I was never interested in green beauty products until I had kids. As a child of the 90’s I was well aware of testing on animals (thanks to campaigns from the Body Shop), but knew nothing about ingredients. Over the years I’ve learnt about the “body burden” and that when looking for products, it’s the ingredients we need to be looking at…not the marketing slogan that claims it’s natural.
When I had kids I became hyper-aware of anything that can harm your baby and that included the lotions and bubble bath I used on them. Around the time my eldest was born, warnings about parabens and sulfates in shampoos and soaps started to become more prevalent, but I honestly had no clue what they were. I had heard that they were endocrine disrupting, and then yoink, the Johnson and Johnson bubble bath (that was used on me as a baby) was no longer in the bathtime routine. My kids now had the best shampoos and lotions that tiny maternity leave salary could get.
While my kids were getting the best of the best, I didn’t even think about what I was putting on my body (classic mom move).
Did you know?
- There are little to no regulations about ingredients in the beauty industry. This doesn’t mean that there are NO regulations, but for the most part, the beauty industry is self-regulated. Source
- To be considered a “Natural” product, you need to have only ONE natural ingredient in the product.
If you really like to nerd out about this stuff as I do, check out this blog from BC blogger Solo Lisa, she’s really laid out some great myths and debunks some facts about toxins.
Once I decided to be nice to myself and stop slapping sulfates, lead, parabens, fragrances, and other ingredients onto my skin I slowly started to make the change to my products. This has been a long process of finding natural products that work for me. Many products, such as natural deodorant, take trial and error to find one that works for you.
Making the switch
If you haven’t made the switch yet or are thinking about going natural I suggest doing two things. Firstly, download the Think Dirty App. It’s a free app from the app store and you can search and scan your products to get a rating. The Think Dirty App rates products by their ingredients, and how natural they actually are. The app relies on companies to be transparent with their ingredients and then rates them. Be warned, many of your favourite products that you thought were natural (like Aveeno) are not rated well. Often you’ll find the smaller and closer to home (Canadian) companies are the most honest about their ingredients and are the cleanest.
Secondly, don’t dump out all the products you have at home to make the switch slow and steady wins this race. Once you’ve finished a product switch it out. The first product I switched was my lip balm, and lipstick. I figured if it was going on my lips I was likely eating it, and it was an inexpensive switch.
Green is going mainstream!
When I decided to switch out my products, they were only available in the WholeFoods kinda stores, now you can get clean beauty products at Sephora. Another great thing about finding clean beauty products is that many of them are made locally. Made in Alberta brands include Rocky Mountain Soap and Routine deodorant.
Since everyone is different and things that will suit me…might make you break out in a rash, but after trying many (many) products, these are hands down my favourite (and Think Dirt Approved) products.
Made in Calgary, Alberta (yes!) I love this deodorant. If you’re sensitive to baking soda, they do have baking soda free versions and vegan versions (no beeswax). This is not a cheap deodorant, don’t panic too much when you see it because it lasts FOREVER. Oh, and disclaimer, you need to apply this deodorant with your finger tips. It’s 100% weird at first, and then after a few days it’s totally normal.
I love this cream so much. It’s nice and light and the ingredients are easy to read and understand. Pomegranate oil, coconut oil, shea butter it’s delightful. The jar is made out of glass which, if you’re feeling crafty you can upcycle it, or clean it out and recycle it. To be honest anything by Rocky Mountain Soap is great. They use 100% natural ingredients (no synthetics) and they’re made right here in Alberta!
Ok – this is where I struggle. Finding make has been hard, especially eyeliner and mascara. I do like the mascara from RMS Beauty, it’s not cheap, but their ingredient lists are impressive AND the mascara is Think Dirty rated ‘0’ which is basically as clean as it’s going to get.
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Have you made the switch to “cleaner” products? Have you looked at the ingredients in your products lately? Most importantly, do you have a good liquid liner you can recommend?
Need MORE information? Check out these resources on switching to natural.
Queen of Green: https://davidsuzuki.org/queen-of-green/dirty-dozen-cosmetic-chemicals-avoid/