Green Cosmetics: Know What to Buy

Green Cosmetics: Know What to Buy

green your cosmetics!

Nowadays you can hardly watch television or open a magazine without being bombarded by an ad for things like lipstick, perfume, eye shadow or cologne. Each one promises youth, sex and everything in between. However, pull back the veil of the glossy waif beauty or the six packed he-man and you may very well be surprised as to what actually makes up many of your beauty choices. There is ruthless animal testing, unreported insect ingredients, toxic chemicals and more. By choosing green cosmetics you will help support companies who make responsible environmental choices while protecting yourself from dangerous ingredients, and there’s no need to compromise quality or capability.

What to Avoid

Before choosing your cosmetics, make sure to look for certain ingredients that could be hiding in between the lines. Even alleged eco-friendly products may contain chemicals that have been linked to a variety of potential skin allergies, irritations, trans-dermal microscopic synthetic toxins; pore blockage; fossil fuel production like petroleum and in some rare cases possible organ damage. Below is a list of some popular toxic ingredients to look for and avoid:

  • Parabens a/k/a methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben or butylparaben.
  • Phthalates a/k/a dibutyl phthalate (DBP), Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), SLS
  • Petroleum, Propylene Glycol
  • Coal Tar

Green Choices

The above ingredients may sound daunting and/or impossible to avoid however finding an alternative choice is not impossible as they are becoming more readily available. Read the label of green products which should show simple, botanical ingredients that are not harmful to you or the environment. Look for ‘cruelty free’ brands displaying the Humane Cosmetics Standard (HCS) label which promises that animal testing has not been carried out. There are also well marked petroleum-free products that compete with such things as lip balm and gloss. Beeswax is a great alternative which also supports environmentally essential bee farming. Certified organic is often a clear sign of a green, healthy product. However, do not be confused by words such as ‘natural’, ‘organic’ or ‘hypoallergenic’ as these may be misleading advertisement schemes to get you to purchase a non-green choice. Look for a ‘100% Certified Organic’, ‘USDA Organic’ or ‘Eco-Certified’ label to make sure the product you are considering is adhering to strict, green standards. There is also the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics contract that many companies have signed and made available on their products and/or company info. Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Cosmetics database – Skin Deep is a fantastic resource for finding out what’s really in your products.

Self-Lab

Sometimes you can create your own green cosmetics by simply formulating your own products at home. Body lotion, shampoo, conditioner, soap, anti-bacterial additions and even toothpaste can all be made to order by you. It may take some time but you can save money, the environment and avoid toxins by knowing every step that goes into your product. Plus, the lack of packaging alone is a great step.

Green cosmetics show the potential of anything being adaptable to socially conscious responsibilities. Ignore the hype and listen to your body, offering it an embraceable, natural choice as opposed to the synthetic, potentially toxic flavor of the month.

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