Clean beauty is not mean beauty.
Although there may be some who judge others, I believe in educating and empowering others in their beauty and product choices, rather than judging.
What Is Clean Beauty?
Clean beauty means there are no known toxins in the formula. Products need to be transparent—meaning every ingredient, including the components of the "fragrance," is listed. Clean beauty products include ingredients that are ethically sourced and are made with the health of our bodies and the environment in mind.
Many wonderful and healthy options have been available. But recently, clean beauty options truly have burst forth in full bloom for you to partake of and never look back.
There are those who are hesitant to switch their beloved products to clean beauty options. These products have worked so well for them, they cannot imagine a cleaner formula working as well as or better than what they have.
The search seems daunting, the price of investing in new products seems daunting—and let's not forget the emotional connection we can have with our trusty old products.
The products we use on our faces and bodies have memories attached to them—some good, and some bad.
When clients come to me to go through their makeup bags to help them pitch, swap and clean, it's not just to organize or simplify and make healthier beauty choices: It's also a time to reminisce and lay those memories to rest in our hearts, rather than use that memory in the form of a 20-year-old lipstick you may think about wearing because it brings you back to that great party you felt so amazing at!
Makeup, skincare and our beauty are emotional, full of memories and interconnected.
Our beauty is a collection of how we feel, how we felt and how we hope to feel. It's about how we look, how we looked and how we hope we will look. It's all connected.
Makeup and skincare have come a long way and we are met with great choices that not just affect how we emotionally feel, but also affect our health.
What goes on our skin and is absorbed through our skin matters.
The combination of what we are exposed to on a daily basis—in addition to what we use on our bodies and faces—matters. I believe our health is our beauty and our beauty is our health. Neither should be a tradeoff and neither should be compromised, ever.
Carcinogens, hormone disruptors, sensitized skin, and damaged skin are real factors our health and faces are up against.
But Where Is a Girl to Start?
How about right here! I have compiled a list of ingredients you can print off and take with you to every cosmetic counter and grocery store, to see if these are listed or not. If they are, move on.
The "Dirty" List
- 1,4 Dioxane
- Mineral Oil
- Synthetic Colors
- Synthetic Fragrance
This is how we keep clean from being mean.
This is about understanding more. It's about educating ourselves and others to be better stewards of our health and our environment's health, too, while truthfully still looking fabulous and feeling fabulous!
There is a reason you try to eat clean. The same reasons apply to what you put on your face and body.
You can do this!
One thing to be wary of is "greenwashing"—when a company, government or other group promotes green-based environmental initiatives and products that actually do very little or are not truly healthy for you and the environment.
It boils down to the truth. Companies that do not have anything to hide fully disclose all ingredients and practices. The others do not.
It is not enough that a label says "paraben-free" or "contains natural ingredients on the front," because these products many times have all or most of these other dirty ingredients within.
The truth is, cosmetics and skincare really do not need to contain these toxic ingredients to function well. In fact, I will go as far to say that products function even better without!
There is so much power in a plant, and so much power in your choices.
The next time you pick up a bottle of something, do not fear. Instead, be curious and inquisitive about what is within.
Ask questions. Get answers. Live fearless in your choices. Embrace your beauty memories, too.
It is a process—and one worth your time and effort to understand and embrace for your health and our environment.
Written by Rachel Williams, a joy-filled wife and mother of two children. Rachel is a veteran beauty expert, author, internationally recognized makeup artist and esthetician, and is the founder of Lorde Beauty. Michigan's first clean beauty boutique and spa, Lorde is located in Grand Rapids. Find out more at www.lordebeauty.com.
Photos Courtesy of Lorde Beauty.