Reviews: Think Dirty / by YT

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There are 2 personal skincare stories I would like to set straight before getting into the review, since they will explain the standpoint I am coming from. 

I was sold on Clean&Clear products by TV Ads in my teens. Despite my mum telling me that, all I needed to do then is exactly the same thing she did when she was a teen in the 70s: wash my face with water and moisturize it with cold cream. Combining curiosity, peer influences and more persuasion from telly and teen magazines, I lashed out on blackhead stickers, face wipes and blotting paper/powder, which I wouldn’t have needed at that time. I wouldn’t say it has shattered my porcelain visage, but it has definitely taken some features away from my natural complexion. Inception: Marketing can be toxic. 

Things were going fairly well in the facial department up till a breaking point, quite literally. My face broke out due to stress from A-levels and my first-ever breakup. It left me with both physical and emotional scars, how embarrassing.. Fortunately, I was treated by a Chinese Medicines practitioner in Hong Kong, with herbal medicine and acupuncture. Since then, I am proud to say that I am healed from hormonal acnes and heartaches! Inception: All guys are jerks. NAHHHH more like: Skin condition can be affected by internal and external causes. 

Review starts here. 

Like most ladies, the beauty aisle in drug stores has similar effect on me as pick ’n' mix. As much as I want to try everything out, there's always a prickly thorn at the back of my neck reminding me of the weary past.. Wouldn’t it be great if I can consult someone knowledgeable in skincare on-the-go, like all the time…? 

Think Dirty may or may not be the holy grail to this quest. 

Think Dirty is an app which you can scan the barcode of your makeup, skincare or toiletries, to see how toxic they are based on their ingredients. Each ingredient listed on the product label or manufacturer’s website is then evaluated for documented evidence of Carcinogenicity, Developmental & Reproductive Toxicity and/or Allergenicity & Immunotoxicity. For further information on what index and studies they are based on, I encourage you to read into Think Dirty’s methodology (Link) and the background of their advisors (Link). 

Think Dirty may be the holy grail. 

This app has been in my phone for 3 months, and it’s safe to say that it’s an essential in my life right now. At first, I was quite bothered by how much crap are in cosmetics available in the market place. Some may say it’s paranoia to believe in these conspiracy. But seeing how widely available and cheap these products are, it really bugs me to think about what did they put in it to make it ‘work’ the way they say they would. 

On one hand, it is satisfying discovering the ugly truth, just like seeing all those gunk from your pores being exfoliated. On the other hand, it’s drying and here comes the part where it may not be the holy grail. 


Where to draw the line between being health-concious and squeamish?

“ I am allergic to (chemical name 1), (chemical name 2) and sometimes (chemical name 3). That explains. ” 
“ I don’t know what Paraben is, but apparently it’s bad for you."

There are still many problems with studies that are often cited as making an ingredient harmful that they are not related to how they are used, also standardisation in extracting natural ingredients are often questionable. Basically, if you want to be paranoid about everything, you have reasons to. Then an app showing you toxins in your products isn’t going to suffice, or it won’t strike a chord and you can flick these info off your shoulder, live your life without a care about what’s doing what to your body. 

See above, the two different ways of approaching this matter. As I was researching for this piece, I came across this Reddit discussion (Link) which resonates with me in parts. Basically, there is a massive gap in studies and company transparency which is putting public health at risk ( on a grand scale..) On a personal level, it benefits you to find out what to avoid and learn more about what to and not to look for in the products you buy. After all, it’s about self-care, you know your needs and body’s condition the best.