Stories of life on our farm in Northwest Georgia where every day is an adventure in this beautiful spot that God has entrusted to our stewardship.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Think Dirty!

If you thought this was a post about gardening, you're mistaken!  And as cute as Ebby is, it's not about Dexters giving themselves clay facials, either!

This post is--believe it or not--a review of an App!  Don't worry, this is still a farm blog, but I just have to share this great App--which I found through my interest in essential oils--because it helps me "live clean."

One of the first ways I used essential oils was putting thyme, lavender and eucalyptus oils in hot compresses on Ebby's udder when she was newly-freshened to give her comfort and help her relax.

It wasn't Ebby that introduced me to Think Dirty, however.  I discovered this app when it was recommended in a Facebook group.

The website states:  "Think Dirty® is more than just a mobile app - it’s a consumer revolution for safer cosmetics by learning one ingredient at a time, changing to cleaner options, one product at a time.  Join me to take back our power to vote for products that are safe, clean, and not “Dirty”. The time is now."

It sounded like a great idea, so I got the App and tried it out Sunday afternoon.  Using Think Dirty is very easy and rather addictive in a fun way, although the results were a fairly damning indictment of my bathroom contents!

I've never even used the scanner thingy on my iPhone, but I could figure this App out without much trouble.

Enable the camera on your phone, then hold the camera over the barcode of the product you want to scan.  You'll see a small window appear with a red line through it, and the barcode shows up inside the window.

This photo is so blurry because it's easier to do this than to take a photo of oneself doing it, using a camera in the other hand!  The Think Dirty scanner works so quickly I could barely get a photo of the scanning process.  At least you can see how the barcode shows up in the window with the red line through it.

If products are already in Think Dirty's system, they pop up fairly quickly, showing a "Dirty" rating from 0 (good) to 10 (bad).

Here's a decent rating of 3.  It's easy to remember, green means "go," so you can go ahead and keep using this one.

Look at the"Dirty Meter" on the left.  You'll notice that nothing pops up under the "Carcinogen,"  Developmental & Reproductive Toxicity," or the "Allergies & Immunotoxin" scales.

Here's a cream for sensitive skin that I used to slather all over myself during the winter.  It gets a half 'n half rating of 5--yellow for "caution."

Now look at the "Dirty Meter."  The allergic index isn't too bad (unless you consider that this product is made for sensitive skin!), but do I really want a 5 out of 10 on the Carcinogen scale soaking into my skin all winter?  Not really!

Think Dirty offers a lot more than a numerical rating and the Dirty Meter, though.  Notice the "Ingredients" tab in the center.  The 19 ingredients in this product don't all show up on this screen shot, but the six worst ones do.

The "5" rating on this product corresponds to the ingredient with the highest score.  It's not an average, which is a good thing because 18 low numbers averaged with one very high number could lull you into thinking the product is safe.

Finally, check out the "Our Picks" tab on the right.  Think Dirty provides 54 alternatives to this product and gives you their score to compare.

That makes Think(ing) Dirty a great thing to do while you're shopping.  In fact, I can't wait to go shopping and Think Dirty!  Last time I looked at "healthy" shampoo options, I ended up not making a selection because I couldn't narrow the choices down.  With Think Dirty, I can easily weed out any that aren't "clean" enough and find good alternatives.

I think this picture is worth 1,000 words.  This is a product I bought for my grandchildren to use on their cuts and scrapes.  Look at "Developmental Toxicity" in the Dirty Meter.  And this would go directly into their bloodstream--Yikes!

Think Dirty comes with ready-made lists you can save your products under as you scan them.  You can also create new lists of your own choosing.

Here's part of my "Dirty Products" list.  Next time I go shopping I can look up suggested alternatives for each one to be sure I replace them with something safe.

As I scanned items in our bathroom, these three came up as 5's.  I decided, however, that we aren't going to brush our teeth with something that's 5 out of 10 on the Carcinogen scale!
These items ranged from 6 (on the left) up to 10 (on the right).  I plan to replace them all with the help of Think Dirty.  Notice that lots of words on their labels don't mean what you and I might think they mean:  "natural, therapeutic, herbal, pure and nursery."

One final, great feature is that if a product you scan is not in the Think Dirty database, you have the option to send it to them and request it to be added.  It's easy to do, and I sent quite a few in myself.  Now I just have to wait on the notifications to decide the fate of these items.

If you care about your family's health, I highly recommend that you start to Think Dirty!  What's not to love about an App that does all this--AND has a name that just begs to make puns?

Think Dirty about the Bare Necessities of Life . . .

Think Dirty cleans up your life . . .  Sorry, I couldn't resist!  Try Think(ing) Dirty yourself and let me know what you think!


  1. Thank you for reviewing this app! I can't believe the Hugo product was a 6, I thought all of their ingredients were food grade.

    1. I was astonished on that one, too. When I went to scan it, I thought, "Well, at least I can be happy about this one." That's why I love this App because you just can't tell what's in things.

  2. When I started reading I thought I didn't need anything like this, since I don't wear make up and make most of my own skin care products. But I wasn't thinking about shampoo, toothpaste, etc. Thanks for reviewing this!

    1. You're welcome, Karen. I never expected that result on toothpaste, either. I still need to do all my liquid shower soaps that I bought at Whole Foods. I wonder if any of them will make the grade.

  3. Susan--OMG--I'm getting this app right now. I've been thinking lately that US citizens really have the proverbial wool pulled over their eyes--we think--*ASSUME*--that our food, medications, toiletries, etc are safe...when in fact they are NOT! I think the wake up call alarm has been ringing for some time now, and most of us are ignoring it! Thank you! And I'm going to post a review of my own on my FB page! You are awesome--thank you again for taking the time to do this!

    1. You're very welcome, Sharon. I sure had the wool pulled over my eyes! Thanks for helping get the word out.


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