Out with the Old, In with the Natural: Three Simple Steps to Green Your Beauty Routine

Cosmetics phyto cream

Your skin is your largest organ, and you absorb whatever your skin touches. That means that what you put on your skin daily – and what you put in your mouth – are of equal importance. But when it comes time to shop for green beauty products, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the options, ingredients, claims and buzzwords.

And how do you even start to tackle that pile of products in the bathroom?

Knowing what key ingredients to avoid can help you navigate the label of any shampoo, lotion, deodorant or cream. By cleansing your cupboards of these top offenders, you completely “green” your beauty routine.

So what’s the best way to start?

Take inventory.

Line up all of the products you use every morning on your bathroom counter – shampoo, soaps, lotions, creams, fragrances, deodorant, toothpaste…all of it!

Categorize.

Check each product’s ingredient list against the list below. If a product has one ingredient on the “avoid” list, pull it aside. If it has two ingredients, put it in a separate group. Three or more ingredients? Put it in a third group. Once you have gone through all your daily products, take an inventory. How many are in the “one ingredient” group?  What about the three and more group?

Plan and Replace.

Every change you make to decrease the toxins in the environment matters, but this isn’t a case of “all or nothing.” If you decide to dump them all and start fresh, good for you!

But, if you want to take a more gradual approach, start with the “three ingredients or more” pile. Ditch these products today, and treat yourself to natural, pure, toxin-free products that you will love. I recommend starting with what you put on your face, body creams, and deodorants.

Next, make a list of the products in the group one and two piles. As you run out of these products, replace them with a natural version. Repeat until you have completely detoxed your beauty routine!

Want some product recommendations to get you started?  Stop by Well & Good for my favorite skin care lines, body creams, nail polish and polish remover, and deodorants, which are all organic. I am in the process of gathering all of my favorites in my Organic Lifestyle Boutique. I’ve done the research and product testing for you!

Here’s a list of ingredients to look for (and avoid) on your labels:

  • Fragrance, parfume (phthalates)
  • PEGs (polyethylene glycols): peg-80 sorbitan laurate, peg-150 distearate, anything with “PEG”
  • Parabens: anything with the suffix “paraben,” most common – methylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben
  • DEA, MEA, TEA: diethanolamine, monoethanolamine, triethanolamine, cocomide DEA, lauramide DEA, oleamide diethanolamine
  • Coal Tar: FD&C…, D&C… (i.e., FD&C Red number 6, etc.)
  • BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene)
  • Triclosan
  • Sodium Laurel Sulfate
  • Vitamin A (retinyl palmitate, retinol), especially for products worn in the sun, such as sunscreen or day moisturizer
  • Petrolatum (i.e., petroleum jelly)
  • Siloxanes: ingredients ending in “siloxane” or “methicone”
  • Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives: DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine, quaternium-15, and sodium hydroxymethylglycinate
  • Oxybenzone

Here’s to enjoying a more natural 2014, full of pure and luxurious products you will love!

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