This month I’m focusing on health, and the products we use on our body are a big part of the picture.
Minimal and Safe Beauty to me means using a manageable number of products that are not hazardous to my health or the environment. This is of course a process for me.
I want to talk about and show you what I use now, why I use it, and my goals for my “beauty” arsenal and routine.
I like to be able to get ready quickly. I don’t like a lot of products and the more makeup I have on, the more I worry all day that it’s getting messed up and looking worse than I would look without makeup on at all.
My skin is pretty clear right now. For a while I had severe chin acne that I think was related to bowel issues. It’s mostly cleared up but I still usually have at least one or two pimples at any given time.
So my philosophy is to try to wear as little makeup as I can while giving myself enough coverage to feel comfortable and confident. It’s also important to me that the products I use on my face and body are on the cleaner side, with few ingredients I don’t recognize or am unable to pronounce.
Another necessary resource to check out the toxicity of beauty products would be the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database, which grades each product on how safe it is to use. Their database contains information on 62,000 products so check it out and see how your products score.
You can also search for information about the toxicity of a specific ingredient found in your products.
The scale goes from 1 to 7, 1 being least hazardous and 7 being most hazardous.
Products I Use + Their EWG Scores
- Dr. Bronner's Castile Soap: Citrus - 1 (washing body, face, and for shaving)
- Desert Essence Tea Tree Conditioner - 2
- Desert Essence Tea Tree Shampoo - not listed
In the shower I’ll tend to use the conditioner more frequently than the shampoo. When I decide to use both, I use the conditioner first and gauge how much shampoo I need to use after so that my hair doesn’t end up too dry or too oily.
I also use the shampoo to wash out the coconut oil from my hair when I do a hair mask.
- Desert Essence Organic Jojoba Oil - 1 (for moisturizing my face and for the oil cleansing method)
- Alteya Organics 100% Pure Bulgarian Rose Water - not listed (toner)
- Kiss My Face Sunscreen face factor - 3
- Tarte Maracujá Creaseless Concealer - 2013 formula rated as a 2
- Zuzu Luxe Dual Powder Foundation - 2
- Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush - 2013 formula rated as a 3
- Mineral Fusion Lengthening Mascara - 2
Face Special Occasions/ Once in a While
- Alba Botanica Very Emollient Sunscreen Lip Care - 2012 forumla rated as a 3
- Burt’s Bees Hibiscus Tinted Lip Balm - 4
- Eco Lips Mongo Kiss Vanilla Honey - 1
- Tarte Lipstick - 2013 formula rated as a 3
- Shikai Borage Therapy Fragrance-Free Lotion - 2
- Goddess Garden Organics Sunscreen SPF 30 Sport - 1
- Piper Wai deodorant - 2
- Crystal Body Deodorant Stick - 1
- Tom’s of Maine Antiplaque & Whitening Fluoride-Free Peppermint Toothpaste - 1
- Dr Tung's Smart Floss
Homemade Products I Use or Have Tried:
- Trash is for Tossers' DIY deodorant recipe - The ingredients include coconut oil, arrowroot powder, baking soda, shea butter and essential oil. I used tea tree essential oil and I think the tea tree irritated my skin and caused some sort of reaction. Next time I make it I’m going to use a gentler essential oil and probably a little less of it. Otherwise, I found this deodorant easy to use and would reapply once or twice a day to maintain freshness.
- Dry Shampoo - This DIY recipe is made of cocoa powder, cornstarch, cosmetic clay, cinnamon, and essential oil. I use it when I have greasy roots and can’t or don’t want to wash my hair at that time, but haven’t been using it a whole lot because I’ve been trying to make my hair look good without using heat on it, so I have been washing/wetting my hair more often.
- Coconut oil - I use this as a body moisturizer and hair mask. More often than not I don’t even feel like using this on my body out of laziness, but will try to do a hair mask once a week or every two weeks. It smells amazing and works great when I muster up the energy to use it.
My Goals for My Minimal & Safe Beauty Arsenal and Routine:
- Nourish my body so that my skin is as clear as possible in order to go foundation-free more frequently and feel confident and comfortable
- Nourish my hair and avoid using heat so that it gets healthier and looks nicer when it dries on its own and does its own thing. (In order to tame my wild hair, I’ve been putting it into a braid in the evening after I wash it, so that it dries in a less frizzy way as I sleep. I also use bobby pins to try to direct the way the hair around my face will dry. It has been slightly successful. I sometimes will still use heat to shape the hair around my face.)
- Make more of the products I use homemade products, reducing weird ingredients used as well as waste produced and money spent.