Environmental Enlightenment #190
By Ami Adini - October 06, 2011

This is a SHORT, LIGHT and SIMPLE newsletter. Its purpose is to rekindle in the initiated terminology they have once learned, and enlighten the uninitiated on terms they may have heard but never known the meaning of.

Deeper than Skin

Substances enter bodies in three ways: eating (ingestion), breathing (inhalation), and skin (dermal) absorption.

A sage once said, “Thou shalt not eat that whose name you can’t pronounce.” In decades of practice in the hazardous-substance arenas, I have long since reached a corollary: “Don’t let that whose name is longer than six letters touch my skin.”

Out of mere boredom, one day I picked up a face-shaving lotion at the store and started to read the ingredients. I gaped, pulled a pen, reached for a napkin and listed them down:


C12-15 alkyl benzonate
C13-14 iso paraffin
Isononyl isononanoate
Tocopheryl acetate
Retinyl palmitate
Polypropylene glycol
Chitosan lactate
Menthyl lactate
Isopropyl paraben

Isobutyl paraben
Butyl paraben
Benzyl alcohol
Phenoxy ethanol
Isobutyl paraben
Butyl paraben
Ethyl paraben
Propyl paraben
Disodium EDTA
Polymethyl metacrylate

Goodness! Twenty-seven terms I could not spell!

While I could pronounce most, I had no clue on the characteristics. Back in my office I opened a chemical encyclopedia and gave up in a hurry.

The next morning I concocted the Ami Adini’s Homemade Shaving Lotion for the Enterprising Male.

The ingredients:

Liquid soap of the most basic formula
Cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil

The application:
Wet the face with warm water.
Apply the soap and lather it up in light strokes.
Apply the oil onto the soaped face with light strokes.

The combination of oil and soap creates a rich, smooth lather.

While some commercial formulas result in closer shaving, my wife has yet to complain.

And topping it all is my sense of well-being, knowing that the complex life processes running my system are now isolated from 27 alien substances.

A disclaimer is in order, to the effect that as much as I would like to see you benefiting from my experience, skin care is not my trade, I know miserably little about it, and you are on your own if you should decide to follow my formula, on which I maintain no exclusivity.  


You can find past issues of "Environmental Enlightenment" at www.amiadini.com Wealth of information about environmental site assessments in the real estate transactions and issues concerning assessment and cleanup of contamination in the subsurface soil and groundwater.

Call me if you've got any questions. There are no obligations.

Environmental Consultants
Underground Storage Tank Experts
818-824-8102; 818-824-8112 fax

Ami Adini is a mechanical engineer, California Registered Environmental Assessor, Level II, and president of AMI ADINI & ASSOCIATES, INC. (AA&A), an environmental consulting firm specializing in all phases of environmental site assessments, rehabilitation of contaminated sites and upgrading of underground storage tank facilities. AA&A supplies practical solutions to environmental concerns using the highest standards of ethics and integrity while providing its clients with maximum return on their investments.

Some images reproduced under the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation, and courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org and http://commons.wikimedia.org. For detailed copyright information, contact AA&A.