Masses of people have already jumped on the healthy eating bandwagon and are well-accustomed to examining labels. If we're so conscious about what we put in our bodies, then why aren't we equally as informed when it comes to what we put on our bodies? After all, roughly 60 percent of everything we use on our skin makes its way into our bloodstream. Scary, right?
Don't panic just yet - As more and more skincare lovers start favoring the clean side of the beauty aisle, your options for products with clean ingredients are growing.
However, you may come to realize that finding a clean alternative for your fave moisturizer or scrub can be challenging. That’s because the phrase 'clean beauty' can mean many different things, and words like 'natural' or 'sustainable' are also subject to various interpretations. Talk about confusing!
So what does the word 'clean' mean when it comes to our beauty routine, and is it really worth buying into? We did some digging and were shocked by what we discovered - Keep reading to get the dirt on what clean beauty products are all about.
So What Does ‘Clean Beauty’ Actually Mean?
Astonishingly, the term 'clean beauty' is still open to interpretation and lacks a clear-cut definition. Other words connected to this concept such as 'natural' and ‘sustainable’ can also be misleading and even subject to misuse. Many skin care experts agree that 'clean beauty' suggests using non-toxic ingredients with an emphasis on those sourced from nature. However, it’s important to note that not all synthetic ingredients are unsafe and not all natural ingredients are safe. Therefore, clean beauty encompasses both man-made and natural ingredients, ensuring the safety of consumers over origin.
What Started This Movement and Why is it Important?
Heightened consumer awareness and demand has been the number one cause for the rapid growth in the clean beauty trend. As the natural beauty market continues to expand, retailers are responding to the desires of consumers by offering safe alternatives nationwide. As far as why it's so important - It really comes down to our health. We don't choose to eat toxic chemicals, so why would we want to put them on our body (which BTW also winds up in our bodies)?
What Are Some ‘Clean’ Ingredients?
It's hard to believe that products packed with toxins are still available when there's a bounty of powerful, clean ingredients out there. For example, Honey is a wonderful antioxidant with antimicrobial properties that make it the perfect addition to masks! Astaxanthin is a lesser-known but oh-so incredible antioxidant found in micro-algae with the potential to transform your skincare routine. Another favorite is Neroli for its ability to nourish and protect skin better than any toxic chemical ever could!
What Are Toxic Ingredients and Why Should We Steer Clear From Them?
When it comes to what's in your personal care products, don't trust the government to regulate what harmful ingredients wind up in there. Seriously - There's no one making sure your body wash, makeup, and moisturizers are even safe for use. That's why ingredients like aluminum can run rampant in antiperspirants and cause a whole slew of health issues. The craziest part is that other parts of the world are already way ahead of us - In Europe, over 1,500 toxic substances have been banned from beauty products and more than 500 in Canada. In the United States, however, that number is 30. Yes, 30.
Until we get caught up with the non-toxic times, here's a few notorious ingredients you should be on the lookout for:
Parabens: These estrogen-imitating preservatives are responsible for causing various reproductive and developmental dysfunctions.
Artificial Colors: Who doesn't like colorful products? I know I do. However, when absorbed on our skin, artificial colors heighten the risk of irritation, blocked pores, and breakouts. Sadly, many big name companies depend on artificial colors to enhance the appeal of their products.
Phthalates: Used to help products penetrate through the layers of the skin, these toxic chemicals impersonate human hormones and have been linked to severe reproductive harm in men and women.
Carcinogens: Most people read the word 'carcinogen' and know well enough that it's not something they want in their skincare products. Cancer-causing ingredients should never grace the label of anything you intend to put on or in your body. Period.
Phenoxyethanol: This dangerous preservative can cause everything from skin irritation to long-term organ damage. Enough said.
Alcohol: Different forms of alcohol are used in skincare as preservatives that also give creams a lighter texture that’s easily absorbed. This might sound nice, but it also stimulates oil production and can lead to an increase in breakouts.
Formaldehye: Formaldehye is used in many skincare products, including body washes and cleansers. It is usually used to prevent bacteria growth; however, it is a known human carcinogen. Commonly found in nail polish, many brands are creating new formulas to avoid formaldehyde use.
Is There a Difference Between Natural and Organic Products?
Yes - Natural products include minimally processed ingredients sourced from plants and nature, while organic products take things to a whole other level. If you crave products that are certified free from GMO ingredients and that are created entirely without chemical herbicides, pesticides, fungicides or antibiotics (don't we all?) - Organic is your best bet. The extra steps taken by organic farming and processing raises the cost of these products, but it's a price we should all be willing to pay. The other problem with natural ingredients is that companies can alter them into something that is no longer natural by using language such as 'derived from' on the label. That all seems pretty shady if you ask me.
So Where Do I Begin With Clean Beauty?
Alright, now that I have your attention - Here's how to begin cleaning up your beauty routine. Start small and work with what you already have by scanning the ingredients of products you know and love. You'll likely be surprised (and possibly horrified) by what you find. Invest some time in exploring clean brands you can really trust like Rovectin. Your body will love you for it.