The PURISTICS Challenge. Take it if you dare.

I’m always up for a good challenge.

Growing up squished very closely between 2 brothers made me this way… always keeping up with them.  I developed a keen sense of competition and knowledge of myself at a young age.  I’m still this way.  Challenges, both little and big, spark me.

A year and a half ago, on my 57th birthday, I embarked on a Self-Challenge that I called 57 in 52. I set out to accomplish 57 things in 52 weeks that inspired me, delighted me, challenged me or frightened the proverbial daylights out of me.  I accomplished every one of my “things” in my 57th year.

To name a few, I went skydiving, jumping out of a plane at 10,000 feet on my 57th birthday.  You must understand my paralytic fear of heights and terror of flying to understand the true “heights” of this challenge.

I took pole dancing lessons and mastered (well, minored the elevator lift, where one must be hanging upside down, gripping the pole with one’s legs while slowly sliding down toward the floor.  Gracefully. Did I mention upside down?).

I ran a Half Marathon (beginner runner)…

completed a Half IronMan with my daughter Jane, son Keith and daughter-in-law Nicole (SNL skit… “I don’t swim.”  Seriously, I don’t)…

Ice-skated at Rockefeller Center with my 2 beautiful granddaughters and my husband…

Finished writing a screenplay, attended my 40th (and only) high school reunion, made authentic Portuguese Pudding from my beloved mother-in-law’s recipe (she was smiling from heaven), entered the Family Circle Halloween baking contest (my baked goods are truly scary, but I did this challenge for my 9 grandchildren.  I didn’t win, runner-up or even place… but my Graveyard Cake was a lively success at home)…

I winter surfed (in Rhode Island, in January), hula-hooped, zip-lined, rock climbed, learned to play the harmonica (well, kind of), pogo-sticked… and a bunch of other things.

Then I turned 58 and decided to train for a full marathon.  26.2 miles.  May 1, 2011 is the big day. Two and a half years ago, I had never run a racing step in my life.  But like I said, I’m always up for a good challenge.

So why is it that a little, tiny, itsy-bitsy, teeeny-weeny recent challenge stopped me in my tracks… a challenge that I failed miserably and completely.

Audrey, Jane and I had been talking informally and informationally to a group of women about a line of anti-aging, feminine and baby products that were soon to be launched. 

Puristics is the name.

I liked the sound of the name and the passion of pure in the research and development the products, and I was intrigued to know more.  Then the challenge was presented.  The itsy-bitsy-of-course-I-know-the-answer-to-this question/challenge:

How many products do you use on a daily basis… morning through evening… and what ingredients are IN those products?

This is easy.  Let me think.  Um.  Three products.

And what is IN these products? I don’t know.

Um.  Wait a minute.  Let me rethink this challenge. Um… I get out of bed.  Head to the bathroom.  Wash my face.  That’s ONE.  I use an face scrub.  That’s TWO.  I use a moisturizer.  That’s THREE.  An eye cream.  That’s FOUR. Then a sunblock product… even in the winter… because I run outside.  That’s FIVE.  A tinted blush creme for a hint of color.  That’s SIX .

Wait another minute.  Three or four times a week I use a mud mask.  That would be in-between TWO and THREE, bringing me to SEVEN.  I use a body cream, foot-soothing cream for all those running miles, several hand creams (literally, whatever I can get my hands on during the day), the special/expensive scented creams for special occasions, deodorant, lip balm.   That brings me to THIRTEEN.

Oh, man.  I haven’t even washed or conditioned or hair-producted (is this a word?) my hair yet.  That’s FOURTEEN, FIFTEEN and SIXTEEN.  And all of this doesn’t even count doing lots of this again tonight, before bed… AND a multitude of hand soaps, anti-bacterial and otherwise, that I use all day long.

And the bigger question/challenge still loomed.  Do I know what’s IN these products that I so liberally swathe all over my head, face and body every single day? No. The answer was NO.

This Puristics challenge really stopped me in my tracks because I am a label-reader.  I read every single ingredient on every single food label on every single product that I bring into my home or put into my body.  I have been doing this for years. Decades.

I buy organic.  I buy local when I can.  I do it for my husband, who has Crohn’s Disease.  I did it for my children when they were living at home and growing up strong and healthy.  I did it for our 2 beautiful dogs for all their lives.  I can be annoying about it.  Very annoying.  Especially when it comes to my 9 grandchildren.  I’ve had an occasional “discussion” with my kids about certain food products that I’ve seen in their refrigerators or on their shelves… foods that are unequivocally unacceptable for my grandchildren.  I’m not even one of those just-this-once kind of Grandma when it comes to nutrition and health.

