Way back in May, I celebrated Celiac Awareness Month by writing a post (most) every day. Also, I had asked other friends to tell about their experiences with either living gluten-free, gluten-free family and friends, or living gluten-free for a week. Today’s post is from my friend Lex, who offered to live gluten-free for a week. So, without further ado, here is Lex’s story about living as a someone with Celiac Disease.
Hi! I’m Lex. I’m not a Celiac, but my best friend is—he runs this very cool, informative, educational and wonderful blog you’re reading now. He asked me among others in honor of Celiac Awareness Month to live gluten-free for a week—and I’ll get to in another post—but there was something that I’ve noticed Brian doesn’t necessarily write about…
I was getting ready to go out and meet my boyfriend for an evening of nerdom. Hair spiked up with Short Sexy Hair Gel. Nails done with China Glaze’s Midnight Ride on Rodeo Drive nail polish. Schalacked my face with Benefit foundation. I was about to apply some Benefit Powder when I paused staring at my brush.
Holy Nutbunnies…is my makeup gluten-free?
I stared at my face brush for a moment as the soft petals of pink fell into my sink and grabbed my cellphone to text the one person I think knows the most about Gluten related questions and paused—asking your best dude friend about makeup is a little awkward (though Bri took it in wonderful stride).
I argued with Brian on this, but: does gluten-free makeup matter? I mean, it’s only on my skin, but not in my bloodstream, right? Or can it be? Did I just fail my gluten-free week before it began?
I thought about the products I use: hair gel, nail polish, face powder, lipstick… I thought only lipstick might matter (as I read it somewhere in the great beyond) that it can be digested and possibly absorbed into body this way. Brian found a few articles to the contrary in regards to ALL cosmetics, so I did some additional poking about. So, my gluten-free makeup wearing friends, here are some hopefully helpful hints and resources on being gluten-free and wearing makeup:
- Makeup can be absorbed into your bloodstream through possible accidental ingestion. Lipstick transfers to a cup, and then you drink from there and yum! A little gluten in your coffee.
- Changed your diet, but still getting rashes, dry skin, etc? Check your hand lotion. Afton Jones – known as the Gluten Free Makeup Gal says: “…many Celiacs- diagnosed as having the autoimmune disease and not allergic-have inexplicable trouble with gluten when it comes in contact with their skin, causing what would be medically classified as “allergy” symptoms. Such as terrible rashes, eczema, dry and itching eyes, swelling, bleeding sores and more. As always with Celiac, the exact symptoms vary from person to person.”
- Most cosmetics aren’t marked as “gluten-free”—though this is starting to change—and the FDA doesn’t require it specifically for cosmetics themselves. If you want to figure out if your products have gluten in them (aside from the obvious Oatmeal Scrub), GlutenFreeRN has an awesome ingredient list. I’ve learned; however, you can lookup the gluten question on most company websites. If not, you can email them asking them directly about ingredients to get a response as well. Most are happy to oblige.
- I admit I’m too scared to look at my Japanese Shampoo bottle to translate the ingredients, but be aware of anything that you put on your skin from shampoo to conditioner to hand lotion to perfume. I know I am now!
So, back to my original question: did I fail my gluten-free week before it began? For my line up of products, I researched as many as I could and found the following:
- Benefit Makeup: Gluten Free, but not guaranteed: http://www.benefitcosmetics.com/help/faq#faq-18
- China Glaze Nail Polish (I chew my nails, so this is a biggie for me): I have no idea! This was a hard one and I need to email the company. There are gluten-free nail polishes like: Keeki (find some glow in the dark polish here: http://www.iherb.com/Keeki-Pure-Simple-Nail-Polish-Glow-in-the-Dark-0-5-fl-oz-15-ml/37214?utm_source=shc&utm_medium=c&ppnshpng) or the easy to find Wet and Wild, Sally Hansen and finally, OPI (however the Nail Envy line should be avoided by people with sensitivities).
- Short Sexy Hair Gels: nope, this specific product is NOT gluten-free. But! Sexy Hair has a whole product lineup of gluten-free products available and listed in their main product line up on the site: http://www.sexyhair.com/producttypes.aspx?type=Gluten%20Free
- Aveeno Stress Relief Moisturizer: Gluten Free! Aveeno has a bunch of products, but they are not listed on their site. There was an email posted here from Aveeno listing their line up.
Not too bad I think!
In addition to the above listed resources, there are several gluten-free product lines out there like Red Apple Lipstick, Cleure, and Bare Escentuals which is the only makeup line I can say I’ve personally used and really liked their powder products.
Anyway, I hope this helps in your cosmetic decisions as you get gussied up for an evening out and most importantly doesn’t leave you asking your best dude friend for makeup assistance…it can get a little awkward…or he may just post it on his blog.