As I mentioned in my post “Turning Into a Crunchy Person,” I’ve gone on a quest to change all of my beauty products into chemical-free, natural, vegan options. Here’s a run down of what I’ve switched to, including some “make at home” options. At the end you’ll find some links to additional information, resources and supplies.
Philosophy: Natural products list all of their ingredients. I avoid any product that I don’t immediately know what the ingredient is. I also avoid some natural products like minerals, mica and iron oxides.
Warning: There are MANY products listed as “organic” or “natural” that are NOT. You must read the ingredients— even much of the stuff at whole foods!
Tip- if you find a natural product you like, look at the ingredient list, you may be able to make it at home pretty easily!
Face wash: Desert Essence Thoroughly Clean. I find this a bit drying and might look for something else when I run out.
Toner, day: Thayers Witch Hazel Alcohol-Free Rose w/Aloe Vera. Smells great and is non-drying.
Toner, night: Mario Badescu Alpha Grapefruit Cleansing Lotion. Love this, will totally try to make it myself next time since it has very simple ingredients.
Recipe for homemade toner: Mix aloe vera gel, witch hazel, essential oils or hydrosol (a scented water left over from the creation of essential oils).
Moisturizer, day: Badger Aloe Vera Sunscreen Lotion. Moisturizer with sunscreen was the hardest thing to find. I was looking for one that was non-comedogenic, non-toxic, natural, and non-nano particles. I’ve finally settled on Badger Balm. Also available at HEB, Sprouts and Whole Foods, this is the best, and most well researched, sunscreen I could find.
If you’re looking to save a few bucks, try to make your own sunscreen. And if you want to know all the ways that sunscreen is bad for you, check these links out. Why nano-particles in sunscreen is bad and Why chemical sunscreen is bad.
Moisturizer, night: Jojoba oil (non-comedogenic and mimics your body’s natural face oil).
Blemish Stick: Burt’s Bee’s Herbal Blemish Stick. Another one you can probably make on your own (especially since Burt’s version contains alcohol which can be drying).
Mask: Powdered Calcium Bentonite Clay (as face mask) available at Whole Foods. Learn about the many benefits of clay. And experiment with other clays like Dead Sea Mud.
Deodorant: Crystal body deodorant (aluminum in regular deoderant has been thought to cause breast cancer). I have actually been impressed with this deodorant, I really didn’t expect it to work well, but so far, so good! Even tested after yoga and bike rides.
Recipe for homemade deodorant
Lotion: Virgin coconut oil or Shea Butter.
Shampoo: Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap. Love this stuff, makes you all tingly!
Conditioner: Aubrey Organics – Glycogen Protein Balancing (GPB)
Deep Condition: 1x week alternating between clay hair mask and coconut oil treatment
Body wash: Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap. 18 uses, so they say. Try it as your hand soap, too.
Bath salts: dead sea mud, benzonite clay, epsom salt
Sugar scrub: Easily made with any oil, turbandino sugar and essential oils.
Cornmeal scrub: Buy blue cornmeal from the store, mix with honey (which is naturally anti-bacterial) and scrub away!
Foundation: 100% Pure Foundation with Super Fruits. Find it to have great coverage and nice creamy feel. Does tend to show any skin flakies, so moisturize well first!
Concealer: 100% Pure Fruit-Pigmented Concealer. Not super coverage, but works ok if you set well with powder.
Blush: Beet powder (pictured at the beginning of this post). This is awesome. It’s a gorgeous color, and totally natural. I bought beet root tablets at whole foods and cracked them open. You can buy the powder much cheaper online.
Powder: I made my own with corn starch, cocoa powder and turmeric until it matched my skin color. Then add 15 drops of jojoba oil and a few drops of any other essential oil you like (I used rose-hip). Stir, put in a jar and apply with a brush! Note: corn starch is used in many commercial powders, and turmeric is good for your skin, but don’t use too much unless you want to stain yourself yellow!
Lips: I tried making lipstick at home. It’s really hard to do using natural ingredients. The recipes using beet juice, etc make a pretty color in the jar, but the color doesn’t actually do anything to your lips. I have a few other ideas to try, but until I prefect it, here are some for purchase that are truly natural:
Eyeshadow: I am currently using: corn starch (highlighter), corn starch plus cocoa powder plus tumeric (makes a gold color) for lids, and cocoa powder for crease. You can’t get much more natural than this. Be creative and look for other powdered spices to use as eye makeup (just don’t be dumb and use things like Cayenne pepper on your eyes, OK?)
Tip: You can add about 15 drops of jojoba oil to a tsp of powder and press it into a container to make a pressed eyeshadow- better for travel than loose!
Eyeliner: 100% Pure Black Tea Pigmented Gel Liner. Tried to find a way to make at home, but was unsuccessful, so for now I will purchase.
Mascara: 100% Pure Black Tea Fruit-Pigmented Mascara
Note: I highly recommend 100% Pure’s products- one of the only truly natural make-up companies out there. Watch out if you are anti-mica like I am (it is natural, but it’s mineral), as some of their “shimmery” colors do contain mica. (If you are in Austin you can buy their products at Keep Austin Gorgeous)
Hydrosol (the scented water captured during the essential oil making process). I use Rose Water hydrosol as a face and hair mist. Also great for spraying on linens.
Essential oils: key to add to homemade make up, shampoo, etc… buy here.
Perfume: Jojoba oil plus whatever essential oils you want to smell like
Supplies to make your own products
- Beet Juice lipstain video (didn’t color my lips, but I’m going to try with Hibiscus juice next as I heard it stains better)
- Annatto lipstick
- Lip plump: going to make my own with organic aloe vera gel, vegetable glycerin, cayenne extract, peppermint oil, cinnamon oil. These are the main ingredients in many commercial lip plumpers- the cayenne and cinnamon irritate your lips, making them swell slightly.
- Lip balm: Melt 1 tsp beeswax, 1 tsp coconut oil and add a few drops of essential oil.
- Eyeshadow, blush: Use powdered fruit or spices
About some ingredients
- Carmine: Common colorant in red lipstick. Is made from ground up beetles. No joke.
- Mica: Very common colorant and adds shimmer. Comes from the earth, but is often synthetic. Risk of heavy metals.
- Iron Oxide: Very common colorant. It’s literally rust, so although technically natural, I don’t want to put rust on my body. Possible risk of heavy metals.
- SLS (foaming agent in shampoo): Known irritant and alters hormone production. Possibly causes cancer.
- Nano-Particles: Believed to penetrate the epidermis, entering your blood stream. When buying foundation or sunscreens look for non-nano zinc oxide.
- Activated Charcoal: I’ve noticed on a lot of natural beauty blogs people are using activated charcoal as an eyeliner. Here is the Material Safety and Data Sheet. I would NOT use this on my skin.
- Parabens: Believed to be a factor in breast cancer.