I’m like this when it comes to cleaning/laundry products, too.  I hunt down natural products that won’t irritate skin or present problems from inhalation of fragrances and/or chemicals.

I can actually go into any grocery store and whip through the obstacle course of aisles in lightning speed because I already KNOW the products I purchase.


ANSWER:  They aren’t going INTO my body.

But, of course they are.  Ingredients that I can’t pronounce, potentially harmful chemicals that I can’t begin to imagine, artificial colors and dyes and preservatives and fragrances are seeping into my body every single day.  It was a startling revelation to me.  I had to catch my breath.

The Puristics team asked Audrey, Jane and me if we’d be willing to try their natural-based products… anti-aging, feminine and baby.  A resounding YES.  Part of the YES was because of this, directly from Puristics:

Our naturally occurring Puristics Peptide Complex has been certified by EcoCert, the European organic-certification agency. This certification proves that our supplier has been inspected and that its processes are in conformity with the Natural and Organic Cosmetics standards. Our production processes have met a requirement level that is superior to the conventional regulation governing cosmetics, thereby ensuring the genuine practice of environmental respect throughout the production process, respect for the consumer, and the promotion of natural substances of a superior quality.

All Puristics Pure Protection products have been certified 100% natural cotton by Cotton Incorporated, and the well-known “Seal of Cotton” is prominent on the front panel of our products. In addition to being comfortable, durable, and breathable, cotton is also environmentally friendly. The cotton is a sustainable and renewable resource that is also biodegradable. Furthermore, our tampons have been certified organic by the ICEA (Ethical and Environmental Certification Institute). By using 100% natural and 100% organic cotton in our feminine protection products, we’re helping to encourage farmers to put more acreage into organic cotton production.

Part of the YES was because we were challenged to see if Puristics products were as effective as other products we had been using. I began using Puristics Totally Ageless Advanced Skin Rejuvenating Lotion, Daily Anti-Aging SPF 15 Lotion, Revitalizing Eye Treatment, Intensive Eye Treatment and Night Recovery Cream.

The results were astounding to me.  First, each product felt silky clean.  I felt fresh.  My skin looked fresh.  Even putting on blush and a dab of cover-up here and there felt clean over the the Puristics creams.  I was especially happy with the Night Recovery Cream because I went to bed feeling clean… not greasy or thick with product.

The Revitalizing Eye and Intensive Eye Treatments were outstanding, too.  I have always felt teary when using eye creams, no matter how careful I was about not applying too close to the eyes, and I’ve always had a problem with eye creams running into my eyes when I sweat while I run.  Charming image.  But true.  Suddenly, there was no running while I was running. This was huge for me.  And my skin looked and felt clean and fresh and healthy all day long… better, in fact, than before.

The thing is, I’m not trying to look 25 years old.  Yes, I spent too much time in the sun as a younger woman.  Yes, I have a certain genetic make-up that cannot be erased.  Yes, I still spend a great deal of time out-of-doors doing my challenging things and playing with my grandchildren and my granddogs.  An even bigger YES, though, is that I want to look and feel my best at my age, but I want my anti-aging regimen as clean and as PURE as what I put IN my body.

I’ve found it in Puristics.  I have even reassessed every one of the 16+ products I never-counted-before by studying the ingredients in each of them.  I’m on a mission of PURE for me and for my family.

In the past year and a half, I’ve re-discovered a lot of things about myself.  I’m just as competitive as that 10-year old girl from so long ago.  I still have a lot of challenges in me beyond the 57 in 52 and 26.2 miles (oh, like sleeping in a real igloo, volunteering in a Habitat for Humanity project, learning to knit, getting an awesome tattoo, competing in the “Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon”, to name a few).  I  have a little tom-boy left in me… but I still want to look and feel pretty like a girl.

And I’m always up for a good challenge.  It’s funny, though, how sometimes the least expected challenges turn out to be the most life-assessing and life-changing.

Do you dare take the Puristics challenge?!

Disclosure: We at Mom Generations are honored to be spokespeople for Puristics. We are being compensated for representing the brand; however, all opinions are mine and I stand by them!

About Audrey

Audrey McClelland has been a digital influencer since 2005. She’s a mom of 5 and shares tips on her three favorite things: parenting, fashion and beauty. She’s also a Contemporary Romance Author.

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