It's not a big of a surprise that the beauty industry makes millions. After all, can you pass by all those shelves with attention-grabbing products and you don't even consider checking them out? Few people can. However, consumers have been evolving and we are more and more worried about our health. So, when it's time to pick a beauty product, we want to make sure that it won't hurt our skin.
I remember when there were very few natural products. Now, almost all products on the shelves are all natural, all organic. I mean thing are changing; people want more and more safe natural skin care and organic cosmetics. I might make us feel that the beauty industry is taking care of us. However, the truth is that these all-natural, organic claims on packages can be misleading. And what you are experiencing is just a pure and simple case of greenwashing.
Simply put, greenwashing is when a brand states that their products are all organic, green, or natural but, in fact, they are not that safe or natural for us or even environmentally friendly. The truth is that some of these products still include dozens of harmful chemicals. However, and somehow, beauty companies hold back this fact from us. In my Swap It Out - Facial Mist and Toner, I share a case of greenwashing for the Garnier facial mist that claims 99% Naturally derived.
One of the things that you may not know is that claims such as "natural", “organic”, "all green" or similar aren't even regulated by the government. Only products that have the USDA Organic Seal have been certified organic. The Eco Cert seal is issued by the European Union. So, ultimately, beauty companies are not committing any crime by misleading us.
When it comes to skin care, you need to be extra careful about what you put on your body. While everyone knows that a balanced diet is healthier, the same is applied to beauty products. According to more than 40 years of American dermatological research, what you put on your body is as important as what you ingest. And this is one of the main reasons why greenwashing is such a big deal and why more and more people are looking for organic skin care products.
So, how can you fight greenwashing in the beauty industry? How can you be sure that you're using a natural or organic product?
The truth is that when you see the organic or natural label on a product, you expect it to be petrochemical-free, mineral oil-free, paraben-free, silicone-free, fragrance-free, alcohol-free, and no animal testing, but you have to read all the ingredients on your product labels to ensure it. Download my list of dirty 10 ingredients that are toxic and should not be in your products. Don’t just assume that a product is natural and organic because the front of the product claims it. Two apps you might want to download: the EWG Skin Deep and Think Dirty apps. Both apps have a database of many natural skin care products and organic cosmetic brands products that have been evaluated for level of toxicity.
Below are brands that I love for their commitment about formulating or selling products that are authentically safe and clean.
100% Pure : This is one of my top favorite brands. They formula many products from skin care to makeup. 100% pure products are vegan and fruit pigmented.
Credo Beauty: All the products are carefully curated to ensure that they are clean and safe to use.
Safe and Chic: I love that you can shop 100s of organic and natural products without leaving their website. That’s a lot of savings in shipping costs. Save 10% Off with the code CHIC.
Vapour Organic Beauty – Love their makeup! It is a little pricey but they make high performing natural makeup products.
CLOVE + HALLOW is clean makeup brand that has affordable non-toxic cosmetics.
Beauty companies aren't interested in spending so much money when they can sell more by showing an attractive package with the organic and natural tags. There are even cases of beauty products stating that they are organic when they are only including a drop of one organic essential oil in their formula.
Would you put mercury on your skin? If not, then, it is time to transition to safer and cleaner beauty! We all have a story behind why we switch to natural skincare products. For me, it was the result of my quest to find effective products to deal with my acne and my dry and sensitive skin on my body. I used a lot of conventional skin care products, so I researched the ingredients in my favorite skin care products and discovered that most of the ingredients were skin irritants or possibly dangerous for our health. (read our Why Natural Beauty? Toxins To Avoid in Your Skin Care Products ).
First, anything with parabens and SLES had to go. I found myself spending hours reading labels, studying ingredients, and identifying the best product for each skin types. I learned so much and I’m still learning to this day. It was difficult to give up my old skincare products though; I used some of these products for a long time, and they became a part of me and my identity, so it was quite overwhelming to decide to throw them away.
Transitioning to natural and organic skincare can be an overwhelming experience. Here, I give you five tips I wish I knew before starting to transition to clean safe beauty.
1. Transitioning to natural skincare is not a race, it’s marathon. It’s all about finding what products work for you. Trying to switch all our products at once can quickly become a very overwhelming experience. Actually, we don’t see results right away when we switch to natural and organic skincare products; there is a detoxifying period. Natural and organic skincare products work with the skin instead of forcing it into becoming different like regular commercial products. It takes two weeks for the toxins that were accumulated in our skin to be released. I would say that it takes four weeks to see actual change in the skin when using natural and organic skincare. So, changing all our products at once would be a big mistake. Start small with one product at a time; we created the CFB's swap it out section to help you switch to natural/organic products. There, we gave you natural alternatives to different products.
2. Find out about ingredients. You’re going to need to familiarize yourself with potentially toxic ingredients used in the skincare industry. Did you that there are 75,000 industrial chemicals and at least 5,000 of these chemicals are used in the cosmetic industry? Yes, 5000 and several of these chemicals have been classified as harmful to our health. It is essential to know about ingredients in our products. You probably already know that we need to avoid parabens (Isobutylparaben, Butylparaben, Methylparaben, Propylparaben); they are the most common preservatives used in skin care. Many scientific studies have confirmed that parabens have the potential to cause cancer because of their estrogenic activity. We created a dirty 10 list to give you quick access to the most commonly used potentially harmful ingredients. Check it here to get our dirty 10 list.
Did you transition to natural beauty? What was your experience?