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  • Blythe Leonard

BL Bags, Phthalate Free

As many of you know, I have always been a huge advocate for buying leather instead of faux leather/vegan leather, and for buying American Made. Yesterday, as I sat in a local tourist area, my best friend and I began to converse about the harmful effects that PVC can have on a woman, children and the long term effects. She told me, “why don’t you tell people, I didn’t know and I would have liked to have been informed a long time ago.” So, this is my little educational speech for the week, but watch out, SPOILER ALERT, it might change your entire life.

When I first started my brand, the first picture I posted on Instagram, which is still on there, states, “Phthalates are chemicals often found in artificial leather and other plastic PVC clothing. They are absorbed through the skin and they’re linked to birth defects, asthma, neurodevelopmental problems in newborns, fertility issues and obesity.” So clearly, you saw from the very beginning what I stood behind and what I wanted say with my brand. Phthalates are a chemical used to make a plastic more flexible and can be found in all faux leathers, soaps, shampoos, and perfumes. In soaps, companies get away with it by including “fragrances” in the ingredients. Triclosans, another chemical that are in a lot of cosmetics, including a very popular hand soap company with one hundred million different fragrances. Phthalates and Triclosans are endocrine disruptors which mean they alter your hormones in women especially, and can affect newborn babies. So this means bags and shoes that you carry a lot or wear a lot, these phthalate particles are seeping into your skin. Studies have shown that these particles are in women’s blood and urine. An excess amount of these particles can cause long term effects and you should really do your research. Try and switch to organic soaps, lotions, shampoos, and try buying leather shoes that are going to last a lifetime not just a season.

Lead is also in a lot of bags that are made in China, for lead is not as controlled in manufacturing facilities. Did you know that over 60% of lipsticks that are sold in the USA contain high levels or lead? (According to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, CSC) four of the most popular cosmetic companies in the US tested positive for lead. Lead has been proven to be dangerous for unborn babies, for it is a neurotoxin.

There is a reason why we only use water based glues in our bags as well. In my higher education we were taught to use Master Cement, which is a toluene based adhesive. We had to have a ventilation system in the room in order to use it. Hello, red flag! Toluene can be disguised as phenylmethane, methylbenzene, or toluol and has been proven to cause cancer, dizziness, headaches, skin irritation in direct contact with your skin, and birth defects. Hint hint* it is also found in some nail polishes and hair dyes, so make sure to ask your beautician if your dyes are organic. I hope that by pointing these issues out that you will be proactive in rethinking some of the products that you use in your everyday life, it just might save your life. Trust me.

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