After recently finding a wonderfully written and informative dermatology blog (zizaidermatology.wordpress.com), one of the first posts I read was about the author struggling through a rash around the mouth and discovering an allergy to beeswax (http://zizaidermatology.wordpress.com/2010/07/16/am-i-allergic-to-beeswax/), specifically the Bee Propolis that occurs in the wax.
This post couldn’t have come at a more opportune time, as I think beeswax might be a big trigger for some of my own current skin issues.
I recently purchased two Badger Balm products because I was looking for 1. a good lip balm, and 2. a good soothing natural moisturizer for the spots on my face that get really dry. I purchased the Creamy Cocoa lip balm, and the Badger Balm Baby Balm.
I diligently read online reviews, and read nothing but good stuff about these things. And I thought, “Yay! Beeswax is all natural. This should be good!”
When I put on the cocoa butter lip balm, my lips felt a little tingly and itchy. Nothing really major, but it just wasn’t as pleasant as I anticipated. So, after one use, I put it away and thought maybe I would try it again later on.
Then I moved on to the Baby Balm. It’s only got 5 ingredients, all natural things, but it’s primarily composed of beeswax. I did do a patch test on a dry spot on my knuckle – no ill effects the next day, so I figured I was good to apply the stuff to some of my facial rashes before bed to heal and soften them.
This is what happened (I’m tilting my head back in these pictures so that the rash can be fully seen):
I don’t have a Before and After picture of my face available to post, but let’s just say the results were about the same. This was two days ago and my face is still recovering. I look like I have very unhealthy skin and I feel about the same. People at work are giving me concerned looks and asking me if I am okay. So. Judging by this experience, I do not react well to beeswax. Which then got me thinking. A LOT of mascaras contain beeswax. You need something waxy in it to get it to stick to the lashes. I went online and checked the ingredients for my current Almay Get up and Grow mascara. Yup, beeswax. Swell.
Which THEN got me thinking about when these rashes around my eyes and on my face all started. Things began with a little spot under my left eye that started around July of 2011, and then gradually got worse over my face in the last, oh, maybe 6 months or so. It was really weird, because I don’t remember changing any of my facial products, but all of a sudden it was like my skin became extremely sensitive and I couldn’t use my previous moisturizers AT ALL. I can’t remember exactly when, but one day when I went to the store to buy mascara, my normal type was out (I used to use Almay Triple Effect – which incidentally does NOT have beeswax), so I got this Get up and Grow stuff instead. I have to wonder if these events coincided.
(And, okay, I know mascara and makeup in general is not the best thing for sensitive skin. I know this. This is why I read reviews and ingredients like a hawk, try and search out non-irritating products, and wear quite minimal makeup. I gotta at least look human at work, as I’ve tried to do NO makeup and was sick of the stares and comments, so I just wear mascara and concealer right now.)
Today’s evening activities will involve a trip to the store for a new, NON-BEESWAX-USING mascara. I’m either going back to the Almay Triple Effect, or trying a new Tarte one (gifted Amazonian Clay mascara, which uses rice bran wax, carnauba wax, and candelilla wax instead of beeswax). It is HARD to find a mascara with out beeswax, but I’m making the switch tonight and hoping this will eventually clear up a lot of my problems!