Linda’s Big Spring Salad and Lindemans Framboise

Thursday evening – the weekend is in sight! After a rather dull work day, I needed a little pick-me-up, so the huz and I headed to Depot Town for dinner at Sidetrack. Pretty fresh lilies were on the tables today!

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I tried one of the most recently new-on-tap drafts: Lindemans Framboise, a raspberry lambic beer. This was incredibly delicious! It was rather sweet, but the sweetness was tamed by a lingering sour, tartness. It has a low alcohol content, and I would probably prefer it as a dessert course, but mmm, so tasty. I definitely couldn’t drink a lot of this in one sitting due to the sweetness, but this ten ounce snifter was an appropriate portion size.

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Sweet & Salty: Fried beer-battered pickles with my Framboise.

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For dinner, I ordered Linda’s Big Spring Salad, topped with black bean burger. Sidetrack has the best black bean burger (literally, ever). I’ve had this salad before and enjoyed it – so many goodies, like asparagus, hard boiled eggs, gorgonzola, mushrooms, and bell peppers, with balsamic dressing.

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The huz ordered the burger of the day.

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I’ve been on a mission lately to acquire a moisturizer with sun protection that is free of harmful ingredients. I’ve used a daily facial moisturizer with SPF 15 since I was in my mid-teens, and as of late I have been using Purpose brand, which is gentle and fragrance free; however, it’s active ingredients (such as Oxybenzone, which provide sun protection) are not the safest options out there. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has an online database that assigns safety ratings to cosmetics and body products, such as sunscreen, nail polish, fragrance, and shampoo, on a 0-10 scale, with 0-2 indicating a low hazard, 3-6 corresponding to a moderate hazard, and 7-10 indicating a high hazard to human health.

My Purpose SPF 15 Moisture Lotion has a rating of 5, or moderate risk, according to the EWG database, due to the potential risks of endocrine disruption, cellular signaling disruptions, organ system toxicity, neurotoxicity, and more. Basically, anything you put on your body has the potential to be absorbed by your skin and enter your body, and the chemicals used in many of these products are not highly regulated. It is kind of scary!

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The EWG suggests the following guidelines for selecting a safer sunscreen:

No
SPF above 50
Retinyl palmitate
Aerosol spray and powder sunscreen
Oxybenzone
Insect repellent

Yes
Hats and shade in mid-day sun.
Zinc or Titanium are the best active ingredients, otherwise Avobenzone at 3%
SPF 30 for intense sun
Use a lot and reapply frequently

[ source ]

Tonight at Whole Foods I found and purchased Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen with Hemp Seed Oil, which, per the EWG’s suggestions, possesses an SPF <50, is not a spray or powder, and does not contain Oxybenzone or Retinyl palmitate, and instead contains a safer active sun-protection ingredient: 8.5% Titanium Dioxide. I thought I chose well, so when I came home and looked up this product in the EWG database, I was a little bummed that this product is only scored 1 point lower than my Purpose moisturizer. The Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen is rated a 4 (moderate risk) in the EWG database. Hmm.

Since moisturizer is a product I used daily and liberally, I thought it might be worthwhile to research using a safer product. Next I’d like to start tackling replacing some other products I use frequently, such as facial cleanser, soap, shampoo, deodorant, and concealer, with safer alternatives, since many of my current products have high hazard ratings.

Can anyone suggest a more natural facial cleanser? Currently I use Clean & Clear Foaming Facial Cleanser for sensitive skin and it is rated a 6 (moderate hazard) in the EWG database. It contains several highly concerning ingredients, including fragrance ( hazard level 8/10!!) and triclosan (hazard level 7/10!!).

Hopefully I’m not getting too hippie on y’all here with my hemp seed oil moisturizer! Bahaha.

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