It’s 7:30 am, and you’re in front of the mirror again. It’s a routine you could do with your eyes closed-rifling through your makeup bag, applying foundation, concealer, mascara, blush, and you’re out the door…
But you’ve been wondering lately: “Should I switch some of these products for “healthier” alternatives? Do I need to clean up my beauty routine?”
Your Makeup Bag Makeover Starts Here
There’s just one problem. A simple Google search of “natural makeup” enters you into a minefield of overwhelm-wondering who and what to believe. All-natural. Pure. Organic. Non-toxic. Sounds great, but what do they mean? Let us shed some light on the marketing lingo, and explain why natural and organic cosmetics are important-just not in the way you might think.
Natural Makeup-What’s Healthy?
Marketing claims about the safety of makeup products and their ingredients often aren’t worth the labels they’re printed on. And with up to 60% of the products we use on our skin absorbed and deposited into our circulatory system, that’s a problem.
So rather than spending copious amounts of time trying to get to the bottom of what’s actually in the products you’re using, the Environmental Working Group provides this handy guide:
Cosmetic ingredients to avoid:
- DMDM hydantoin & Imidazolidinyl urea
- Methylchloroisothiazolinone & Methylisothiazolinone
- Fragrance and dyes
- Parabens or -paraben
- Iodopropynyl butylcarbamate
- Triclosan & triclocarban.
Cosmetic products to avoid:
- Anti-aging creams with lactic, glycolic, AHA and BHA acids
- Nail polish & removers with formaldehyde
- Skin lighteners with hydroquinone.
Swap This For That
So you now know which ingredients to avoid, but what should you be looking for when starting your makeup product swap out? Below are some ideas from Goop, but most importantly, take it slow and look at replacing one item at a time or when you next run out of something:
Replace preservatives with a water-free formula
Replace silicones with oils and butters
Replace oxybenzone with zinc oxide & titanium dioxide
Replace petroleum with botanical butters
Replace harsh detergents with enzymes, clay, & essential oils
Replace coal tar combustion byproducts with mineral pigments
Replace petroleum with coconut oil
What About Organic Makeup?
We are big believers in the importance of organic practices (which is why we source organic turmeric and grow our hemp under organic standards). Products that are certified to be at least 95 percent organic will bear an official USDA Organic seal. And for ingredients that the USDA doesn’t certify, you’ll need to do some extra digging to find out how the ingredients are produced (and if you can’t find it in an easy spot, buyer beware!).
Natural Makeup-What’s hype?
There’s a perception that “natural” makeup is better or safer than regular cosmetics. But in an industry where sales of “natural” personal care products are burgeoning, you simply can’t assume every company has your best interests at heart.
“Natural” should mean zero chemicals, artificial dyes, preservatives, fragrances, harsh surfactants, formaldehyde releasers or petroleum-based ingredients. And when you look at the list of ingredients you should only see fruit, flower, herbal or plant extracts, natural plant-derived oils, etc.
“Safe,” “Non-toxic,” “Hypoallergenic,” Gentle,”
There’s no official consensus or standard of what any of these terms means. In fact, it doesn’t necessarily mean plant-derived or made from renewable resources, or safe, or eco-friendly, or not tested on animals-crazy but true! The only way to know is to ask the company for their definition or look for it on their website-like ours.
There are plenty of cosmetics brands that are truly natural. You just have to do some research to find out who is reliable and who isn't.
Put Your Best Face Forward
In pursuit of beauty remember that cosmetics can be complex combinations of chemicals. And while you might feel you need a science degree to understand them all, even a basic understanding of what to look out for can go a long way to helping you make informed decisions about the products you next add to your makeup lineup.
Ultimately, switching over your makeup is a personal decision. But it’s definitely worth doing your homework if you want to start investing in truly natural beauty so you can really have faith in what you’re buying. It may seem like a lot of effort, but honestly, it could be your key to perfect skin.