, ginger, tomatoes, avocado and olive oil. Wine and water.

Day 4:
Breakfast: Scrabbled eggs/sauage and pineapple slices. Cafe Americano and plenty of water.

Lunch/Dinner: I had to combine these two meals today. I had a delicious meal of curried shrimp (I made sure there was no dairy in the curry sauce) and a very large plate of grilled vegetables. Wine and water.

My diet may not be the most lavish to some but I enjoy my choices. I'm confident I will have no troubles with the remainder of my vacation. I haven't eaten wheat for a number of years so I don't experience the craving for bakery, pasta, or pizza. Dairy, I simply have to avoid, because I truly experience ill-effects from consuming it. My experience with travel and food choices have always worked in my favor. Ask questions and resist putting on that 5-10 pounds of vacation weight.