You wouldn’t eat petroleum distillates or polyethylene, right? So, why would you put them on your skin? A famous actress, Alicia Silverstone made a good point by saying, “When you go to put things on your face, you want to treat it the same way as (the food) you're eating.”
What should you do then, give up on makeup? By no means. Makeup is an essential part of beauty routines of many women, used to enhance and improve their personal appearance and self-esteem. It has been like that ever since Ancient Egypt, so we can’t assume that we are going to stop using it all of a sudden, because someone said that it is harmful.
There are other things you can do to “green up” your makeup habits, without giving up this beauty-enhancer. Here are some of them.
Know What You Are Using
Before you move on to buying new products, check whether the products you are already using are filled with toxins. Many of the chemicals used in conventional makeup products are downright poisonous, especially to the endocrine system. Parabens and phthalates are examples of substances that are used commonly in cosmetics. Both of them have been linked to type 2 diabetes and cancer, and the Environmental Protection Agency warns against their exposure. Check whether your favorite products contain some of these chemicals on Skin Deep cosmetic database.
Read the Labels
Every now and then we hear a new TV commercial saying that some makeup product is healthy and pure, and it will give you the natural, glowing skin that you deserve. Although it’s easy to get enchanted by the promising words and beautiful images, you should try to look beyond that and read the product’s label before you buy it. You’ll be surprised by how often you will see “formaldehyde, parabens, etc.” on these products.
Use Products without Synthetic Fragrance
If your favorite lipstick has that undefined but divine smell that’s simply asking for kisses, we’ve got news for you: it’s no good. Fragrances are often a mixture of various chemicals that, due to loopholes in law, don’t have to be disclosed by the manufacturers. Double-check all the products for synthetic fragrances, and opt for the ones with natural aromas.
Prep Your Face
Nurtured and properly prepared skin is a great foundation for makeup. First, because it requires little to no-makeup whatsoever. Second, because it enhances the efficiency of makeup. This means that you should have a consistent skincare routine that includes cleansing, exfoliating and hydrating, especially before you apply the makeup.
Your skincare products should also be organic. So, you can ditch the alcohol-based cleansers and move to natural bar soaps, homemade scrubs (e.g. brown sugar, honey and olive oil) and an organic moisturizers.
Use Certified Organic Makeup
The simplest way to prevent toxins from synthetic makeup from entering your organism through your skin is to replace all of your products with their certified organic alternatives. With the products that have organic certification, you can be sure that there are no loose ends and that the ingredients used are natural and organically produced.
Furthermore, certified organic products are rich in nutrients, which means that they contain nourishing ingredients, such as herbal extracts, essential oils and botanicals. This gives your makeup another important purpose, besides the beauty-enhancing one – nurture.
The Simpler – The Better
Even if you do opt for certified organic products, you should know that the very essence of organic monument lies in simplification of our habits. Think about it: do you really need every little product from concealer to illuminator? Instead, you can opt for some multipurpose products. Eyebrow pencils can easily be daytime eyeliners. Lash primer can serve as brow gel. Some lip balms can nourish dry skin patches or act as an eye gloss. The old secret our grannies passed on to us is the fact that lipsticks can turn into creamy blush in no time.
Conceiving your makeup routine like this will not only do wonders for your skin, but it will also save you both money and time.
Make Your Makeup
Believe it or not, it is possible to DIY your makeup cosmetics. That way, you’ll know that the products you are using are 100% natural. Blush can be made with beet root powder and almond oil; homemade foundation with arrowroot powder and ground cinnamon; eyeliner with charcoal and coconut oil; eye shadow with arrowroot powder, shea butter and turmeric and lipstick with beeswax, shea butter and coconut oil.
When making your own products, though, you should keep in mind some basic safety guidelines: choose proper packaging, take the shelf life into account, if you’re using water as an ingredient – use distilled, and use natural preservatives (rosemary oil extract, vitamin E, coconut oil or grapefruit seed extract).
Going green with your makeup routine is, first and foremost, a matter of your health. Natural ingredients will definitely keep your skin looking youthful much longer than synthetic products will, and they are not harmful for your health. Also, switching to an eco-friendly beauty routine is a small, but meaningful step in preserving our planet’s resources, so what do you have to lose? Give it a try.