I always believe that you gain something valuable out of the worst situation. So back around twelve months ago, I fell sick unexpectedly which wasn’t exactly a pleasant experience. However, that has prompted me to go through all my personal care products and carefully look into what chemicals I was layering over my skin and body daily (I’ve blogged about a list of most common toxic ingredients to avoid here). Looking back at my 12 months’ journey of switching to toxin-free and natural ingredients based beauty products, I was fairly astonished by how much wiser I’ve become! Here I’m sharing a few things my beauty detox experience has taught me so far, hoping to inspire you to jump on board the toxin-free beauty revolution too.
My sense of smell has become much more acute
I almost think I’ve become a German Shepherd when it comes to sniffing out any suspicious fragrant ingredients in personal products. Most natural based products do have their unique scent, but those aren’t usually anything too overpowering. Any fragrance that is a bit over the top sets off my alarm these days. It happened to me when I walked into my girlfriends’ bathrooms and smell the artificial scent from her shampoo and shower gel – the smell was so intense that made me sneeze right away. And I was correct. I picked up the bottles to check the ingredients and there are artificial fragrance added. What’s the problem with artificial fragrance, you might ask. It’s a common ingredient listed on labels that brands use to mask any toxins in their formula such as phthalates that can cause birth defects (plus a long list of other health concerns). I’ve determined to say no to any products that doesn’t specific the source of its scent. Nowadays I’m almost 95% accurate when it comes to judging if the products are added with any artificial fragrance just with my nose – it was beyond believable for myself on how acute of sense of smell has become.
I saved heaps!
The number one tip for any newbies switching to green beauty is to reduce the number of products you use daily in your routine. The more different types of products you use, the higher chance you’ll have yourself exposed to various different toxins – it’s as simple as that. When I first started, I look for products that are brilliant multi-tasker. For instance, coconut oil is indeed a holy grail item for green beauty lovers as it performs so well as shaving cream, hair treatment, body moisturiser and luscious body scrub. The cost of a bottle of organic coconut oil? You’re bound to find one for under $15 at the chemists. Replacing my Lancome and SKII with a tub of $15 coconut oil that works equally well means I have some spare dollars to go towards my travel and wardrobe fund.
I’m no longer being fooled by the beauty brands and their lies
It makes me genuinely angry these days whenever I come across an ad from beauty brands saying how their products can transform your skin – yet when I checked the ingredients labels it’s actually a bunch of dirty lies. The products might still show visible results in short term by the look of it, yet do you know what are the long term effects to your health when they’re absorbed into your body over the years of being intoxicated? Mineral oil that is way too commonly used in beauty products including La Mer cream makes me feel sick – it clogs pore and leads to premature skin ageing in the long run. Will that make our skin beautiful in 20 years’ time? Not exactly. I once paid $200 for a tub of miracle cream and I feel like the biggest idiot. It’s empowering and liberating to know that changes is in my hand and I can take the initiative to say no to these filthy beauty lies.
Not all natural skincare products are born equal
This is a common trap that newbies to natural based beauty routine might fall into. Anything that looks green and eco with their product design and marketing taglines might not be that green in fact if you look careful enough. It’s called greenwashing. Beauty brands are seeing the trend from consumers wanting toxin-free choices and jumping onto the bandwagon by labelling themselves ‘green’ without making the real effort. Australian brand Natio advertises their products as the ‘natural solutions’ – but how much is it really? Methylparaben is widely used in their moisturisers and cleansers which is a chemical in the parabens family that is human endocrine disruptor – yikes! Because there’s no legal guidelines in Australia for brands to declare their products ‘natural’, there could still be heaps of nasty toxins hidden in the formula despite its marketing claims. I’ve learnt to stick to brands such Antipodes or 100% Pure who are transparent about how many percentage among their ingredients are fully natural. And some brands even go the extra mile to label percentage of their natural ingredients that are organically harvested. I’ve learnt that not all natural beauty products are equal and to inspect ingredients labels every single time when stocking up my beauty cabinet. One other handy tip is to ask the brand if you’re in doubt about their ingredient labelling. If they can’t answer your questions in an open and honest manner, chances are that there are some green lies that they don’t want you to know.
So here you have it my ladies, I’ve shared the 4 important things I’ve learnt through my twelve month’s journey of beauty detox. I promise once you switched to natural and found yourself a routine that works for your skin type, you’ll never look back! I look at my girlfriends these days and all I see is that they’re layering coal tar and all sorts of yucky petroleum by-products on their face. After all, why settle for filthy products when greener, healthier choices are available at your fingertips?
Do you use natural-based beauty products? Have you gone through and checked all ingredient labels in your beauty cabinet? Are you surprised by what you found in your favourite products? What’s stopping you from switching to toxin-free routine?
We would love to hear your experience so do leave your thoughts in the comment below.
Article by Juliet
Juliet blogs about toxin-free beauty, travel and style over at Lacenruffles.com. She’s on a mission to detoxify everyone’s beauty cabinet. Juliet loves everything with a dash of classiness and she aims to inspire her followers to bring classy back to their lifestyles.