Myth Busting In An Organic-Obsessed World

DISCLAIMER: I’ve partnered with Johnson’s® for this post but all opinions are my own.

For those of you who don’t know, I live in Los Angeles — which is way different from the east coast where I was born and raised. Other than being a city filled with sunshine, beaches, and crazy traffic — it’s also a city that’s obsessed with organic products.

It doesn’t matter if it’s organic fruits, organic vegetables, organic toothpaste, organic diapers — if you can ingest it, apply it, or wear it, there’s a good chance that an organic version is available somewhere in LA. As an LA dad who hangs out with other LA parents, I started believing the whispers at social gatherings:

“Oh, I only pack organic snacks in my son’s lunch.”

“Do you use that new organic sunscreen? It’s amazing.”

“If it’s not organic, my family won’t buy it.”

You get the idea. Organic products are viewed as safe, good, and healthy, while anything else is deemed as “dangerous” for ourselves and our children. Other parents may try to make us feel guilty if we’re NOT using those kinds of products. Finally, I took a step back to realize something: my family used JOHNSON’S® products on me and my two brothers when we were babies, toddlers, and children — and we all turned out just fine as adults (one is a Harvard graduate excelling as a corporate executive, another is a best-selling author, and then there’s me — your friendly, neighborhood, Daddy Doin’ Work).

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And yes, I still use JOHNSON’S® products on myself today, especially the shampoo (yeah, I said it — I still use shampoo. Gotta keep my dome clean. JOHNSON’S® doesn’t tout itself as being an organic brand, but that doesn’t mean their products aren’t safe – they are the pioneers and leaders in the industry. Over 90% of baby skincare research comes from JOHNSON’S®. I’ve been to their headquarters myself, met with the people in their labs and research centers, and feel confident saying that they hold themselves to stringent standards when it comes to safety.

That’s why it’s important to dig a little deeper when it comes to the organic vs. non-organic debate. Did you know that yummy blueberries naturally contain Parabens? Or that apples, bananas, and carrots (to name a few) naturally contain formaldehyde? But I bet that news wouldn’t stop you from having your kiddos munch on those fruits and veggies, right? Of course not. I’ll go out on a limb and state that you probably ate them as a kid and still do today (I know I do). Another fact is out of the thousands of cosmetic ingredients used around the world, less than 2% meet JOHNSON’S® rigorous standards for baby products — and yes, many of those ingredients are actually natural. JOHNSON’S® uses both natural and non-natural ingredients, but the most important thing is they want to put safe products on the market.

I know all of this is true because I spent time in JOHNSON’S® headquarters recently and asked a ton of questions to the scientists who work there. They were honest, smart, and (most importantly) they’re parents. Just by being around them I could tell how passionate they are about their work. Nobody in the building knows more about what their ingredients do than these ladies, and they are 100% committed to making safe products for their babies and ours.

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I even had an opportunity to make some lotion on my own to see an abbreviated portion of their process. It was extremely eye-opening, informative, and fun.

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It’s too easy to feel pressured by the buzzwords of organic and all-natural products without truly understanding if they can help your family. That’s another reason why I believe strongly in Johnson’s® because they make it easy for parents due to their transparency on their Behind the Label page. No need for an advanced chemistry degree, because every ingredient they use is listed in alphabetical order with its purpose in plain English.

As mentioned before, I trust JOHNSON’S® because it was the brand used on me and it’s the brand I use on my kids.

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If you’ve followed me for a while, you probably know that nothing in the world is more important to me than my two young daughters. Do you think I’d do anything to jeopardize their safety in any way? Of course not.

Do your research, be informed, and decide what products are right for your family — because at the end of the day, it’s important to realize that not all natural ingredients are good and not all non-natural ingredients are bad.

8 Parents You Do NOT Want At Your Super Bowl Party

America’s biggest sports day of the year is almost upon us, and yes, I’m talking about the Super Bowl pitting the New England Patriots against the Atlanta Falcons. When it comes to the game, most of you fall into one of three categories:

1) You love football and will be watching the game no matter what, and yes — I’m firmly planted in this category.

2) You tolerate football, but you mostly care about hanging out with friends, eating food, and watching the commercials.

3) You despise football and you will not watch the game under any circumstances.

For those of you in categories #1 & 2, you may decide to host a Super Bowl party and watch the game with friends and family members. If so, I hope these eight parents aren’t at your gathering. More importantly, I hope you’re not one of these eight parents. Oh, and if you happen to be in category #3, don’t worry— I have something for you too.

[Read more…]

No More Wound Myths

I’m excited to partner with Band-Aid and Neosporin on this post.

I remember when I was a kid I used to get hurt — a lot. Everything from broken bones and torn ligaments to minor scrapes and bruises. When it comes to the major injuries, the treatment is set by a doctor. In my case it usually meant undergoing surgery, getting casted, and resting for a few weeks.

[Read more…]

Society’s Fear of the Black Man

As a fatherhood author and activist, I pride myself on talking about issues that celebrate our similarities instead of focusing on our differences. However, when NPR’s Morning Edition contacted me to discuss society’s fear of the black man, I took them up on it because it plays a role in how I approach being a dad. I hope you’ll take the time to listen to the interview in its entirety and share your thoughts.

ACCESS THE NPR INTERVIEW HERE

Dads Going Viral? Yeah, It’s A Good Thing

Dads are getting a ton of attention in traditional media and social media right now. A single dad named Greg Wickherst decided to enroll in cosmetology classes so he could learn to style his 3-year-old daughter’s hair and the world lost its mind. The Super Bowl broadcast aired multiple commercials featuring dads involved with their kids and people still can’t stop talking about them. The list goes on and on.

Meanwhile, there are moms all over the country with arms folded thinking, “Why are these guys getting all of this praise? I do all of this blindfolded on a typical Thursday morning and nobody is planning a parade route for me or even giving me a pat on the back. It’s a joke.”

Not so fast, ladies.

READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE ON ASKMEN.COM