Beauty is more than skin deep. Literally. Every product you use is absorbed in some way by your body. I like to make sure that the products I use contain the least harmful ingredients. It doesn’t mean I have to sacrifice style or comfort. I still shop the counters at Barneys to the aisles at Target and come away with products I love. Why bother, you ask?
Whether for babies or adults, we’re using about 20 health and beauty products a day and 89% of the over 10,000 ingredients have never been tested for safety by the FDA because the government doesn't regulate health and beauty products. But the Environmental Working Group decided to change that. So far they’ve tested over 40,000 beauty and skincare products and rated the results in an easy to navigate database, Skin Deep. It’s not all bad news. There are a ton of great products out there from big companies to tiny storefronts. You may be surprised to learn the drugstore brand you use is healthier than the one that says ‘all-natural.’
If your beloved gloss turns out to be full of hormone disrupters, there’s more than just recycling the tube. Write to the makers of that fabulous gloss and let them know you’ll be back if they clean up their act. Many already make different formulations for sale in Europe where regulations are stricter. And we're seeing a number of big name cosmetics companies removing the worst offenders from their product lines. Stores are devoting space specifically to the greener products, like Sephora and drugstore.com. Change is coming.
Sophie Uliano, author of the fabulous and very accessible Gorgeously Green, is one of the few eco enthusiasts out there willing to say that it isn’t easy being green (at first). Refreshing honesty, no? Her book gives you a variety of resources for beauty, health and home along with some great DIY beauty recipes. Here's Sophie's DIY salt scrub.
FYI: Sophie uses essential oils in her scrubs. I love the lavender essential oil from Fleur de France. Not all oils are created equal or are entirely natural. This company makes amazing oils and they smell incredible.
The Gorgeously Green website is an extension of Uliano’s book, with weekly fashion and beauty finds, and info from her latest release, The Gorgeously Green Diet. Of all the lists out there, I think her fabulous worst offenders cheat sheet is the most info without overwhelming you entirely. Keep it in your purse when you’re out shopping and all of those impossible to pronounce ingredients will be at your fingertips.
Eco-chic does not necessarily mean organic. It means finding products that make you feel beautiful along with the oceans and rivers into which all these products end up. To keep updated on the latest and greatest eco-beauty, bookmark sites like Ecofabulous, Sprig and The Good Guide.
And let us know at Beauty Banter if you're having any trouble finding a good eco-alternative to your favorite products. xo a.