Happy Monday, everyone! Today I’d like to expand on the non-toxic favorite posts I’ve done in the past and share every. single. product. I use to get ready in the morning. I’ve talked before
about the catalysis for this green living journey we’ve embarked on and it’s something that I’m continuing to learn more about each and every day. While I know it can be a tremendously daunting task to remove the myriad of toxins that are likely hiding in your home, my best advice is to take it slow. That said, refreshing my beauty and skincare routine was by far the most difficult – yet also the most important. As you apply these products directly to your skin, and often leave them there all day, you are absorbing every ingredient directly into your body. In fact, one hundred percent of women of childbearing age have detectable levels of phthalates (fragrance ingredients that may be reproductive toxins) in their bodies, probably because of cosmetic use. While we aren’t planning on starting a family for a few more years, that statistic (from The Honest Life
) terrified me. I immediately began overhauling my own beauty routine – from shampoo to moisturizer, primer to foundation.
Some argue that this is one area where you can completely eliminate toxic exposure because unlike air pollution or the necessity to do your laundry, makeup is completely optional. To those, I say more power to you but my makeup routine simply is not optional in my mind. I have a great deal of fun using makeup to express myself and it’s a simple joy in life I wasn’t willing to forgo. So! I got to work replacing my routine – one product at a time. This has been a trial and error process that’s taken me well over a year and countless samples but I think I’ve finally got a good one that works for me and my skin!
If you are beginning this process I hope that you find my recommendations useful – they’ve certainly been battle earned by testing hundreds of products until I ended up with the winning few. If this post is interesting for people, please let me know and perhaps I can convince my mom to share her non-toxic beauty treasures as well in a future post as we have opposite skin types and makeup preferences!
Lavanila, The Healthy Deodorant, Sport Luxe Scent:
This deodorant is a tried and true for me as I’ve been using it for years. It’s been able to stand up to everything I’ve thrown at it from long runs to black t-shirts. It even lasted me the entire day on our wedding day! I prefer the “sport” version because it doesn’t have much of a scent but the other versions of this brand work well too.
Caudalie Vinosource Moisturizing Mattifying Fluid:
I’ll be honest. For years, I skipped moisturizer all together because I was afraid that adding more grease to my breakout-prone skin wasn’t a great idea. Turns out, it’s exactly the opposite because if your skin isn’t properly hydrated it will produce more oil to compensate. I’ve been using this moisturizing fluid for nearly a year now and truly love it. It’s deeply hydrating yet light and I notice my foundation is shiny around 3 pm if I skipped this step in the morning. Other than the slightly high price tag, I have zero complaints and would highly recommend this for anyone with sensitive skin.
NARS Pore & Shine Control Primer:
This primer claims to “blur the look of pores, soothe the skin, and help your finished look last all day”. Rarely does a claim that bold or presumptuous hold up (especially in the natural beauty realm!) but I can confidently tell you, dear reader, that this does just that.
Kirkland Makeup Remover Wipes: If family or friends are inquisitive about our effort to detox our home and a bit overwhelmed I always tell them to switch to Kirkland brand everything from Costco as an easy first step. It’s cost effective and I’m continuously surprised that the products – everything from dishwasher packets to make up remover towels – are some of the best performers on the market with very clean ingredients. These are simple makeup remover sheets that I use to remove my makeup at night and clean my foundation brushes with in the morning but that which they do, they do well!
Essential Oil Perfumes: Did you know that there are over twenty years of conclusive research that suggest phthalates can mess with our hormones and damage our reproductive health? And, wouldncha guess it, phthalates are the main ingredients in perfumes (among other things). If you are going to forgo one thing in your beauty routine, this is the easiest way to cut chemicals in one go. I love making my own with a few drops of essential oils – gardenia and jasmine are my favorites – to a body oil. There are also many brands that have natural, non-toxic options (Olivia Giacobetti) is one example. Just look for something that’s phthalate free!
Sunday Riley Martian Mattifying Toner:
Ah, Sunday Riley. While I truly love everything in their line and it’s got very clean ingredients, I rarely can justify the cost. My one exception is the toner. It’s a splurge to be sure but I haven’t yet found one I love half as much in the save category. It helps with breakouts a lot and keeps my foundation from getting shiny all day. I am planning to play with apple cider vinegar mixtures for my toner when my current bottle runs out. As always, I’ll keep you updated!
Skin Laundry Acne Face Wash:
As you’ve probably gathered, I would say my skin leans toward oily and can be breakout prone. That said, I also feel like I’ve tried every non-toxic cleanser on the market so I do have some experience there! This Skin Laundry one is a very solid middle ground – I wouldn’t say it helps my skin but it certainly doesn’t irritate it at all which is half the battle with sensitive skin. If you have other products that keep oil under control (as I do) this is a perfect face wash – well priced and doesn’t do anything to rock the boat. Plus, as someone who moves through products at an obscene rate, this lasts forever
If you are interested in other standouts that I’ve tried over the last 18 months, I have a few recommendations. For a splurge face wash, I use the Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip Clay Cleanser
and I absolutely love it. It’s one of the few that I notice a difference almost immediately. To make it last longer, I typically use it only once a day at night and then in the morning my favorite “save” fash wash is the SheaMoisture African Black Soap Problem Skin Facial Wash and Scrub.
You can get it at Target and it’s also been one that I’ve found myself buying again and again. I’ve had some success with the Andalou Citrus Kombucha Cleansing Gel and Toner
as well but our local Super Supplements stopped carrying it consistently. If you can find it, I would highly recommend that one as well!
Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo and Conditioner:
I debated including these in this round-up; however, as this is truly every product I touch morning and night, they made the cut. You can find these for $6 per bottle at Target, they smell delicious, don’t contain SLS, and clean my hair just fine. While it’s nothing I rave about to friends, there’s nothing I don’t like about them to try something else. Do with that information what you will 😉 I’ve also used the Honest Beauty line
and while it’s much closer to salon quality, I’m not sure I would say they are worth the price unless you have hair with specific needs.
Herbal Essences bio-renew Hairspray:
Of all the items in this roundup, this is the one that’s not truly clean. It’s significantly better than most aerosol hairspray’s on the market but it still has several ingredients listed at level 5 (out of 10 on EWG, anything 3 and below is considered totally clean). This hairspray doesn’t have any colorants, parabens, or gluten but does still contain the ever-mysterious “fragrance”; hence the rating. My mom has made the switch to a completely natural hairspray but the good ones only seem to come in spray form, not aerosol and I just can’t get with the program. If anyone has any non-toxic, aerosol hairspray recs please, please, please send em my way!
Drybar Hot Toddy Heat Protectant:
It smells amazing. Oh, you want to know how it actually works? I undoubtedly notice a difference with split ends and general health of my hair when I don’t use this heat protectant for any length of time. Plus, did I mention is smells heavenly?
Kylie Cosmetics Burgundy Palette:
I know. Kylie Cosmetics. Really? I’d be rolling my eyes too but it’s truly a great product! The eyeshadows are highly pigmented and last the majority of the day. It was tricky to track down a list of ingredients – I finally had to email customer service – but after going through them individually on EWG, nothing scored higher than a 4 (a single ingredient) and most were 1’s or 2’s. Expect your order to take over three weeks to arrive but when it does…I was pleasantly surprised! I’ve also had good luck in the past with the Tarte Rainforest of the Sea
eyeshadow palette (great colors, very bendable, not highly pigmented) and Natasha Deanna
(amazingly pigmented, blendable, very expensive for the size of the palette) if you are looking for other alternatives. My next palette will be the Laid Bare
palette which I’ve heard is a Naked dupe!
Josie Maran Coconut Water Lip Tint in Honeymoon Honey:
Well before I got into the natural beauty game, I was a Josie Maran Coconut Oil Lip Tint fangirl. Two summers ago, I heard rumors that they were being discontinued so I frantically ordered six from online. Turns out, the discontinuation of the line created such a riot that they were thankfully forced to bring them back! It’s the lip tint I wear for morning meetings when my face needs a touch of natural color and its the lip tint I wore on my wedding day. It’s truly that versatile and beautiful. As an added bonus, it lasts forever and doesn’t dry out my lips in the slightest.
Kylie Cosmetics KKW: Much like the Burgundy Pallet above, customer service is terrible, product shipments are slow, and launches are absolute insanity but the products really are worth the Instagram-fostered hype. This line of matte, nude-colored lipsticks are very natural and easy to throw on for morning errands or date night.
Honest Beauty Mascara:
I feel as though the validation for this mascara is best demonstrated through a short story. The other day a friend who knows I’ve been making an effort to transition to non-toxic beauty options complemented my mascara, following up in the same breath with a “that’s not one of the organic options is it?”. Yep! It was! She was shocked and as this is my sixth tube of Honest Beauty mascara I feel very confident recommending it. The key is in the primer step on one end of the tube and mascara step on the other. Thick, full, defined lashes with no chemicals? Yes, please!
Nu Evolution Complete Coverage Foundation:
Foundation was hands down the most difficult thing for me to replace. I had found my holy grail foundation in the Makeup Forever HD Foundation and I would be willing to bet that I’ve tried 90% of the full-coverage, natural foundations currently on the market in an effort to replace it. Finally, after countless samples and full bottles that just didn’t impress me, this one blows me away. I prefer a full-coverage, matte finish and I could never get the application of a cream foundation just right; I longed for my liquid foundation. This one is liquid and has a beautiful, buildable coverage. If you email the company they will send you samples so you can find your perfect shade (I’m a 106 and was a 120 in MUF). I’ve used up over 20 bottles and am still a fan.
bareMinerals READY Bronzer in The Skinny Dip: bareMinerals is a OG in the natural beauty space so this likely isn’t a grown breaking discovery for anyone but this bronzer has been a go-to for me, able to successfully replace my previous favorite Naked pallet. I hate the bareMinerals foundation personally (not enough coverage) but I’ll recommend the bronzer with ease. It has a touch of sparkle and is easy to layer for light or medium coverage.
Boscia White Charcoal Mattifying Makeup Setting Spray:
Years ago I fell head over heels for the Urban Decay makeup setting spray – I’d never tried one before and was blown away when I didn’t have to touch up my makeup at all throughout the day. When I began switching out my beauty products for non-toxic versions this was the first I settled on as it’s a very close dupe to the Urban Decay version. I’d say it lasts 80% as long as the cult classic but it’s a solid natural alternative. There’s a lot of negative reviews about the nozzles on Sephora but I’ve had many bottles and never had an issue
And finally! For a fun outtake – a little reminder that my assistant never strays far from my side, even when his feet are messing up the shots. Please let me know if you try any of the products or you have any questions about non-toxic beauty! I’d love to help however I can.