A few years ago, Jordan Danger’s body suddenly started going haywire.
Jordan, a young, offbeat and style-conscious marketing professional, had long experienced some chemical sensitivities, but had always managed those without too much trouble. Suddenly – and inexplicably – hives were a regular occurrence. Her eyes stung and watered. Her hair frayed and became brittle. Seasonal allergies became unbearable, and she developed lactose intolerance.
She tried switching up her beauty products, but continued to experience unpleasant reactions. Her doctor was unable to help; the medicated and hypoallergenic products that were recommended contained chemical ingredients that irritated her skin further.
In desperation, she stopped using all products except for the bare bones basics. Unable to use styling product on her short spiky hair, she let it grow out. The former stylist and make up artist resigned herself to her new, low-maintenance existence. “I was in a rat hole of sadness,” she jokes. “I’ve always enjoyed dressing myself up, and I couldn’t anymore."
One day in fall 2012 during a trip to Ikea, Jordan noticed the newly opened terra20 store and decided to see what it was all about. What she discovered changed her life.
“There were so many options. A whole store of products that I could safely use! I had become accustomed to using nothing at all, or having only one or two options from which to choose. I was in tears,” Jordan says. “I broke down and cried.”
It was the start of her love affair with terra20, and the reintroduction of beauty products back into her life. One by one, she reintroduced all of the products she had eliminated, including cosmetics, personal care products, scented candles, and even home cleaners. She became such a regular visitor that many of terra20’s staff know her by name, as well as her preferences and favourite products (and her opinion on every product she’s tried.)
“terra20 is the only store where I can truly say I look forward to seeing the staff, and seek out their valuable opinions. Sometimes I go just to browse, as an indulgent treat,” Jordan says. “Even if the staff weren’t there, I love that I could almost choose blindly off the shelf, and would end up with a product that is safe and effective.”
She still doesn’t know exactly why she’s so sensitive to so many things (to-date the list includes parabens, glycerine, and synthetic fragrances and preservatives) but she’s now able to easily find products that meet her needs.
She says that many of the products she now uses from terra20 are even better than the conventional products she used before; she is now able to use fewer and higher quality products, because with conventional products she found she would need to use additional products to fix the issues created by the poor-quality commercial solutions.
And someone committed to supporting local businesses, she says shopping with terra20 is win-win. She shares her favourite products with her friends and family, and feels great doing so.
“I don’t feel badly for what I’m doing to the earth – or my body – when I shop at terra20. I have a sense of connection with the products,” she says. “I feel healthier and happier, inside and out.”