If you’ve ever wondered what the clean beauty movement is all about, then look no further. In this post, I’m going to be looking at what clean beauty is, why it’s more than just another trend and how you can start cleaning up your beauty products.
Simply put, clean beauty is all about choosing your skincare and beauty products with better knowledge and care. You’ll want to choose products that are considered safe and healthy for humans and for the environment. This means that they’re free of toxins and other chemical ingredients that have harmful effects on both your skin and the planet.
Finding clean beauty products can be tricky. However, with more of the industry now reflecting consumers’ desires for natural, non-toxic skincare, toiletries, make-up and hair care, there’s much more information to help do so.
There’s definitely been a global swing towards making more sustainable and healthy choices in the beauty industry, and that’s a great thing. Still, for many of us, it’s hard to know if a product is really clean. Misleading packaging and unclear labelling is still a huge problem. While it’s great to see so many beauty and cosmetic brands addressing this, there’s definitely more to be done.
If you’ve been wondering how to clean up your beauty products or if you want to find a straightforward guide to clean beauty, then let’s jump in and find out why it’s so important. This post contains some affiliate links to clean beauty products and brands if you’d like to check them out.
Clean beauty for beginners
Clean beauty is an overarching concept and a lot of it boils down to making informed choices. It encompasses the idea of products that are ‘free from’ toxins and chemicals. Clean beauty products try as much as possible to eradicate ingredients that have harmful effects on people and the environment.
Some of these harmful ingredients include old familiars I’ve looked at in my curly girl method product guides. Sulphates and silicones are also hugely present in a lot of non-clean make-up and skincare products.
Other harmful chemical additives often found in beauty products include mineral oil (which is basically highly processed petrol), parabens and phthalates (often used as preservatives). These substances are used in lots of cosmetic and personal care products. Then there are added fragrances and even heavy metal substances like lead, which is often found in lipstick.
Is clean beauty important?
It’s actually quite serious. Recent research has shown that parabens and phthalates in particular are disruptive to the endocrine system, and mimic human hormones. Even in small doses, these chemicals can have a wide range of health-based repercussions for those using them.
According to research carried out by an endocrine research foundation last year, this is worrying because a large number of illnesses and conditions are known to be impacted by disruptions and anomalies in human hormones, including diabetes, fertility issues, thyroid problems and ADHD.
There are also a lot of unknown factors about these chemicals. In particular, how they’ll interact with one another once they’re absorbed into the skin and body. When you think about the harmful chemical effects of cigarette inhalation, it’s definitely an interesting parallel.
While it’s difficult to say how extreme the problem of unclean beauty products is for human health, it’s certainly concerning. This is why perhaps more and more consumers are beginning to seek out healthier, safer brands and products for themselves.
How to get started with clean beauty
Firstly, if you’ve never paid much attention to the contents of your make-up bag, now’s the time to start. Go through it with a fine-toothed comb and just purge anything that you think is old, out of date, or chemically questionable. Get rid of anything you’re unsure about, or you can go through the ingredients lists if you’re really keen to hang onto something.
Do the same for your haircare and skincare products. Try your best to just get rid of or use up the old products and be sure to recycle the bottles they came in. Then you can move forward. Your skin will thank you for it later!
Once you’ve gutted your product collection, you may be feeling like the cupboards are a bit bare. However, there are plenty of places to replace your old products with cleaner alternatives.
My first port of call would be Green People, a UK-based company specialising in organic lifestyle products, including make-up, skincare and sun protection. They have a range of suitably clean beauty products for children and men too. Cruelty-free, organic and free of synthetic chemical additives, Green People’s range is fantastic for anyone looking to clean up their beauty routine.
A great starting point for clean beauty products is Yes To. Their entire product range is a minimum of 95% natural ingredients and they’re all cruelty-free too. Their product formulations are all free of SLS and parabens, as well as free from silicones.
This is a great one-stop shop for all your clean beauty buys. Check out their full range of brands for guaranteed non-toxic, natural make-up, hair products, body washes, deodorants and everything else. They also have a range of eco-friendly detergents and laundry products which can help you take your new green regime further up a notch.
Made in Australia, Sukin’s range is naturally created with no chemical additives or animal derivatives and is carbon-neutral. Check out some of their best-selling products for yourself.
Other ways to clean up your beauty routine
If starting over with a whole new set of products seems like a drastic change, then make gradual shifts in your beauty routines instead. Once your current product is used up, switch to a non-toxic version next time. Take it slowly, and try to remember the benefits of moving towards a more natural health and beauty regime.
We’re all becoming increasingly mindful about what we put into our bodies, and our skin should be no exception to that. Count the number of chemical ingredients in your products, and prioritise those you can reduce first.
You can also start to scale back on the number of products you’re using in the first place. Do you really need that silicone-packed primer? If not, try going without for a little while and see how you feel. Your skin might thank you for it too.
One green swap I’ve made is to change bottled shampoo for shampoo bars. Cutting down on the amount of plastic I’m using for my hair and beauty products is another way I’m trying to become greener.
Clean beauty doesn’t have to be complicated
Hopefully, this post has given you a few things to think about when it comes to your beauty products. You don’t have to do anything drastic, but by making more informed choices about the substances you’re exposing your skin and hair to, you can start to make small changes.
These changes could have a really positive impact on our overall health and wellbeing. So, you’ve got nothing to lose by trying to clean things up a bit.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. If you’ve got any suggestions for getting started with clean beauty please let me know in the comments.
If you’ve found this post helpful then please do share it or give it a pin on Pinterest. You might also enjoy this post on ingredients to avoid in the curly girl method if you’re looking to clean up your haircare routine.