Thursday, April 26, 2018

Personal Care During Chemo

Since being diagnosed with breast cancer, I've had to change a few things about my personal care routine.  My cancer is ER/PR positive, which means that it feeds on my hormones.  Therefore, eliminating anything I'm using that could mimic hormones is a good idea.  I also feel a lot better about using more natural products since I'm subjecting my body to more and more that is messing it up while treating the cancer.  #poisonwithapurpose

For anyone in the same boat, the most helpful thing I've found is to look for items that are free of parabens.  Here are the products I've been using and liking:

Burt's Bees Hydrating Eye Cream - Nice and light, but hydrating.  My skin is really dry from chemo, and this has been good. 
Acure Day Cream and Night Cream - They both smell good and sink right in - no greasy feeling, but leave my skin nicely moisturized. 
Josie Maran Argan Matchmaker Foundation - This is really more of a tinted moisturizer.  I've worn this for years on top of my other moisturizer and love it.  It evens my skin tone out a little without feeling heavy like a traditional foundation, and has made my skin look the best it has ever looked, pre-chemo, at least.

Native deodorant - I've been using this for over a year and really like it.  It's a deodorant - not an antiperspirant, which took some getting used to.  It smells really good (I use the coconut-vanilla scent) and it's all natural.  (If you switch to an all natural deodorant, give it a few weeks before you  decide to give up on it.  Your body needs to detox from the aluminum-based antiperspirant you've probably been using, and you may smell funky until your body is used to the new stuff!) 
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream - This is a good intense moisturizer that I dab anywhere on my face that I need a little extra help.
Tom's toothpaste - I've used this for years and years.  I'm making sure to use one with both fluoride and baking soda in it right now since chemo can do a number on your teeth.  I can't stand the taste of artificially flavored toothpastes anymore.  I love Tom's.

Alba Botanica Coconut Rescue Bath & Shower Gel - I switched to this for my showers instead of the Bath & Body Works stuff I used to use (hello parabens!)  It comes in a huge bottle with a pump, is very moisturizing, and has a gentle, non-offensive scent, which is really nice when chemo has made me queasy.  There's a mango one I'd like to try post-chemo. 

Anti-b Antibacterial Shampoo - great for when your hair is falling out and chemo has caused folliculitis, irritating all the follicles and giving you red bumps all over your scalp.  It has a slightly medicinal scent, but the lemon oil in it helps to cover that.  Very soothing for a balding scalp.
Cetaphil Baby Shampoo - Lightly scented and contains calendula; soothing and moisturizing when you're going bald.

Yes to Coconut Cleansing Stick - This has coffee and coconut in it, is moisturizing and scrubby, and is really easy to use in the shower when you're tired but need to scrub your face.
Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser - I've used this for years.  Very, very gentle.  It's great to use in the shower during chemo, especially, because you can use it gently on your eyes.  When your lashes are falling out it's nice to be able to wash your eyelids and this does a great job.

I've had to switch all of my makeup, as well, but won't go into that.  I've found that the more natural the product, the harder it is to find and the more expensive it is.  But it's worth it to get stuff that will be better for my body and won't help to feed the cancer!

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Charlie said...

Are these personal care routine changes are temporary while you're undergoing chemo? Or will they be long term? If the latter, do you feel sad about that at all?

Trish said...

These - natural products, no parabens, etc - are permanent changes. I'll be monitored for recurrence of the cancer for the rest of my life.

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