Sometimes I do things for no apparent reason. One purpose-free activity that I occasionally revisit: Reading product labels. Sometimes there’s fascinating information hiding in the small print. For example, today I’d like to tell you about one of my favorites, the label on a tube of Gillette® PRO Shave Cream.
This is a good shaving cream for anyone who appreciates a product that doesn’t spray aerosols from pressurized cans into the atmosphere. My smooth face also appreciates the chemical formulation that makes shaving pleasurable and contaminant-free.
The listed elements are fascinating. Included alongside water, stearic acid, sodium hydroxide and menthol is an ingredient that’s brand-new to me: Aloe barbadensis leaf juice powder—perhaps one of those mystery chemicals? Turns out, instead, that this material—also known as aloe vera—has been used as a skin moisturizer for over 6000 years. The aloe plant is a succulent originating in the Arabian Peninsula, but is now grown commercially all over the world. Aloe’s medicinal benefits include protecting the skin against inflammation and serving as an antioxidant.
The label for this shaving cream includes both English and French verbiage—presumably to appeal to Canadians, too. One curious bilingualism: “Sensitive” in English becomes “sensible” in French. Taking that as a message-known-only-to-me, I am reminded that, to be sensible I should also be sensitive!
After thinking about this, the now-apparent result or reason for all of this turns out to be simple: I can appreciate more deeply the qualities of this daily-life necessity, and can be grateful that I’m connected to thousands of people all over the world, who have used the same skin-healing substances over thousands of years. And as you might expect, I’m happy to have discovered a new aphorism: Sensibility starts with sensitivity!
Words to live by. To shave by….!
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